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Thursday, March 15, 2018


Southern California students walk out to honor Parkland victims, press for change in gun laws, improved school safety
Using handmade signs, chants and phone calls to members of Congress, young people around Southern California turned fear and frustration into activism Wednesday, joining peers nationwide to protest gun violence in schools. The national school walkout — held a month to the day after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida — was observed by thousands of students from the region.

Santa Ana and Florida students Skype about gun safety
Although 2,700 miles apart, the pair of classrooms mirrored one another on screen – whiteboard-covered walls, fluorescent lighting tucked inside ceiling panels and crowded with desks practically touching. The students also had much in common, including the speech and debate classes. Their debate teachers – Santa Ana High’s Corin Serrano and Nova High’s Courtney Chipman in Florida – arranged for the students to Skype on Wednesday, March 14, after the National School Walkout earlier in the day.

San Clemente High students walk out to voice demands for stricter gun laws
For 15-year-old Esther Mafouta, it was simple. “We don’t want to be killed,” she told a group of more than 1,000 students at San Clemente High School on Wednesday, March 14. We need to control guns. Youth is demanding a change. Get out and make your voices heard.” Mafouta, a basketball player on the Triton girls’ varsity team, was among at least five speakers who took part in a 17-minute rally held in the high school’s upper quad during National Walkout Day.

Tustin students tackle climate change questions
Columbus Tustin Middle School students spent the first part of their school year studying climate change. So they knew a bit about what they were saying when they hosted a climate change summit March 8 on campus. More than 200 students in grades six, seven and eight, presented projects during the event organized by the school’s magnet science program.

Teen charged with sexually assaulting woman and underage girls, stabbing one, near Edison High in Huntington Beach
An 18-year-old high school student was charged Tuesday, March 13, with sexually assaulting a woman and two underage girls — one of whom he stabbed — in separate incidents that happened near Edison High School in Huntington Beach. Michael Anthony Meer, who attends Fountain Valley High School, was on roller blades when he encountered each of the victims, said Huntington Beach police Officer Angela Bennett.


LA homeless services agency takes an interest in Sylmar students’ project
When an official from a major public agency came to their school Wednesday to congratulate them on their project to help the homeless, 16-year-old Sylmar resident Brian Hernandez cut right to the chase. “We want to turn this into reality sooner than later,” Hernandez told Silvana Caruana, the community engagement coordinator for the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority’s San Fernando Valley and Santa Clarita region.


California students join thousands nationwide in historic school walkout
Wednesday, one month after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., thousands of students across California and the U.S. walked out of school as part of an unprecedented effort to force Congress to change the nation’s gun laws. Beginning at 10 a.m., students from elementary schools to colleges left their classrooms for 17 minutes — one minute for each of the people killed on Feb. 14.

State Board postpones vote on revising California's education plan to meet federal requirements
California could be close to resolving differences with the federal government over the education plan it is required to submit to receive federal funding for low-income students. But the State Board of Education on Wednesday put off voting on revisions that its staff have negotiated with federal officials to satisfy the requirements of the Every Student Succeeds Act, the law that replaced the No Child Left Behind Act. And some board members indicated they might not fully support the compromise and instead might press for waivers from the law.

Ed-Data offers new ways to look at Smarter Balanced test scores
New graphs unveiled on Ed-Data today make it possible to see three years of Smarter Balanced test results for a variety of student groups, including economically disadvantaged students and students with disabilities as well as by race/ethnicity, gender and grade. California now has three years of test results — those administered in the spring of 2015, 2016 and 2017 — but until recently they have not been easily available for viewing in a multiyear format. It has also been difficult to look at scores for more than one school or district at a time.


SBE still defiant, but looking to compromise with Trump
Still facing a potentially costly showdown with federal officials, the California State Board of Education expressed some optimism Wednesday that a compromise could be worked out over the state plan for complying with the Every Child Succeeds Act. California is one of the last states still without approval from the U.S. Education Secretary for its ESSA plan, which regulators have flagged primarily for failing to meet the department’s interpretation of federal law as it relates to school accountability.


LBHS Students Join National Walk Out
Laguna Beach High School students found themselves torn between two options for participating in Wednesday’s nationwide walkout to protest gun violence—stay in the school’s quad and take part in an organized break period, or march out of the school and join a more politically-charged peaceful protest at the corner of Park Avenue.


Students throughout the U.S., Orange County take part in protests
Students from across the country participated Wednesday in a National School Walkout to protest gun violence. They included an untold number from Orange County schools participating in a variety of activities. Some took to the streets outside their campuses, carrying signs and chanting. Others attended special assemblies hosted by schools in an effort to give students a voice while keeping them safely on campus.

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