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Thursday, November 18, 2021


Virtual forum to explore history, contributions and challenges of Native Americans
A virtual forum presented by the Orange County Department of Education will celebrate the deep histories, dynamic cultures and enduring contributions of Native Americans and explore how educational systems can more purposely meet the needs of Indigenous students. In recognition of Native American Heritage Month, Orange County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Al Mijares will host the latest in a series of online colloquiums based on the theme “Know My Name, Face and Story” from 3:30 to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 30. Featuring a panel of distinguished speakers, the event will leverage personal stories, unique insight and historic perspectives on the first peoples of Orange County and the United States.

Ocean View debuts its latest school modernization project
The Ocean View School District has officially unveiled a $26 million modernization project at one of its middle schools. During an afternoon ceremony on Nov. 15, the district celebrated the grand re-opening of Marine View Middle School, which underwent a year-long, complete overhaul of its campus. The middle school, located in Huntington Beach, opened in August, when students returned from summer break. But Tuesday marked the official dedication, featuring a symbolic ribbon-cutting ceremony and remarks by Ocean View Superintendent Dr. Carol Hansen and local dignitaries, followed by a tour of the campus. Ocean View school board members, Huntington Beach Mayor Kim Carr and Assemblywoman Janet Nguyen were also among the event’s attendees.


Placentia-Yorba Linda school board revise proposed ban on critical race theory topics
Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified school board members spent Tuesday night making additions and changes to a proposed ban on the teaching of critical race theory in the district’s schools, but appear set to put it in place once it is ready.


LAUSD ramps up efforts to get students vaccinated
With just days left before a deadline for students in the Los Angeles Unified School District to receive their first COVID-19 vaccine dose, the nation’s second-largest K-12 system is ramping up efforts to get more shots into children’s arms.


Race in the classroom? Ethnic studies have been taught at Sacramento schools for years
Public and charter high school students in California will soon be required to take an ethnic studies course before graduation, a mandate that marks the end of a protracted political debate and charts a new course in the education of millions of students in one of the most diverse states in the country. But in Sacramento, embracing the new requirement may be relatively easy: Several school districts in the area have for years been teaching ethnic studies courses, often one of the more popular classes among students and a reflection of the region’s increasingly multiracial makeup. “Ethnic studies was really about affirming identity, and about the history that was left out of history books,” said Susan Nakaoka, a California State University, Sacramento professor who studies critical race theory.


S.F. schools see $123 million windfall after final ruling in tax case as district faces big shortfall
San Francisco schools will get $123.4 million collected from property owners that has been frozen for three years while the state’s courts decided whether the parcel tax was legally authorized by voters.


Corona-Norco parents are trying to oust longtime school board member Jose Lalas, citing reasons such as his support of mask and coronavirus vaccine mandates.
Corona-Norco school board member Jose Lalas, who represents Trustee Area, was served with recall papers at the Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2021, meeting. The 70-year-old trustee was re-elected in 2020 to represent Area 1, which includes west Corona and the adjoining unincorporated county area. Many Corona-Norco parents, district educators and staff have protested the state’s mask and COVID-19 vaccine mandates during school board meetings and outside district offices. At the meeting, parents took issue with Lalas’ support of the mandates and also said he pushes the concept of critical race theory.


$20 billion more projected in early forecast for 2022-23 funding for K-14 schools
In what usually is an accurate annual preview of the governor’s state budget released in early January, the state Legislative Analyst’s Office is projecting a double-digit increase in billions of dollars and percentages in 2022-23 in education funding under Proposition 98. That’s the formula that determines the minimum funding allocation for K-14 schools. Schools and community colleges can expect an additional $20 billion in 2022-23, which will follow a record level of funding this year. Even the usually restrained LAO calls this good fortune “extraordinary.”

Charter schools continue to enroll fewer students with disabilities, report finds
Charter schools enroll significantly fewer students with disabilities than traditional public schools, although students with disabilities at charter schools are more likely to be in general education classrooms, according to a new report by the Center for Learner Equity. The report is based on the 2020 figures from the federal Education Department’s  Civil Rights Data Collection. It shows that the percentage of students with disabilities in charter schools fell from 10.8% to 10.7% over the past four years, even while overall charter enrollment increased. In traditional public schools, students with disabilities made up 13.3% of the enrollment. The report also looks at discipline, demographics and other details related to students with disabilities.


Turlock students told to leave school board meeting because adults refused to wear masks
Turlock Unified School District trustees asked students to leave their board meeting on Tuesday evening because some adults refused to wear masks. All adults must wear face coverings inside school buildings when students are present, according to state public health rules.


Ethnic Studies Comes Into The Classroom And Onto The Streets
If you grew up in California, there’s a good chance that sometime in elementary school, you made a model mission — a tiny rendering of the 21 religious outposts set up throughout the state under Spanish colonial rule. Asbelian Mora, a junior at Mountain View High School in El Monte, recalls her mini-mission being exceptionally pretty. When Asbelian was a child, she was told that the missionaries had "saved the souls" of the Indigenous people who'd been forced to work there. Alfred Mendoza, her ethnic studies teacher, helped her gain a new perspective.


Whittier City School District snags Brea superintendent as its new top boss
Before the hiring will become official, a contract must be negotiated, board President Linda Small said in a Wednesday a telephone interview. Whittier School District’s Board of Education voted on Tuesday, Nov. 16 to hire Brea-Olinda Unified School District Superintendent Brad Mason as its new top boss. Mason, a 32-year educator, has been superintendent for Brea since 2015 and will succeed Maria Martinez Poulin, who resigned, on June 30. The district has had co-interim superintendents  Alan Rasmussen and Richard Tauer, both of whom work for Education Support Services Group.

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