The Oakland Ed Week in Review 5/4/24-5/10/24 

It’s time for the Oakland Ed Week in Review!  

We’re back with our roundup of education news from around The Town, the Bay Area, state, and nation for your weekend reading. This is a Dirk favorite and one of the last blogs he published for Great School Voices.  

Here’s what’s been going on: 

Here in Oakland |  North Oakland Community Charter School faces closure due to financial woes. OUSD transitions to non-police campus safety measures. Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell enters Alameda County Women’s Hall of Fame for leadership. Safe Routes to School program enhances safety around five Oakland schools. Franklin Elementary excels in Financial Literacy Month. Lighthouse Community Charter celebrates college-bound seniors. OUSD shifts to community-based violence prevention strategies.

In the Greater Bay Area |  Antioch school supervisor faces leave amid bullying allegations. ELITE Charter protests Vallejo permit decision, citing racial bias. East San Jose teachers demand higher wages. Berkeley Unified faces federal probes over antisemitism and racism. SFUSD under state pressure amid budget crisis. Alameda schools celebrate achievements. San Jose middle school incident sickens students.

Throughout the State of California |  Newsom’s budget proposes cuts to student aid, LAO proposes charter school fraud reforms, California grapples with budget deficit, LAUSD protests against staffing cuts, McClatchy High suspends adviser over Hitler quote, Thurmond announces community school grants, college degree ROI in California, voters to decide on finance course mandate.

Across the Nation |  School leaders refute antisemitism allegations, study reveals disparities in English-learner graduation rates, schools struggle with mental health needs, judge rules against blocking critical race theory discussion, conservative activism impacts school boards, NWEA advises on Algebra I readiness, Cardona apologizes for FAFSA delays, Dept. of Education launches program to boost FAFSA completion, calls for Cardona’s resignation, Friendship Aspire Academy transforms education in Pine Bluff, Florida disputes education rankings, Illinois youths at risk of losing after-school programs, Virginia district restores Confederate names, Newark charter school closure sparks outcry.

What did we miss?  Hit us up in the comments below: 


North Oakland Community Charter School could close

What’s happening: North Oakland Community Charter School faces potential closure amid financial struggles and enrollment declines, despite recent academic gains and community support.

Why it matters: The school’s closure will disrupt the education of its students and impact the surrounding community, highlighting challenges facing charter schools and the complexities of accountability measures.

Notable quote: “It is unconscionable that the Oakland Unified School District is enforcing this contract based on the academic performance of NOCCS during a worldwide pandemic when families and students in this community were suffering the most.” – Jaime Colly, California Charter School Association,

By Ashley McBride for The Oaklandside

OUSD optimistic about non-police campus safety efforts

What’s happening:  The Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) replaced its school police department with de-escalation teams at seven schools, leading to optimism about campus safety.

Why it matters:  This shift reflects a community-driven approach to safety, reducing reliance on law enforcement and promoting alternative strategies for student well-being.

Notable quote:  “What we are doing at OUSD is we’re re-imagining what safety looks like as a community effort,” – Misha Karigaca, OUSD Director for Student Support and Safety 

KTVU Fox 2 News

Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell is Inducted into the Alameda County Women’s Hall of Fame

What’s happening:  Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell is inducted into the Alameda County Women’s Hall of Fame, recognizing her exceptional leadership in Oakland Unified School District.

Why it matters:  Her induction celebrates her significant contributions to education, community engagement, and advocacy for women’s representation in leadership roles.

Notable quote:  “I am deeply honored… This induction fuels my commitment to continue making a positive impact for our students and creating opportunities for women in our community and beyond.” – Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell

OUSD Newsroom

How roads around 5 Oakland schools could get safer this summer

What’s happening: Five Oakland schools are slated for traffic safety improvements this summer under the “Safe Routes to School” program, addressing long-standing concerns about pedestrian and bike safety.

Why it matters: The delayed implementation underscores the significant backlog in infrastructure projects, highlighting the importance of prioritizing student safety and the need for efficient city planning.

Notable quote: “We are operating under the principle that if we make our streets safe for 8-year-olds and 80-year-olds, those of us in between are probably gonna be OK.” – Josh Rowan, OakDOT director

By Joe Fermoso for The Oaklandside

OUSD Highlights Financial Literacy Month by Celebrating Amazing Financial Wizards at Franklin Elementary School

What’s happening:  Franklin Elementary School excels in Financial Literacy Month with fourth and fifth graders dominating the National Stock Market Game, showcasing early financial education benefits.

