Friday, October 07, 2011


from FCMAT NEWS| Fiscal Crisis and Management Assistance Team

Anaheim Union kills color-coded ID program

Anaheim Union High School District on Thursday killed a controversial incentive program that assigned students color-coded ID cards and planners based on state test scores, required those who performed poorly to stand in a separate lunch line and awarded the others with discounts.

School closure plan trickling out

The names of some campuses on a tentative closure list have trickled out to the public — from official and unofficial sources — since the San Diego Unified School District announced last month that 10 schools could be shuttered next year from a pool of about 30 that meet closure criteria.

Coast Unified district chief investigated over school lunch program

The family of a North Coast school district superintendent applied for and was accepted into a school lunch program intended for low-income students, prompting a district investigation.

Salinas school's parents paid kids to boost test scores

Adults used cash and gift cards to induce better test scores from students at Bardin Elementary School in Salinas — and the incentives worked, parents and officials said Wednesday.

Long Beach USD pulls plan for 7 furlough days

The LBUSD in contract negotiations with the Teachers Association of Long Beach last week withdrew its proposal to implement seven unpaid furlough days. The district and the teachers' union have been in negotiations since March.

Principal defends color-coded IDs; expert 'horrified'

An educational psychologist who specializes in student motivation is calling an Orange County high school's system of grouping students by test score "one of the worst ideas ever" to promote learning, while the principal of a neighboring high school with a nearly identical program is defending the practice as extremely effective.

New database tracks California foster students' records

Just a few years ago, Sacramento County foster students would often be put in the wrong grade level or in classes they had already completed when they enrolled in a new school. Now foster students across the state are benefiting from a database called Foster Focus, developed by the Sacramento County Office of Education.

School play on hold over script concerns

Concerns over the content of the classic play “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” led Palm Desert High School officials to cancel the production pending a review of the script.

Brown signs bill limiting access to school safety strategies

Now required to be made publicly available, school safety plans that detail emergency response strategies can be kept secret starting Jan. 1. Gov. Jerry Brown has signed legislation sponsored by San Diego Unified School District administrators and security forces, who contend that laying out the plans for all to see endangers students and staff.

Districts to pay teachers based in part on their students’ test scores

In what is thought to be the first experiment of its kind in the state, two California school districts will give teachers bonuses of up to $5,000 based in part on measuring how well their students score on standardized tests this year.

Kirp: Why would California leave $100 million on the table for early education?

With the Oct. 19 deadline for applying for the preschool version of Race to the Top rapidly approaching, California officials have yet to announce whether they will apply for a $100 million early learning federal grant for which the state is eligible. Why the hesitation? This should be a no-brainer.

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