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Friday, June 11, 2021


Newport-Mesa’s phoenixes fly to the future for Cloud Campus’ first graduation
Thirty of the Newport-Mesa Unified School District’s Cloud Campus phoenixes flew the digital coop on Wednesday as its inaugural graduating class said their goodbyes and looked ahead to their futures lying just beyond their computer screens and homes. District trustees voted in April to continue the 100% online virtual campus for grades TK-12 through the next school year, arguing that it will provide an online option for parents and students that are still hesitant to return to classes in-person.


Sacramento City Unified teachers, staff vote no confidence in superintendent
Sacramento City Unified School District teachers and classified staff overwhelmingly voted no confidence in Superintendent Jorge Aguilar, claiming fiscal mismanagement and failure to provide services.


Bay Area school reopenings still have cloud of uncertainty
Not reopening fully for all students is not an option, said Dr. Scott Morrow, San Mateo County health officer, citing increases in anxiety, depression, self-harm, suicidality and alcohol and drug use among youth during distance learning.


‘Children deserve to be taught’: Teachers in 22 cities are planning protests over laws restricting racism lessons in schools
Growing up in Arkansas, Jared Middleton remembers learning only the basic facts of events with heavy racial dynamics, such as the Civil War and the civil rights movement.  It wasn’t until George Floyd’s murder in May 2020 that Middleton, a high school special education teacher in Springdale, Arkansas, began to scrutinize history lessons that didn't include multiple perspectives or discussions of lasting implications. He wants his own son to get "a more complete history" of how the nation was founded, he said.


LA Unified expands early literacy program
After months of distance learning, literacy assessments at the beginning of the 2020-21 school year showed faltering reading levels among Los Angeles Unified’s youngest students. But a new program aims to change that. Primary Promise was launched as a pilot program this past August to boost early literacy rates among young students attending L.A. Unified schools. According to the school district, reading scores have improved among all students who have joined, prompting a massive expansion of the program.

Students with disabilities need extra support as schools reopen, groups say
Schools should consider extending the school year, increasing tutoring and taking other steps — especially over the summer — to help students enrolled in special education catch up academically as they return to campus, advocacy groups said this week. High-quality academic support, assessments, activities and camps are among the services that schools should offer to students with disabilities after months of distance learning, according to the recommendations by the National Center for Learning Disabilities and research by NWEA, a research organization that focuses on education assessments.


Kern High School District's summer school expands to over 20,000 students
Finals just wrapped up in the Kern High School District this week, but it won’t be a long break for many. Summer school kicks off on Monday, and there will be more students and teachers than in recent memory.


LAUSD, teachers union reach tentative labor deal for fall campus instruction
The union representing Los Angeles Unified School District teachers announced Thursday it has reached a tentative agreement with the district for a return to traditional in-person instruction for the 2021-22 school year. The proposed deal between United Teachers Los Angeles and the district includes standards for continued COVID-19 testing, mask-wearing and other safety protocols. The proposal is contingent on a vote of the union's full membership, and by the LAUSD Board of Education.

Strong gains, quick losses: new research on students with disabilities finds conventional data hides both opportunity and risk
A new report from the assessment group NWEA underscores two findings that could inform how schools support children with disabilities going forward. Students receiving special education services often make more academic growth during a single school year than their typically abled peers, but are at substantially higher risk of losing ground during summer break.

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