EdBrief

Rethinking Concussion Education for a New Generation of Student Athletes

October 3, 2018
By Carrie Spector

Brandon Simmons, a captain for the Stanford Cardinal football team, remembers sustaining his first concussion during a high school game in Arlington, Texas.

“I was heading off the quarterback, and my nature as a football player is really physical-I love to hit,” he said. “It was a loud collision, and everyone in the stands went, ‘Oooooh.’ It was a good play-normally I would’ve been hyped about it...

read more

CDC Releases New Clinical Recommendations to Improve Care of Students with Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

October 3, 2018

On September 4, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released new clinical recommendations for healthcare providers treating children with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), often referred to as concussion. The CDC Guideline on the Diagnosis and Management of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Among Children, published today in JAMA Pediatrics, is based on the most comprehensive review of the science on pediatric mTBI to date - covering 25 years of research.

“More than 800,000 children seek care for TBI in U.S. emergency departments each year, and until today, there was no evidence-based guideline in the United States on pediatric mTBI - inclusive of all causes,” said Deb Houry, MD, MPH, director of CDC’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. “Healthcare providers will now be equipped with the knowledge and tools they need to ensure the best outcomes for their young patients who sustain an mTBI.”...

read more

Charter Schools, Teacher Raises Draw Debate From Candidates Marshall Tuck, Tony Thurmond

September 20, 2018
By Nadine Sebai, Capital Public Radio

The two finalists for California’s state schools chief faced off in a debate on September 4 at the Sacramento Press Club. in a race that pits teachers unions against charter school advocates.

Former charter school executive Marshall Tuck and Assemblyman Tony Thurmond finished neck-and-neck in the June primary for state superintendent of public instruction...

read more

Broad-based Stanford Study Recommends Changes in California Education in Four Main Areas

September 20, 2018

On Sept. 17, Stanford University and PACE (Policy Analysis for California Education) released Getting Down to Facts II - a large research study that gives a broad overview of education in California, incorporating information drawn from some three dozen research projects, to create a “state of the state” profile of education in the Golden State. The study is a collaboration of researchers from institutions across the country coordinated by Stanford University, and led by Professor Susanna Loeb, now director of the Annenberg Institute at Brown University.

The findings demonstrate that if California stays the course with reforms in place while addressing significant gaps in implementation capacity, finance, and early education, the State’s schools will continue to move in the right direction. Comprising 36 studies researched by more than 100 investigators from across the nation and disseminated by Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE), GDTFII covers four main areas: Student Success, Governance, Personnel, and Finance...

read more

Poll Finds Most Parents Don’t Want Their Children to Become Teachers
Broad Support for Teachers Striking for Higher Pay

September 6, 2018

In the wake of activism by teachers across the country, an overwhelming 78 percent of public school parents say they would support teachers in their own communities if they went on strike for higher pay. Two-thirds of Americans say teacher salaries are too low, and very few Americans --- just 6 percent of all adults --- say teacher salaries are too high.

And despite continued high trust and confidence in teachers, for the first time since 1969, a majority of Americans say they do not want their own children to become teachers, most often citing poor pay and benefits in the profession...

read more

ACLU Analysis of Federal Civil Rights Data Shows New Area of Racial Disparities in Public Schools

September 6, 2018

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the UCLA Civil Rights Project released the first in a series of reports on August 29 revealing students missed more than 11 million days of school in 2015-16 because of suspensions.

The time lost in educational opportunity is strikingly severe for students of color and students with disabilities. Although Black students made up 15 percent of students in U.S. public schools, they account for 45 percent of days lost to suspensions...

read more

NSBA Releases Comprehensive School Safety Guide

September 6, 2018

The National School Boards Association (NSBA) has released a legal guide to help school board members, as policy makers for school districts, navigate the increasingly complex world of emergency preparedness and response to instances of school safety and mass violence. “Fostering Safer Schools, A Legal Guide for School Board Members on School Safety” takes a fresh look through a legal lens at school safety. The guide identifies key areas of concern that have emerged as looming issues including student mental health, crisis management, working with law enforcement and legal liability. 