Why it matters: The achievement highlights the transformative impact of financial literacy, empowering students with real-world skills and entrepreneurial spirit for future success.

Notable quote:  “Their success should inspire us to expand these opportunities to all students… ensuring that every child has the chance to build a brighter future.” – Valerie Chapman, Educator

OUSD Newsroom

East Oakland charter school celebrates senior students at college declaration event

What’s happening: Lighthouse Community Charter School in East Oakland celebrates over 50 seniors declaring their college choices.

Why it matters: Students like Yafet Aklilu, a first-generation American, exemplify resilience and success in overcoming obstacles, underscoring the transformative impact of community support on educational attainment.

Notable quote: “It means a lot for me and my family because my family are immigrants from Ethiopia who work really hard day and night for me and my sister to receive a higher education.” – Yafet Aklilu

By Amanda Hari for CBS News San Francisco

How are violence prevention efforts in Oakland schools working?

What’s happening: Oakland Unified School District transitions from a police-oriented safety approach to community-based violence prevention strategies, funded by the city’s Department of Violence Prevention.

Why it matters: With a focus on reducing violence and suspensions, the shift highlights a broader movement towards reimagining school safety and addressing systemic issues impacting student well-being.

Notable quote: “Safety is really a community effort where you wrap your arms around the incident and find support in a holistic sense.” – Emily Zanoli, OUSD Program Manager for Violence Prevention.

By Ashley McBride for The Oaklandside

The Bay Area

ELITE Charter School Conducts Sit-In Protest at Vallejo City Hall After City Council Vote

What’s happening:  ELITE Charter School stages a sit-in protest at Vallejo City Hall after City Council reverses a 6-1 vote denying their permit for downtown expansion.

Why it matters:  The reversal sparks allegations of redlining and racial bias, igniting intense debate over equitable access to education and community development.

Notable quote:  “We are deeply troubled by the turnover… which we believe to be red-lining… Our sit-in… is a testament to our unwavering commitment 

By Magaly Muñoz for Post News Group

Antioch school board fails to remove superintendent despite claims she allowed bullying

What’s happening:  Antioch school supervisor Kenneth Turnage is on leave after allegations of employee bullying, while the Antioch Unified School Board splits on removing Superintendent Anello amid claims of bullying oversight, sparking community outcry and internal dissent.

Why it matters:  Allegations of unchecked bullying and administrative inaction highlight governance challenges and workplace safety concerns within the district.

Notable quote:  “It’s amazing how people don’t want children to be bullies, but adults are the biggest bullies there are,”… “It’s literal adult high school.”  – Nicole Arrington, addressing the board on Superintendent Anello’s leadership.

By Judith Prieve for East Bay Times

Additional coverage: Antioch school supervisor placed on leave after NBC Bay Area worker bullying report, by Candice Nguyen for NBC News Bay Area

East San Jose teachers demand raises to meet cost of living

What’s happening: Teachers in the East Side Union High School District in San Jose are demanding higher wages to cope with the rising cost of living. The district, facing a significant budget deficit, has offered a 1.1% raise for the upcoming school year, which the teachers’ union considers inadequate.

Why it matters:  The wage dispute highlights the tension between educators’ financial needs and the fiscal challenges faced by school districts, exacerbated by state budget cuts and funding shortages. The outcome of these negotiations will affect the livelihoods of teachers and the quality of education in the district.

Notable quote:  “Do they deserve more money? Yes. Has inflation gone up? Yes. Are they having a hard time making ends meet? Yes, 100%… It’s so heartbreaking, but that doesn’t mean we have the money to give.” – Pattie Cortese, School Board President

By Annalise Freimarck for San Jose Spotlight

Berkeley superintendent faced intense questioning on Capitol Hill on alleged antisemitism

What’s happening: Community groups call for federal investigation into alleged racism and Islamophobia in Berkeley Unified Schools, coinciding with an Education Department probe into antisemitic incidents.

Why it matters: Intense Capitol Hill questioning of Berkeley Unified superintendent underscores concerns over rising antisemitism and racism in public schools, prompting federal scrutiny and calls for action.

