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Monday, March 12, 2018


White House plan includes gun training for teachers
President Donald Trump’s plan to combat school shootings will include helping states pay for firearms training for teachers and a call to improve the background check system. But Trump’s plan will not include a push to increase the minimum age for purchasing assault weapons or an embrace of more comprehensive background checks, as Trump has at times advocated. Instead, a new federal commission on school safety will examine the age issue, as well as a long list of others topics, as part of a longer-term look at school safety and violence.

Nationwide student walkouts over guns poses balancing act for schools
As schools around the country brace for student walkouts following the deadly shooting in Parkland, Florida, principals and superintendents are scrambling to perform a delicate balancing act: How to let thousands of students exercise their First Amendment rights while not disrupting school and not pulling administrators into the raging debate over gun control.

Former part-time Tesoro High teacher sentenced in Fontana child porn case
A former part-time teacher at Tesoro High in Rancho Santa Margarita was sentenced Friday under the terms of a plea bargain reached in a child pornography case. Keh-Tai Culbreath was sentenced to six months in county jail and three years probation by Judge R. Glenn Yabuno at Rancho Cucamonga Superior Court.

Al Mijares: Working proactively to protect our schools, students and staff
More than anything, we owe it to our students to provide them with safe and secure campuses where learning thrives. Moreover, we owe it to parents to return their children each day just as healthy and happy as when they arrived. Yet we have seen so many instances nationally where acts of violence break the sanctity of school communities, including horrific tragedies like the recent mass shooting that took the lives of 17 people at a high school in Florida.


Laguna Beach students compete in Destination Imagination challenge event
Thurston Middle School in Laguna Beach hosted a regional tournament for Destination Imagination on Saturday.

Spirit Run will return for its 35th year to Newport Beach’s Fashion Island
About a dozen races are available to runners and walkers of all ages and abilities on Sunday, March 18 during the 35th annual Spirit Run at Fashion Island in Newport Beach.


LAUSD workers begin strike-authorization vote
Thousands of Los Angeles Unified School District workers represented by the Service Employees International Union will begin voting today on whether to authorize the union to call a strike in the midst of contract talks. Taking part in the LAUSD strike authorization vote will be district cafeteria workers, custodians, bus drivers, special education assistants and other workers represented by SEIU Local 99, which has accused the district of unfair labor practices “and bad-faith bargaining.”


Lullaby of algebra: How mixing music and math helps engage students
Jami Jorgensen is the human jukebox of quadratic equations. “Anything that’s an algorithm, I have a song for it,” said the energetic middle-school math teacher in Hayward Unified, in the east Bay Area. “I must have 100 songs. At least.” Jorgensen, who teaches 7th– and 8th–grade math, leads her students in ditties, chants and dance moves to help them remember basic formulas in algebra and geometry.


Misalignment of NGSS and grad standards stalls execution
A lack of access to instructional materials, science equipment and credentialed teachers has stalled implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards in California, new research shows. Further complicating the landscape is the fact that the state’s minimum high school graduation requirements include only two years of instruction in life and physical sciences, while the new standards require a minimum of three years, the Public Policy Institute of California reported last week.


Six questions — and answers — about rights and responsibilities during the National School Walkout
Students nationwide, including many across Orange County, are expected to participate in Wednesday’s National School Walkout to protest gun violence. Although Orange County’s public schools are not sponsoring these actions, many school leaders are working with students, law enforcement agencies and community groups to help ensure that all students, whether they participate in the protests or not, will remain safe, and disruption to instruction will be minimized. These measures include keeping campuses closed to outside groups and others who are not authorized to be on school grounds during school hours.


Transgender Teachers, Long Isolated, Are Finding Strength In Numbers
Awareness of gender diversity has been growing. And schools in particular have been a battleground for gender rights. In interviews with 15 individuals, and in an NPR Ed survey of dozens more trans and gender-nonconforming educators around the country, teachers told us they are becoming more visible, more active, more organized.

Rethinking How Students With Dyslexia Are Taught To Read
Dyslexia is the most common learning disability, affecting tens of millions of people in the United States. But getting help for children who have it in public school can be a nightmare. People with dyslexia have an especially hard time learning to read because their brains are wired in a way that makes understanding the relationship between sounds and letters difficult. Research shows that they learn to read better when they are explicitly taught the ways that sounds and letters correspond. And research shows that even students without dyslexia learn better this way.

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