Editorial: The pendulum swings too far on school accountability

By The Times Editorial Board

Is California’s commitment to school accountability dead? Probably not, but it’s certainly withering.

California’s response to federal school accountability law falls short

By Dan Walters 

One of the less heralded – albeit, one of the more important – of the many clashes between Sacramento and Washington these days has to do with accountability for educating the state’s 6-plus million K-12 students.

Editorial: Report cards for California schools needed

By Chronicle Editorial Board

The California Legislature is strongly resisting federal action on almost all fronts — climate, civil rights, environment, immigration, law enforcement — but not education. There is demonstrated support for an annual report card on how each school spends local, state and federal funding and what progress it has made on measures of student academic achievement. The Brown administration however is resisting such concise reporting. It should not.

Chased out of Arkansas as a child, Shirley Weber won’t back down in California Capitol

By Jessica Calefati

When Shirley Weber and her siblings fled this place as children in 1951 on a midnight train bound for California, their destination seemed so distant and unfamiliar to the relatives who stayed behind that they called the state a foreign land.

Commentary: Teacher quality is determined in the classroom, not by a credential

By Haena Shin

Teachers can tell when they are effective. In my first year as a special education teacher in a pre-kindergarten setting, the signs were small but profound — a nonverbal student who started to greet me in the mornings, a student who didn’t know how to hold a pencil properly who learned to write full sentences about books he read, a student who memorized over 100 sight words, and a student who didn’t know his numbers who began to start adding and subtracting.

California school accountability plan is anti-accountability

By The San Diego Union-Tribune Editorial Board

The State Board of Education must submit its plan by next month and appears satisfied with a version released Aug. 8. On Thursday, Bellwether Education Partners — a national nonprofit think tank — released its evaluation of California’s proposal. While praising the plan’s vision of a first-rate education of all, the analysis is sharply critical of the plan’s most crucial components. The biggest complaints:

  • The plan wouldn’t even manage to “capture individual students’ improvement over time.”

Commentary: Credential not only way to measure good teachers

By Elise Morgan

I didn’t expect to be a teacher. My first career choice was counselor, and I specialized in helping low-income adults return to college. After two years of hearing my advisees explain how they got off track during high school, I decided if I really wanted to make a difference, I needed to work with students earlier in their educational experiences.

But like many career changers, I faced a financial hurdle. My undergraduate degree was in English, and I could not afford to take time off to pursue a master’s degree in education.

An Independent Review of California’s Draft ESSA Plan

By Bellwether Education Partners

...[T]he plan lacks important specificity about its continued engagement with key stakeholders after the state begins implementing its plan. The state would improve its proposal by clearly describing in more detail its process for gathering data and input along the way, for continuing to engage with stakeholders, and for modifying its system as necessary.

AB 1164: Don't protect the worst teachers

By Rae Belisle

Competition for success in the 21st-century economy is increasingly tied to an educated workforce with strong science, technology, engineering and math skills. Parents, community and business leaders, and policy makers trying to keep and grow jobs in California should be shocked that in just a few short years California has won the race to the bottom.

A Free Education System Bought and Sold on the Housing Market, as It Was Intended to Be

By Derrell Bradford

When you think about education, it’s worth asking two questions over and over again: Why is this thing the way it is? And does it have to stay this way?

One thing you hear often in education is that your ZIP code shouldn’t determine your educational destiny. This is something even folks who say they oppose “education reform” ostensibly believe.

So if that’s true, why is your house the overwhelming predictor of the sort of education you will receive?