March 22

The “Ed News” is pleased to welcome Tyler Reich, the new Assistant Vice President for Alumni Engagement at Oxy, to our alumni education news and discussion group.
The highly successful and informative ALOED panel about the Oxy credential program from Feb. 7 is now available for viewing (57:07 minutes) on YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48K6iQ0akrs
And now to the news.
“Education is no substitute for intelligence.”  ―    Frank Herbert
   The last edition of the “Ed News” detailed a proposal by Gov. Brown to shift adult education spending from the K-12 system to the community colleges.  One small problem.  The plan was voted down by a State Assembly subcommittee on Tuesday.  However, as this piece from the SI&A CABINET REPORT suggests, that doesn’t totally derail the idea:  http://www.siacabinetreport.com/articles/viewarticle.aspx?article=2740
   As the student body at America’s public schools is made up of more and more members of minority groups the number of teachers from those groups remains quite small.  The New York Times highlights a study released Wednesday from the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education (AACTE) that looks at this issue and others related to teacher education programs:  http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/20/education/teaching-degree-minority-enrollment-lags-study-shows.html?ref=todayspaper&_r=3&  You can read the official press release for the report.  It contains a link to the full study (28 pages) titled “The Changing Teacher Preparation Profession:”  http://aacte.org/news-room/press-releases/aacte-releases-first-national-data-report-on-teacher-preparation-profession.html
   Last year the California legislature defeated, by one vote, a bill that would have accelerated the process for dismissing teachers accused of serious offenses against children.  The Assembly member who cast that vote has now introduced an alternative bill to deal with the issue.  EdSource has the details:  http://www.edsource.org/today/2013/alternative-bill-to-speed-up-teacher-dismissals-introduced/28813#.UUoDAVv5nye
   Monica Garcia is currently serving her sixth year as president of the LAUSD Board of Education.  A new rule passed by a narrow 4-3 vote of the board on Tuesday will now limit how long a president can serve to no more than two one-year terms.  You can read all about it in this brief item from the L.A. Times website:  http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2013/03/la-school-board-targets-garcia-with-term-limits-vote.html  The board also approved on Tuesday the creation of a new “pilot” program to teach middle school students about entrepreneurship.  A location for the new school on the westside has not been determined reports yesterday’s Timeshttp://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-lausd-school-20130321,0,1270439.story
   George Skelton, in his column in yesterday’s L.A. Times, makes the case for bringing back shop classes, now referred to as “career tech,” to the high school curriculum:  http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-cap-education-20130321,0,3363165,full.column
   Attorneys for several students allegedly abused by a LAUSD teacher at De La Torre Elementary in Wilmington are claiming that district officials knew of the activity for an extended period of time.  Today’s Times has all the details: http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-0322-lausd-abuse-20130322,0,478183.story
   Q: Do you know how many states have “parent-trigger” laws?  A: 7  Q: Which state had the first one?  A: California (surprised?)  Q: Want an interesting history of the issue?  A: This story from EDUCATION WEEK has the background and describes how 12 more states on considering adopting them:  http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2013/03/21/26trigger_ep.h32.html?tkn=WYXFJWv1kvyozReabzLfW2AxGOjTVlPM3UjD&cmp=clp-edweek
   Valerie Strauss asks (and answers) the question: “How Big is the School Counselor Shortage?  Big.”  The number of pupils per counselor may shock you.  Q:  Guess which state has the highest?  A:  California (surprised?):  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/wp/2013/03/20/how-big-is-the-school-counselor-shortage-big/
   The San Gabriel Valley Tribune reports that the latest California Dept. of Ed. (CDE) recommended reading list for K-12 students includes some titles about LGBT and immigration issues.  This article contains a link to the catalog of titles published by the CDE:  http://www.sgvtribune.com/news/ci_22834509/new-public-school-reading-list-includes-lgbt-friendly
   The issue about earning online credit for college and university degree programs has been in the news lately in California.  The Contra Costa Times has a short piece about the UC Academic Senate’s strong opposition to it:  http://www.contracostatimes.com/breaking-news/ci_22832202/uc-faculty-leaders-blast-bill-internet-courses?source=rss
   One education reform that has caused a lot of controversy is to close under-performing or under-utilized schools.  That’s happened in Washington, D.C., and soon in Chicago and Philadelphia.  Valerie Strauss decries that practice and offers an alternative to outright closure in her blog for the Washington Post:  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/wp/2013/03/22/instead-of-closing-schools-how-about-this/
   A newly released study finds that bullying of LGBT students is common in schools in California.  This article, from The Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, describes how various districts in southern California deal with the issue:  http://www.dailybulletin.com/news/ci_22843705/bullying-gay-students-rampant-california-study-says?source=rss#ixzz2OIghbC28
   And finally, with the NCAA basketball tournament in full swing (known as “March Madness”) the Friday UCLA IDEA “Themes in the News” looks at the importance of students getting a college education whether they are athletes or not.  It provides some interesting statistics to bolster the title of the piece “Education Pays:”  http://us1.campaign-archive2.com/?u=40770a674de4ce8427a9a621b&id=5ab54d0e92&e=f7d7cb8d5d

 

Dave Alpert (’71) Chief Commissar

 

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