Reports & Research

Updated: February 10, 2018

 

USC Poll: Majority of Voters Like California...

A new poll shows that a majority of state voters support the California School Dashboard, a performance gauge that was created by the state last year to improve equity and transparency in school quality.

Launched in March 2017, the California School Dashboard is an online tool that shows how schools are performing according to the various indicators that comprise the state's education accountability system.

State education leaders hoped the dashboard would better inform parents as well as improve equity in schools. Some organizations panned the system when it debuted, with one calling it "more confusing than practical."

Yet a new USC Rossier/PACE poll, released on February 7, finds that a majority of voters...

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Study: LCFF Raising Student Achievement...

California’s Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), the school finance overhaul enacted in 2013, is having a measurable positive impact on students’ academic achievement and graduation rates, improving outcomes and narrowing gaps, according to a study released on February 1 by the Learning Policy Institute. The findings were discussed at a meeting of Policy Analysis for California Education in Sacramento. LCFF reallocated school finances based on students need and gave school districts significantly more flexibility in spending. Schools receive greater funding for each student who is low-income, an English learner, or in foster care. The new formula has come with an increase in K-12 funding-a total of $18 billion by the time LCFF is fully implemented. This is one of the first studies on the impact of LCFF on students’ academic achievement and graduation rates.

The study, Money and Freedom: The Impact of California’s School Finance Reform, examines high school graduation rates...

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USC Rossier School of Education study report...

Study Examines Homelessness Among LGBTQ Students

Data suggest that 320,000-400,000 homeless youths identify as LGBTQ in the United States.

While research has addressed problems facing LGBTQ students and homeless students, those at the intersection have less support.

In a new paper published in the journal Educational Researcher, two scholars out of the USC Rossier School of Education propose a policy and research agenda to help.

“The difficulties facing homeless youth generally warrant more attention from policymakers and researchers,” said William G. Tierney, the Wilbur-Kieffer Professor of Higher Education at USC Rossier and one of the paper’s authors. “We opted to focus on LGBTQ homeless youth because there’s a dearth of research and policy compared to homelessness in general.”...

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PPIC report...

PPIC Ponders Prospects of K-12 Schools Under Next Governor

California educates more than 6 million children in its K-12 public schools. More than half of these students are economically disadvantaged. Almost a quarter are English Learners (ELs), compared with fewer than one in ten nationwide.

In order to better serve its student population, the state has enacted several reforms in recent years – and state funding for K-12 education has increased for six consecutive years. In 2010, California adopted the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in math and English, and students began taking new standards-aligned tests – the Smarter Balanced assessments – in 2015.

In addition, the state has mostly finished implementing the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF). The LCFF was enacted in 2013 to simplify school finance, increase funding for high-need (low-income, EL, and foster youth) students, and revamp school accountability...

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CDPH guidance...

State Issues Guidelines on How to Reduce Exposure to Radio Frequency Energy from Cell Phones

As smartphone use continues to increase in the U.S., especially among children, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued guidance on December 13 for individuals and families who want to decrease their exposure to the radio frequency energy emitted from cell phones. Although the scientific community has not reached a consensus on the risks of cell phone use, research suggests long-term, high use may impact human health.

"Although the science is still evolving, there are concerns among some public health professionals and members of the public regarding long-term, high use exposure to the energy emitted by cell phones," said CDPH Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith. "We know that simple steps, such as not keeping your phone in your pocket and moving it away from your bed at night, can help reduce exposure for both children and adults."...

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New America Foundation report...

New Policy Paper Looks at Ways to Connect High School Students to Apprenticeship Programs

“So, what are you doing next year?” It’s a common question American high school students face from teachers, neighbors, their friends, and parents. For students today, the most common answer is college, with nearly 70 percent of today’s high school graduates enrolling in higher education after graduation. While high school graduation rates are at istoric high, still nearly a third of students do not enroll in postsecondary education after graduation. Of those that do, just over half will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in six years, and their prospects are worse if they start at a two-year college. Among completers, there is no guarantee of a well-paying job to help pay off the over $30,000 debt that today’s college graduates accumulate on average.

As policymakers contemplate new ways to prepare students for college and careers, youth apprenticeship stands out as a compelling option. Apprenticeship is a proven educational model that integrates on-the-job and classroom learning...

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Ball State study report...

Study: Schools Could Do More to Prevent, Respond to Teen Dating Violence Incidents

Preventing and responding to incidents of teen dating violence is not a high priority for most American schools, even though the majority of high schools have assisted survivors, says a new study from Ball State University in Indiana.

"Preventing and Responding to Teen Dating Violence: A National Study of School Principals’ Perspectives and Practices” published in Violence and Gender, is based on a national survey of high school principals.

This research found a majority (76 percent) of the school principals reported that they did not have a protocol in their schools to respond to an incident of teen dating violence. About 57 percent of school principals said that they had assisted a survivor of teen dating violence in the past two years. Disciplinary action against perpetrators of teen dating violence was sanctioned by 27 percent principals only...

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PPIC report...

PPIC Report Explores Reducing Child Poverty in California

Nearly a quarter of young children in California live in poverty – a fact that has profound educational, health, and economic repercussions now and in the long term. High housing costs and low wages are key barriers to reducing the prevalence of child poverty. Lawmakers have taken action to address these issues: the minimum wage is slated to increase to $15 an hour by 2022, and recently enacted laws aim to ease the state’s housing crisis.

This report, Reducing Child Poverty in California, examines how high housing costs and low wages contribute to poverty among young children ages 0–5 and considers additional policy approaches that could mitigate need among this population. A related interactive graphic allows for a deeper exploration of how these potential changes could affect California’s diverse counties...

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PPIC report...

Less Than a Third of State’s 9th-Graders Likely to Earn a Bachelor’s Degree

Only about 30 percent of California 9th graders are expected to earn a bachelor’s degree, with the vast majority falling off the path to college in the last two years of high school or the first two years of college. A report released on November 27 by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) shows that most California high school graduates do not complete the college preparatory courses required for admission to the California State University (CSU) or University of California (UC) systems. But preparation alone does not explain why students do not progress to and through college: even academically prepared students are falling off the college pathway.

The report analyzes when students leave the path to college, which students leave, and the major impediments to success. It is based on a large longitudinal sample of high school students, as well as statewide data...

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The Education Trust–West report...

New Report Outlines Stark, Persistent Achievement Gap Between Latino Students, Others in California

Latinos make up the majority of students in California. And the state is widely regarded as being a bastion of Latino political power, with Latinos holding many of the top positions in Sacramento.

And yet, a new report from The Education Trust–West shows a stark and persistent achievement gap between Latino and white students. In every county in the state the majority of Latino students are not proficient in math or English language arts.

The report also found that California’s Latino students attend some of the country’s most segregated schools, lack access to early childhood education, are often pushed away from college-prep coursework in high school and are more likely to be required to take remedial classes in colleges and universities...

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