CA Education Policy News Update

Jan 28th, 2011

CA Education Policy News Update

By: Mona Vakilifathi | 04:01 PM

In addition to the Tuesday’s release of California’s below-average performance in the sciences on the National Assessment of Educational Progress  (NAEP)  results , as reported by the San Bernardino Sun, there were several updates this week in California education.
 
The use of the ”parent-trigger law” in the Compton Unified School District has been attracting attention throughout the nation as a group of parents used the law in December to file a petition against of the conditions of McKinley Elementary, which The Huffington Post  reports as being one of the worst-performing schools in California. According to the L.A. Times, this law allows petitioners to force a school to shut down, replace the teaching staff, or convert the current school to a charter school. The parents in this case intend to convert McKinley Elementary into a charter school. The L.A. Daily News  reports that although this is not the only attempt to use the parent-trigger law in California, the Thoughts on Public Education blog states that the progress of the parents’ petition in Compton Unified has initiated the discussion surrounding the role parents should play in school reform and in their children’s education on a day-to-day basis.
 
Recently, California Watch reports that there has been some discussion as to whether the parent-trigger law should be modified to become more transparent. Additionally, the Thoughts on Public Education  blog and the L.A. Times  report the need for further discussion among the State Board of Education members regarding the provisions of this law before it is put into effect. Currently, this issue has been delayed by district’s insistence to verify the signatures of the original petition, as reported by the Thoughts on Public Education blog and the Long Beach Press-Telegram , and the parent’s claim to intimidation from teachers, as mentioned by the Long Beach Press-Telegram   and The Sacramento Bee. The Thoughts on Public Education  blog provides insight into these controversies and also provides a link to an online discussion through the National Journal regarding the appropriate level of parent involvement in school reform.