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Morning Read: Reward Over Punishment for Truancy

LA School Report | September 4, 2013

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More districts in L.A. County taking less punitive approach to truancy
A growing number of school districts and public agencies in Los Angeles County have joined a campaign to take a less punitive and more holistic approach to truancy — and education officials insist it’s paying off. School officials from all over the county held a news conference Tuesday at the Centinela Valley Center for the Arts in Lawndale to tout what they call the “I’m In” campaign, which essentially favors rewarding kids for attending school over punishing them for skipping. LA Daily News

Early education advocates seek more support from governor
Gov. Jerry Brown has been lauded for major reforms that are restoring K-12 schools to fiscal health, but advocates say he hasn’t made anywhere near the same kind of commitment to funding education for children before they enter kindergarten. As state revenues continue to grow, many early education advocates have begun to ask: When will it be our turn? EdSource

Ed Reform Groups Call For Release Of Delayed Teacher Prep Regs
The panel rewriting the rules for TEACH Grants and deciding what, exactly, constitutes “high-quality” teacher preparation failed to reach consensus more than a year ago. But the Education Department still hasn’t released the ensuing regulations. A coalition of mostly education reform-minded groups is calling for them to hurry up. The groups say the new regulations are held up at the White House Office of Management and Budget, which reviews them before publication in the Federal Register. Politico

Charter schools, traditional public schools should be cooperating
Editorial: From the beginning, the charter school movement was touted as a proving ground for innovations that could eventually improve traditional public schools. But friction between the two types of schools in California has largely prevented that from happening. Not in San Jose’s Franklin-McKinley School District, which last week reopened two low-performing elementary schools in the Seven Trees area. San Jose Mercury

L.A. sheriff: Pay for preschool, not prisons
The man who runs the nation’s largest jail system came to Washington on Monday to promote what he considers a potent tool in crime-fighting: universal pre-school. Los Angeles County Sheriff Leroy Baca is heading a lobbying effort by more than 1,000 police chiefs, sheriffs and prosecutors to convince Congress to enact the Obama administration’s plan to expand preschool to every 4-year-old in the country. Washington Post

New Sites Aim to Help Pick Best Ed-Tech Tools
Educators struggling to choose the best technology products face a mind-boggling array of decisions, a challenge that is spawning a growing number of ed-tech product-review sites. Such sites—sometimes compared to Consumer Reports, Angie’s List or CNET in how they use ratings and recommendations to evaluate educational technology—are now operating or are launching soon, with educators themselves assigning the grades. EdWeek

No longer swearing by cursive writing
Editorial: For all the new things that schools will be called on to teach under the soon-to-be-implemented Common Core curriculum standards, it’s a skill that has been omitted that is causing controversy: cursive writing. Good old script penmanship isn’t part of the standards, which have been adopted by 45 states, including California. Several states, including California, have kept requirements for cursive instruction in place, but many others appear ready for its demise. LA Times

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