CA Education Policy News Update

Apr 18th, 2011

CA Education Policy News Update

By: Mona Vakilifathi | 10:04 AM

Budget Updates
 
Governor Brown continues to travel throughout the state to promote and generate support among educators for a special election this June regarding his budget proposal and the tax extensions, as reported by The Sacramento Bee, in two articles here and here; the Press-Telegram; the L.A. Times; and The San Francisco Chronicle in two articles, here and here. After his first visit in Riverside, Brown is making a visit today to meet with educators in Stockton, as reported by the Contra Costa Times, the L.A. Times PolitiCal blog, and The Sacramento Bee Capitol Alert blog. As the L.A. Times PolitiCal blog reports, Brown has intended to visit areas with a large proportion of Republican constituents as well as associations affiliated with Republican legislators to have these constituents force their Republican legislators to support, or at least negotiate with, Brown’s budget proposal and special election. The previously-mentioned L.A Times article reports that Republican legislators are also going on tour throughout the state to generate support in opposing the tax extensions.
 
California Teachers Association’s “State of Emergency” & Budget Recommendations
 
This week, the California Teachers Association (CTA) declared a “State of Emergency” and published a website discussing different ways to protest the budget cuts in Sacramento and throughout California’s schools, as reported by The Sacramento Bee and the KQED Capital Notes blog. In addition, as reported by The Sacramento Bee Capitol Alert blog, The Sacramento Bee, and The San Francisco Chronicle, the CTA is also asking for Brown and the legislature to pass the tax extensions through a legislative vote rather than through a public vote, as the special election regarding these taxes would take place after June at the earliest. Assembly Speaker John Perez agrees with this recommendation, as mentioned by the L.A. Times PolitiCal blog, but Brown remains intent on conducting a special election regarding these tax extensions.
 
Release of LAUSD Value-Added Scores, Seismic Retrofitting of Schools, and “Day of Class Action” for Higher Education
 
As reported by the L.A. Times and The Sacramento Bee, students, faculty, and staff from all 23 California State University (CSU) campuses participated in the “Day of Class Action” by  holding activities in protest against the state’s budget cuts of the CSU system as well as the rising tuition costs.
 
The L.A. Times reported that the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) released on Tuesday the value-added results of its schools per the average student performance at each school. The school-level reports can be found here at the LAUSD website. Next month, according to the L.A. Times article, LAUSD intends to release confidential student improvement scores to teachers based on the individual teacher’s performance. Additionally, the district is negotiating with the district-level union to use these scores as one component of every teacher’s formal evaluation.
 
California Watch has been reporting a series entitled “On Shaky Ground”  regarding the conditions of California’s public schools and how many of the state’s schools are not adequately prepared for a possible earthquake. These stories also detail the lack of oversight as well as the difficulty for many of these schools to attain the funds to properly retrofit their buildings. The latest story details the response to this series by supporters such as the California Parent Teacher Association (PTA) and the Professional Engineers in California Government.