Notable quote: “Antisemitic incidents in our schools are never acceptable and they are not who we are.” – Enikia Ford Morthel, Superintendent of Berkeley Unified School District

By Suzanne Phan for ABC7 News

Federal investigation opened on Berkeley schools over antisemitism 

What’s happening: The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights launches a formal investigation into alleged antisemitic bullying within Berkeley Unified School District (BUSD) following a complaint filed by advocacy groups.

Why it matters: The investigation underscores concerns over the safety and well-being of Jewish students, addressing discrimination and fostering inclusive school environments.

Notable quote: “Jewish grade school students — like all students — deserve the ability to attend school in a climate free of prejudice, threats or bias.” – Jonathan Greenblatt, Anti-Defamation League CEO

by Amy Larson for KRON4 News

Berkeley Unified hit with new civil rights complaint over anti-Palestinian and Arab racism

What’s happening:  Berkeley Unified School District faces a civil rights complaint alleging anti-Palestinian and Arab discrimination following previous scrutiny over antisemitism.

Why it matters:  Allegations of racism highlight division over the Israel-Palestine conflict, prompting debates and legal challenges within the district.

Notable quote:  “No student or staff member should feel unseen or unheard—we must ensure schools are welcoming for all.” – Superintendent Enikia Ford Morthel

By Ally Markovich for Berkeleyside

SFUSD officials under pressure from state amid ongoing budget crisis

What’s happening: SFUSD faces financial crisis, may run out of cash by next school year, prompting state intervention and potential layoffs and school closures.

Why it matters: Raises concerns about the district’s financial management and its impact on students, parents, and educators, with potential consequences for staffing and educational quality.

Notable quote: “This is not going to make more third graders and more eighth graders able to pass a math test. This is going to make that worse.” – Concerned parent, Bridget Dyer

ByTim Johns for ABC7 News

AUSD Notes: Congratulations to Alameda schools’ various award winners

What’s happening:  Alameda Unified School District celebrates achievements including high rankings for two high schools, a teacher selected for the Grosvenor Teacher Fellowship, and student musicians’ success in a New York City competition.

Why it matters:  Recognition of academic excellence, professional development opportunities for educators, and student achievements contribute to the positive reputation and educational environment within the district.

Notable quote:  “I can’t wait to share my Antarctic experience with my students and provide them with a direct connection to polar climate science.” – Jennifer Hartigan, Grosvenor Teacher Fellowship recipient

By Susan Davis for East Bay Times

Protests persist throughout UC Berkeley law commencement ceremony

What’s happening: Protests erupted during UC Berkeley’s law school commencement, reflecting ongoing tensions over Israel-Hamas conflicts and free speech.

Why it matters: The ceremony highlighted deep divisions within the university community, raising concerns about academic freedom and campus discourse.

By Joe Garofoli for San Francisco Chronicle

The State of California 

Financial aid for California students takes a hit in Gavin Newsom’s new budget proposal

What’s happening:  Governor Gavin Newsom’s budget proposal includes significant cuts to the Middle Class Scholarship and a halt to expanding the Cal Grant program, impacting over 300,000 students.

Why it matters:  Students facing college expenses may experience reduced financial aid, with implications for access to higher education and affordability for middle-class and low-income families.

Notable quote:  “We have a math problem… Is this what I want to do? No.” – Governor Gavin Newsom, acknowledging the challenges of budget deficits and tough decisions impacting student financial aid.

By Adam Echelman for Cal Matters

Dozens of fixes proposed to deter more mega-cases of charter school fraud

What’s happening:  Reports from the Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO), Fiscal Crisis Management Assistance Team (FCMAT), and the Anti-Fraud Task Force of the California Charter Authorizing Professionals outline numerous proposals to address vulnerabilities in oversight and auditing that have allowed significant fraud cases in California charter schools.

Why it matters:  The proposed fixes aim to enhance oversight, improve auditing processes, and deter future instances of fraud in charter schools, safeguarding public funds and maintaining confidence in the education system.

Notable quote:  “Every theft of funds from our public schools not only harms the students, but also undermines public confidence in our public education system.” – The Anti-Fraud Task Force

By John Fensterwald for Ed Source

California has a multibillion-dollar budget deficit. Here’s what you need to know

What’s happening: California faces a substantial budget deficit of up to $45 billion, prompting Governor Newsom to propose a $288 billion spending plan with significant cuts across various sectors.

Why it matters: The deficit challenges Democratic leaders, necessitating tough decisions to balance the budget without raising taxes, impacting state programs, healthcare, education, and infrastructure initiatives.