“School safety has been and will always be a top concern for school board members,” says Thomas J. Gentzel, NSBA’s Executive Director & CEO. “I hope this legal guide offers state school boards associations a valuable resource they can share with their school board members to ensure that each and every student and educator is able to learn and teach in the most secure environment possible.”...

read more

Education Next Poll Surveys Public Opinion on Teacher Salaries, School Spending and Union Issues

August 22, 2018
By Albert Cheng, Michael B. Henderson, Paul E. Peterson and Martin R. West

Education’s political landscape has shifted dramatically over the past year. To the consternation of most school-district officials, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos used the bully pulpit to promote charter schools, vouchers, and tax credits for private-school scholarships. To the distress of teachers unions, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down an Illinois law requiring government workers who elect not to become union members to pay representation fees. To the chagrin of civil-rights groups, the U.S. Department of Education said that it was reviewing a letter sent to school districts by the Obama administration informing them that they were at risk of incurring a civil-rights violation if students of color were suspended or expelled more often than their peers. To the relief of Common Core enthusiasts, the politically charged debate over the standards moved to the back burner. And to the dismay of parents, teachers, and policymakers across the political spectrum, students demonstrated almost no gains in reading and math on the 2017 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) over the 2015 test...

read more

Superintendent Describes Active Shooter Situation at Elementary School

August 22, 2018

Bullet holes and broken glass. They are shocking examples of tragedy and triumph in Tehama County in Northern California.

“During a crisis, you’re moving at hyperspeed,” said Rick Fitzpatrick, Superintendent of Corning Unified Elementary School District. “Every second matters when it comes to protecting innocent lives.”...

read more

Three-Judge Panel Again Rejects Prayer During School Board Meetings

August 7, 2018
(Editor’s note: On July 25, the Los Angeles times carried an article describing a ruling by a three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, upholding a 2016 injunction against prayer at school board meetings in the Chino Valley Unified School District.)
By Maura Dolan

A federal appeals court decided on July 25 that Chino Valley school board meetings may not include prayers, proselytizing or the citing of Christian Scripture.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a 2016 injunction against the religious practices, which the court said dated back to at least 2010...

read more

PPIC Brief Offers Snapshot of Child Poverty in California

August 7, 2018
(Editor’s note: The Public Policy Institute of California recently released this summary of child poverty statistics for California.)

  1. Child poverty rates remain substantially higher than before the recession.
    According to official poverty statistics, 19.9% of children in California lived in families without enough resources to make ends meet in 2016. This is down significantly from 2015 (21.2%) but well above the most recent low in 2007 (17.3%). The official poverty measure is a long-standing yardstick that does not account for differences in the cost of living across the United States or within California, family needs like medical or child care expenses, or the boost that safety net benefits give to many families, especially those with children...

read more

CSBA, ACSA Call on Legislature to Introduce Full and Fair Funding Amendment to the California Constitution

July 17, 2018

The California School Boards Association (CSBA) and the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) are calling for the State Legislature to introduce a Constitutional amendment that would provide for the Full and Fair Funding of California public schools.

The two statewide associations made the request in a joint letter sent to every member of the Legislature. Signed by CSBA CEO & Executive Director Vernon M. Billy and ACSA Executive Director Dr. Wesley Smith, the letter states that, “Before the current legislative session ends on August 31, CSBA and ACSA are asking you to help lead the fight by introducing a Constitutional amendment to move California to the top 10 states in per-pupil funding.”...

read more

California Wins Federal Approval for ESSA Plan

July 17, 2018

California State Board of Education President Michael W. Kirst and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson announced on July 12 that U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has approved California’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) plan.

“Given the differences between federal and state law, the plan approved by Secretary DeVos today represents the best possible outcome of our discussions with U.S. Department of Education staff,” Kirst said. “California is a national leader in supporting students with extra needs, providing local control over spending, encouraging community participation in schools, and releasing critical information on measures that indicate student success. Our ESSA plan allows that work to continue.”...

read more

Proposal: Give Teachers a $10,000 Raise By Adding Federal Tax Credit

July 17, 2018

On July 13, the Center for American Progress released a new proposal to vastly increase teacher pay using the federal tax code. The proposal’s release comes on the heels of several months of teacher strikes across the country that have shone a light on the critical state of teacher compensation in the United States, as well as on the same day as the American Federation of Teachers kicks off its annual national conference.

The CAP proposal aims to narrow the pay gap for teachers in high-needs schools. It would give teachers as much as a $10,000 - or roughly $190-per-week - raise using the federal tax code. This permanent, refundable tax credit would ensure that all eligible teachers would see a significant increase in take-home pay that is not subject to annual appropriation negotiations. The report also addresses preserving and increasing state and district funding levels under this plan...

read more