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Tuesday, September 6, 2022


Anaheim Union High School District celebrates fifth anniversary of Arabic language program
Not too far from a three mile stretch in Anaheim that is known to many as Little Arabia, there are students attending Western High School who are learning the Arabic language. The 2022-23 school year marks the fifth anniversary of the Anaheim Union High School District’s Arabic World Language program.


Are your kids safe at school? Vital questions for parents to ask
McAuliffe Elementary School in Riverside was wrapped in a 6-foot-high, chain-link fence and monitored by a campus supervisor — and still an assailant got in and groped a student in a restroom. Taft Elementary in Santa Ana was outfitted with high-tech safety equipment — and still an intruder pushed his way in, attempted to use the restroom and then drove over three children while fleeing. “Staff don’t feel safe, our parents don’t feel safe, even after (the killings in) Uvalde,” said Valerie Amezcua, a board member for the Santa Ana Unified School District. “It’s sad, but that’s where we are today.”


In lawsuit over distance learning, parents accuse San Diego schools of violating Constitution
Five of San Diego County’s largest school districts and one charter school were sued last week by parents who say the schools failed to provide adequate instruction to their children during distance learning two years ago in what they allege was a violation of their constitutional rights.

Substitutes, summer school and bonuses: Inside San Diego schools’ COVID-19 stimulus spending
San Diego Unified used at least $8.2 million of COVID-19 aid dollars on hiring new teachers. It spent at least $17.4 million on employing substitute teachers. But it spent a larger, $122 million sum on payroll where it’s harder to tell exactly how it related to the pandemic or learning recovery.


With COVID restrictions behind them, teens relish the high school experience
California was the last state to resume in-person learning after school closures in 2020 and among the few to impose and last to lift statewide school mask mandates. But this year, desks aren’t spread apart, students aren’t summoned for random COVID-19 tests and masks at most schools are optional. Most students and teachers aren't wearing masks anymore, and there have been fewer reported COVID-19 outbreaks even though the CDC says virus transmission rates remain high.


Dozens of community colleges offer remedial classes; bill to ban them awaits Newsom’s signature
Remedial education at California’s community colleges is facing a death blow. Awaiting Gov. Gavin Newsom’s signature is a bill that would mostly ban remedial math and English classes, which can’t transfer with credit to four-year universities. If he signs the bill, it will affect more than 40 colleges that continue to offer those classes five years after the state told them to allow students to bypass the courses.


How burnout is driving LAUSD teachers from classrooms
Pandemic-related stressors, low wages and lack of respect are reasons educators in L.A. and nationally often cite for leaving.


How one Oakland school is using California's billion-dollar investment in student mental health
California is investing billions of new dollars, on top of state and federal pandemic relief funds. Bridges Academy at Melrose, which is a public school, found a way to leverage the money to maximize impact, pivoting from crisis management to prevention.


Ransomware Attack Freezes LAUSD Online Systems — But Schools Will Still Open Tuesday
An “external cyber attack” took down many of Los Angeles Unified School District’s online systems over the weekend, leaving a wide variety of applications — from email to the Google Classroom suite — inaccessible to most teachers and threatening to create a rocky return to campus after the holiday break. “Despite this significant disruption to our system’s infrastructure, schools will open on Tuesday, September 6 as scheduled,” LAUSD officials said late Monday in a statement confirming the attack.

Some California Schools Skimped On Air Conditioning For Years. This Heat Wave Is Just The Beginning Of Their Problems
Inside the school kitchen at Russell Elementary in South Los Angeles, it’s not unusual — even at 6:30 in the morning — for the air temperature to approach 90 degrees Fahrenheit. And that’s when there’s not a heat wave outside.

High School Journalists In LA Learn About Censorship, From Their Own Principal
In the fall of last year, amid the statewide uncertainty of deadlines for mandatory vaccinations for public school teachers, an anti-vaccination group protested near Daniel Pearl Magnet High School in L.A.’s San Fernando Valley. The larger school issues made the demonstration newsworthy, so journalism students at the campus covered it.

Doctors, Advocates Sound Alarm On Youth Mental Health Crisis: ‘I’ve Never Seen It Close To This Bad’
Mental health experts say youth experiencing mental health crises often face a revolving door of short emergency room stays. After discharge, oftentimes it's left up to parents to monitor children who are at risk of harming themselves or others around the clock. That’s why advocates and doctors are backing AB2317, a bill that would pave the way for children’s psychiatric residential treatment facilities, a sort of middle ground between in-patient hospitalization and home. The measure cleared the state legislature this week, after getting a unanimous vote in the Senate Wednesday.


A state program that provides children’s hearing aids may be expanded to include more families
A proposal to expand a year-old California program that provides hearing aids to children was approved by the state Legislature in the final days of the session that ended Wednesday. If Gov. Gavin Newsom signs the bills, the expansion will add about 2,000 additional deaf or hard of hearing children who have partial insurance coverage and up to age 21who are not currently eligible for the income-based Hearing Aid Coverage for Children Program. If approved, it will go into effect Jan. 1, 2023.

New poll: Majority of adults don’t trust educators to handle sensitive topics
New polling on the American education system shows widespread approval of local schools — along with ominous signs of dissatisfaction among both parents and the public at large. In a report published today by PDK International, a professional organization for teachers, over 1,000 adults expressed higher levels of faith in their community’s public schools than have ever been recorded in the survey’s 48-year history, with 54% giving them an A or B. That figure represents an 11-point increase from 2018 and a robust show of support given the extraordinary challenges of post-COVID learning recovery.

LAUSD hit by cyberattack, prompting federal response
The Los Angeles Unified School District said classes will resume as scheduled Tuesday after the district experienced a cyberattack on its information technology systems over the weekend. The district contacted federal officials over the weekend, prompting the White House to mobilize a response from the U.S. Department of Education, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, according to the LAUSD.

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