By Tran Nguyen for Associated Press

LAUSD union members rally, demand an end to alleged ‘Carvalho cuts’

What’s happening:  Teachers and employees of the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) are protesting outside the district headquarters against anticipated staffing and program cuts they attribute to Superintendent Alberto Carvalho, despite the district holding significant reserves.

Why it matters:  The protests highlight concerns about potential cuts to vital positions and services, such as special education support, campus aides, and mental health services, which could adversely affect students’ well-being and academic success.

Notable quote:  “We’re sending a clear, unified message to the superintendent and the school board that these deep cuts are unfair and unjust. We’ll all have to wear more hats. We’ll have to do even more work, and something’s got to give, and that really hurts the students.” – William Chavez, a social science teacher at Wilson High School

By Mallika Seshadri & Delilah Brumer for Ed Source

See more related coverage in this article Thousands rally over expected school cuts, a rebuke to LAUSD’s pledge to protect workers by Howard Blume for the Los Angeles Times

Sacramento school suspends journalism adviser after student paper printed Hitler quote

What’s happening:  The journalism adviser at C.K. McClatchy High School has been placed on paid administrative leave after the student newspaper printed a quote praising Adolf Hitler. The suspension has sparked controversy over free speech rights for student journalists and the appropriate response to offensive remarks on campus.

Why it matters:  The suspension raises questions about the balance between free speech protections and maintaining a respectful and inclusive school environment. It also highlights the role of journalism advisers and the autonomy of student editors in making editorial decisions.

Notable quote:  “Under California law, lawmakers have made clear that student editors are the ones that get to make the content decisions… Taking action against her… that’s clearly unlawful under California law.” – Mike Hiestand, Senior Legal Counsel at the Student Press Law Center,

By Ariane Lange for Sacramento Bee

State Superintendent Thurmond Awards $1.3 Billion in State Board-Approved Community Schools Implementation Grants

What’s happening:  State Superintendent Thurmond announces $1.3 billion in community schools grants, marking the largest investment nationwide in the California Community Schools Partnership Program.

Why it matters:  The grants aim to integrate academics, health services, and family engagement, breaking down barriers to enhance student achievement and well-being statewide.

Notable quote:  “Our Community Schools strategy is fundamentally about breaking down barriers in order to unlock the brilliance of every child.” – State Superintendent Tony Thurmond

California Department of Education Newsroom

When is a California college degree worth the cost? A new study has answers

What’s happening:  A new report compares the returns on investment for students attending different types of colleges in California, showing that public institutions often provide better value for low- and moderate-income students compared to many nonprofit private colleges and for-profit institutions.

Why it matters:  Understanding the economic value of a college degree is crucial for students and families making decisions about higher education, especially in terms of affordability and potential future earnings.

Notable quote:  “I feel very lucky. In high school, I was always stressing about, ‘Oh, man, I’m gonna have a whole bunch of debt racked up after college’.” – Nathan Reyes, a communications major at Cal State Los Angeles

By ikhail Zinshteyn for Cal Matters

California voters to weigh high school personal finance requirement

What’s happening:  California voters will likely decide in November whether high school students must complete a personal finance course to graduate. This initiative, while enjoying widespread support for teaching financial literacy, sparks debate over who should determine graduation requirements: elected officials or voters.

Why it matters:  The initiative raises fundamental questions about educational governance and curriculum decisions. Proponents argue that such a course is essential for students’ financial well-being, while opponents express concerns about the politicization of education policy and the crowded curriculum.

Notable quote:  “Most voters don’t know much about education policy, and having them decide what can be taught in schools is a bad idea… We already have a process in place for adopting curriculum.” – Morgan Polikoff, Education Professor at USC

By Jill Tucker & Sara Libb for San Francisco Chronicle

UCs vs. Ivy League: Are California’s universities the better investment?

What’s happening: Georgetown University’s analysis reveals attending UCs and CSUs in California offers higher returns on investment than non-California public universities, highlighting the financial benefits of these institutions.

Why it matters: The study underscores the value of California’s public universities in terms of post-college earnings, surpassing most other public institutions nationally.

Notable quote: “Universities offering degrees in lucrative fields excel in ROI.” – Martin Van Der Werf, Director at the Center on Education and the Workforce.

