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State Superintendent Tom Torlakson Opposes Federal Tax Bill Changes that Hurt Teachers

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson announced on December 12 that he opposes changes in pending federal tax bills that could reduce the income of teachers and aspiring teachers at a time when California faces a teacher shortage. A letter was sent to the congressional members of the House Committee on Education regarding these bills.

Current law lets teachers deduct $250 annually for paper, pencils, pens, and other classroom supplies...

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Brown’s January Budget Proposal Draws Praise and Criticism from Legislators, Educators

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said:

Governor Brown’s budget proposal provides a big boost to our public school students. The proposal shows how far we have come as a state in the past seven years in increasing investments in education so our students can continue to succeed in college and the 21st Century economy.

The proposal adds $3.8 billion to the annual Proposition 98 guarantee for public education...

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Research Shows Teachers’ Physical Proximity Boosts Collaboration with Colleagues

Innovative new schools across the country are experimenting with building designs to increase student learning and teacher collaboration. But the majority of instructors in the United States teach in a more traditional setting – the “egg crate” design, consisting of long hallways lined with self-contained classrooms. In a new article for Education Next, James Spillane of Northwestern University and Matthew Shirrell of George Washington University report...

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Governance & Leadership


Facilities & Planning


Operations & Technology


CSBA Calls on Legislature to Fund Schools at the Average of the Top States

As part of its ongoing work to ensure that all students benefit from the resources needed for a high-quality education, CSBA called on the Legislature on January 8 to raise school funding to the national average by 2020 and to the average of the top 10 states by 2025.

“There was an era when California’s public education system was the envy of the nation and our schools were as well-funded as any in the country, but for decades, California schools have been asked to do more with less,”..

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Solar Capacity at Schools Has Nearly Doubled Nationwide in Three Years

With installation costs plummeting, American schools are switching to solar energy at a rapid pace, reducing their electricity bills and freeing up resources to invest in education. There are now 5,489 K-12 schools in the United States that use solar energy, nearly double the total solar capacity that was installed at schools in 2014, according to a new report by The Solar Foundation, Generation 180, and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA)...

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State Rules Announced to Protect Students from Pesticide Exposure

On Nov. 13, Tom Torlakson praised the California Department of Pesticide Regulation for adopting new rules to further protect students and communities from pesticide exposure. These rules will take effect on Jan. 1, 2018 and regulate agricultural pesticide use near schools and licensed childcare facilities.

“Children, teachers, school staff, parents, and school communities need safe healthy school environments to learn and succeed,” said Torlakson...

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