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Morning Read: Vladovic To Put New Vision on Display

LA School Report | August 19, 2013

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L.A. Unified President Pushes Board’s Authority to Set Policy
The new president of the Los Angeles Unified school board is moving aggressively to reshape the panel’s operation and mission, including plans to improve communication, enhance collaboration and take a more decisive stance in setting district policy. Richard Vladovic of San Pedro will lay out his vision Tuesday, the first board meeting of the school year and the first since a majority of his colleagues chose him as president. LA Daily News

LAUSD’s Arts Budget to Get Its Day in the Sun
The Los Angeles Unified School district is pushing forward on its new arts education plan. On Tuesday, the Board of Education will take up a resolution calling for official adoption of the plan as a “working document.” The resolution requires the Superintendent to report back on the implementation of the plan at a public meeting within 60 days. KPCC

How Kafkaesque Bureaucrats Are Ruining Education
Just 39 percent of LAUSD students are proficient in math and only 41 percent are proficient in English (though their scores have improved since 2010). Nearly four in 10 LAUSD students fail to graduate from high school, and African-American students are nearly twice as likely to drop out as whites. Deasy is quick to blame the schools for students’ poor performance but the real problem is right under his nose. As my experience attests, the villains aren’t the teachers, as many believe, but often are power-hungry district bureaucrats who set their own agenda and are accountable to no one. Truthdig

Principals Take the Initiative to Keep School Open in the Summer
Thanks to enterprising principals, students in a few California communities will have no trouble answering the question: What did you do this summer? Despite tight district budgets, some principals in Los Angeles Unified and Oakland Unified have on their own initiative figured out a way to provide programs this summer by reaching out to their local communities and private foundations for support. EdSource

New Poll: Tax Brackets, Education, Race Drive Views on Education
Minority and low-income parents are more likely to see serious problems in their schools — from low expectations to bullying to out-of-date technology and textbooks — than those who are affluent or white, according to an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research Poll. Overall impressions of the nation’s schools and teachers are similarly positive among all groups of parents, but deep demographic differences emerge in the details of how parents see teachers, schools and even their own roles in their children’s education. Washington Post

California Upends School Funding To Give Poor Kids A Boost
As the school year begins, districts in cities such as Oakland, Fresno and Los Angeles have not gone on a hiring spree. But they might soon. California has revamped its school funding formula in ways that will send billions more dollars to districts that educate large numbers of children who are poor, disabled in some way or still learning to speak English. NPR

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