By Nami Sumida for San Francisco Chronicle

State Superintendent Tony Thurmond Announces 2024 California Finalists in Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching

What’s happening:  State Superintendent Tony Thurmond celebrates California’s math and science teaching excellence, honoring three finalists for the 2024 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

Why it matters:  The awards recognize outstanding educators shaping the future through innovative STEM instruction, highlighting their leadership and commitment to student success.

Notable quote:  “These amazing teachers model excellence in how we prepare California students for the challenges and advancements of the future.” – State Superintendent Tony Thurmond

California Department of Education Newsroom

Across The Nation

K-12 school leaders reject allegations that they let antisemitism run rampant

What’s happening: K-12 school leaders deny allowing rampant antisemitism, emphasizing education and discipline, amid congressional hearings on rising hate speech.

Why it matters: The rejection of allegations signifies a pivotal moment in addressing hate in schools, highlighting the urgency to combat antisemitism through comprehensive strategies.

Notable quote: “The true antidote to ignorance and bias is to teach.” – NYCDOE Chancellor David Banks

By Annie Ma & Collin Binkley for Associated Press via NBC News Bay Area

In related coverage, see How Public School Leaders Upstaged Republicans and the Ivy League by Alan Blinder, Annie Karni, Dana Goldstein for the New York Times

Virginia school district restores names of Confederate leaders to 2 schools

What’s happening: Shenandoah County’s school board votes 5-1 to restore Confederate names to two schools, reversing a 2020 decision amid national protests against racial injustice.

Why it matters: This reversal bucks a trend of Confederate name removals, reflecting shifts in local politics and renewing debates over historical symbols and racial sensitivity.

Notable quote: “The actions of a rogue police officer in Minneapolis… prompted a move to change the name.” – Kenny Wakeman, a lifelong county resident

By Nicole Killian for CBS Evening News

For more coverage see the following articles:  

A Virginia county board votes to restore Confederates’ names to schools by Bill Chappell for NPR News 

Schools in One Virginia County to Reinstate Confederate Names by Campbell Robertson for The New York Times

The Complex Factors Affecting English-Learner Graduation Rates

What’s happening: A recent study reveals disparities in high school graduation rates among English learners, influenced by factors like race, gender, and socioeconomic status.

Why it matters: Despite an overall increase in English-learner graduation rates, significant gaps persist, raising concerns about equity and access to quality education.

Notable quote: “We have to think about the intersectional identities that students hold.” – Michael Kieffer, NYU associate professor

By Ileana Najarro for Ed Week

Schools face diminished capacity to meet student mental health needs

What’s happening: Schools struggle to meet student mental health needs due to staffing shortages and budget constraints, as reported by NCES data.

Why it matters: Diminished capacity to provide mental health services affects student well-being and academic success, especially as pandemic-related support wanes.

Notable quote: “These challenges can be significant obstacles to student learning and well-being if not properly addressed.” – Peggy Carr, NCES Commissioner, 

By Naaz Modan for K-12 Dive

Judge Says State Can’t Block Teachers From Discussing Critical Race Theory

What’s happening: A federal judge ruled that Arkansas cannot block two high school teachers from discussing critical race theory, addressing concerns over free speech in education.

Why it matters: The decision signals a nuanced approach to balancing free expression and state regulations in the classroom amid ongoing debates over education policy.

Notable quote: “With this notch in our belt, we look forward to prosecuting this incredibly important case going forward.” – Mike Laux, attorney for the teachers and students 

By Tommy Metthe for Arkansas Democrat-Gazette via The Associated Press 

How the ‘Southlake Playbook’ brought partisan battles to America’s school boards

What’s happening:  The political turmoil in Southlake, Texas, over diversity programs in schools has sparked a nationwide trend of conservative activism infiltrating nonpartisan school boards. This phenomenon, known as the “Southlake Playbook,” has inspired similar movements in various suburbs, leading to deeply divided communities and impacting what children are taught about race, gender, and sexuality.

Why it matters:  The Southlake Playbook exemplifies the broader polarization of American education, with conservative groups mobilizing to reshape school board compositions and curricula. This trend raises concerns about the politicization of education, threats to academic freedom, and the potential long-term consequences for students’ learning experiences.

Notable quote:  “Parents in Southlake taught parents across the country that you can be called a racist and you can be called a homophobe, knowing that none of that is true, and you can keep standing… People across the country are looking for leadership. They’re looking for a blueprint.” – Leigh Wambsganss, Co-founder of Southlake Families PAC

By Mike Hixenbaugh for Chalkbeat

When are students ready for Algebra I?

What’s happening: NWEA advises schools to use assessment data and updated staff guidance to determine when students are ready for Algebra I.

Why it matters: Algebra I readiness impacts future math success and college/career readiness, highlighting the importance of accurate placement.

Notable quote: “Students turning 13 or 14 years old is not an automatic marker that they are ready to take Algebra 1.” – Scott Peters, NWEA director of research consulting partnerships

By Kara Arundel for K-12 Dive

Education secretary apologizes for FAFSA delays on Capitol Hill

What’s happening: Education Secretary Miguel Cardona faces scrutiny on Capitol Hill over FAFSA delays, apologizing for the setbacks and pledging to improve access to higher education.

Why it matters: The delays in the FAFSA process raise concerns about equitable access to financial aid and highlight the need for efficient administrative procedures in education.

Notable quote: “We’re committed to getting it right and making sure we open doors to access to higher education for more students across our country.” – Education Secretary Miguel Cardona

By Basil John for KRON4 News

FAFSA relief? Dept. of Education launches $50 million program to boost lagging federal student aid applications

What’s happening:  Amid record-low FAFSA completion rates and systemic glitches, the Department of Education unveils a $50 million grant to boost federal student aid applications.

Why it matters:  Persistent issues with the revamped FAFSA system threaten college enrollment and financial aid accessibility, prompting urgent intervention and funding.

Notable quote:  “The botched implementation could cause colleges to see a 20% drop in enrollment this year.” – Utah Rep. Burgess Owens,

By Molly Gibbs for East Bay Times

Straight F’s, second call for Education Secretary Cardona to resign

What’s happening: North Carolina congresswoman Virginia Foxx harshly grades Education Secretary Cardona, urging his resignation due to failures in Title IX, financial oversight, and more.

Why it matters: Foxx’s critique underscores concerns about federal overreach in education and its impact on students, institutions, and government accountability.

Notable quote: “On all the broad strokes, you have a failing grade… Education is done best when handled at the local level.” – Rep. Virginia Foxx

By Alan Wooten for The Center Square via Chalkboard News

Arkansas’ Shrinking City: A Charter Network Transforms Schools in Pine Bluff | Friendship Schools Bring Hope to the City ‘No One Wanted to Touch’

What’s happening: Friendship Aspire Academy, a charter network, is revitalizing education in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, boasting academic success and diverse, supportive teaching staff.

Why it matters: Despite Pine Bluff’s challenges, including economic decline and safety concerns, Friendship Aspire instills hope, empowers students, and contributes to community revitalization.

Notable quote: “Our kids have an environment where they feel like they matter. Every kid here has a voice.” – Kazmira Davis, Pine Bluff parent

By Greg Toppo for The 74

Florida ranked #1 in nation for education, DeSantis takes issue with the reason why

What’s happening: Florida ranks #1 in the nation for education, but Governor DeSantis challenges U.S. News & World Report’s portrayal of the state’s success.

Why it matters: DeSantis disputes the characterization of Florida’s education policies as contentious, highlighting a clash with media narratives and defending controversial measures as common sense.

Notable quote: “When the media says you do things that are controversial, that just means you’re doing things that they don’t like, it doesn’t mean it’s actually controversial.” – Governor Ron DeSantis

By CBS News Miami

Thousands Of Illinois Youth At Risk of Losing Access to After-School Programs

What’s happening: Up to 40,000 Illinois youths face losing after-school programs due to funding shortages, prompting urgent calls for legislative action.

Why it matters: Closure of these programs would disrupt academic support and recreational activities for vulnerable children, exacerbating existing disparities in education.

Notable quote: “We literally only have weeks left before programs have to shut their doors. Staff will be laid off and families will be in crisis.” – Susan Stanton, Executive Director of ACT Now

By Peter Hancock for The 74

Parents, teachers feel abandoned by sudden closure of Newark charter school

What’s happening: Parents and teachers express feeling abandoned by the sudden closure of New Horizons School in Newark, amidst financial troubles and lack of communication from Principal Victor Dawson.

Why it matters: The closure leaves families and staff in turmoil, raising concerns about financial transparency in charter schools and the impact on educators and students.

Notable quote: “To be here every day without pay, they’re our heroes right now for these remaining kids.” – Parent Caroline Siebert

By Damian Trujillo for NBC News

What do you think?

More Comments