State task force offers blueprint for education technology

By Susan Frey

April 18, 2014 | 1 Comment »

Embracing the mantra “no child left off-line,” a state task force is offering a vision of how California classrooms can embrace education technology to enhance learning.
Convened by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson in …


EdSource symposium to tackle ‘seminal’ public school reforms

By Michelle Maitre

April 18, 2014 | 3 Comments »

New tests, new lessons, new acronyms.
Public education in California is undergoing radical reforms that change everything – from how students will be tested on what they learn to the fundamental way schools are evaluated.
An EdSource symposium in Los …

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Majority of California voters support universal preschool for 4-year-olds

By Lillian Mongeau

April 18, 2014 | 2 Comments »

Most California voters think the state should increase the availability of preschool for the state’s 4-year-olds, according to a Field Poll conducted in partnership with EdSource. Of the 1,000 registered voters polled, 55 percent said …


Wanted: districts interested in being early adopters of new science standards

By John Fensterwald

April 17, 2014 | Please Comment Here »

The California Science Teachers Association and the nonprofit education research and development agency WestEd are seeking a half-dozen school districts to take the lead in implementing the Next Generation Science Standards.
In exchange for committing to …


Report: Juvenile justice system schools “do more harm than good”

By Susan Frey

April 17, 2014 | 12 Comments »

The education provided to the 70,000 juveniles incarcerated on any given day across the nation is “substandard” and “is setting them even further back in their ability to turn their lives around,” according to a …

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State panel grapples with defining ‘college and career ready’

By Michelle Maitre

April 16, 2014 | 4 Comments »

Preparing students for colleges and careers shouldn’t be an “either-or” proposition and schools should be held accountable for how well they prepare students for both paths, an advocate for career education urged in testimony before …


Sample questions, more details on revamped SAT unveiled

By Michelle Maitre

April 16, 2014 | 1 Comment »

Some elements of a redesigned SAT made a debut Wednesday, offering a glimpse  of what will be required on a revamped test that officials say is more grounded in the skills and knowledge students need in …

Districts face challenge of prioritizing public input on school spending

By Louis Freedberg

April 15, 2014 | 5 Comments »

California’s school funding reform law has triggered a burst of outreach efforts to solicit parent and community input in at least some districts – along with a plethora of suggestions about how to spend the additional …

Desiree Jones Credit: John Fensterwald

At an East San Jose high school, students react to new Common Core test

By John Fensterwald

April 14, 2014 | 17 Comments »

The students in John Daniels’ U.S. history class at James Lick High School in East San Jose are a smidgen of the tens of thousands of juniors who are taking the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium …


Petition to ‘save’ job training program forwarded to governor

By Michelle Maitre

April 14, 2014 | Please Comment Here »

About 2,000 people signed a petition to “save” the Southern California Regional Occupational Center, or SoCal ROC, one of the state’s largest and oldest providers of career training for students that advocates fear may be …

Districts should make early learning a priority in their local accountability plans

By Ted Lempert and Mark Friedman /commentary

April 13, 2014 | 1 Comment »

The achievement gap is a term used so regularly in the education world that its realities can sometimes lose their significance. But according to new research from The Annie E. Casey Foundation, the gap is …

Bullets fly, but the test must go on

By Maggie Terry / commentary

April 9, 2014 | 9 Comments »

This commentary was written the day last month that 10th graders in Los Angeles were due to take the math portion of the California High School Exit Exam.
Five pops that sounded like fireworks. Short and …

Districts’ stringent criteria can delay reclassifying English learners

By Laura Hill and Margaret Weston / commentary

April 4, 2014 | 10 Comments »

English learners have been a subject of policy concern in California since the early 1970s. The needs of these students — who make up about 25 percent of the state’s public school students today — …

Baseball can teach education a real lesson about making better decisions

By Arun Ramanathan / commentary

April 1, 2014 | 18 Comments »

With baseball season starting, I’ve been reading scouting reports on my favorite team. Because my immigration journey started in Philadelphia, I am cursed to spend my life as a Phillies fan. The scouting reports all …

Repay schools their stolen property taxes now, while times are good

By Jennifer Bestor

March 20, 2014 | 51 Comments »

Should California schoolchildren be the state’s interest-free lenders of first resort? Most people would say no. Yet they are.
Should California, in opposition to the equitable school financing principles outlined in Serrano v. Priest, take the …

California can be national leader in reforming testing and school accountability

By Louis Freedberg

March 18, 2014 | 9 Comments »

Beginning next week, California students will begin taking field tests of the new Smarter Balanced assessments, replacing the mostly multiple choice standardized tests that have been administered in schools for the past 15 years.
This represents a …

School districts should begin planning now for new science standards

By Trish Williams / commentary

March 4, 2014 | 5 Comments »

The Next Generation Science Standards, adopted last September by the State Board of Education, will better engage and educate all students in science, and better prepare them to enter more in-depth science, computing and engineering …

Now is the time to seize the parent engagement moment

By Colleen You / commentary

February 26, 2014 | 26 Comments »

Well-informed, engaged parents make a vital difference in the health and education of children. When families, schools and communities work as partners, student achievement is boosted and children are better prepared to lead happy and …

Community schools can help break the cycle of poverty

By Ed Center / commentary

February 18, 2014 | 8 Comments »

We’ve known for some time that children from low-income families are less likely to succeed in school relative to their higher-income peers. Many solutions to address this achievement gap have been explored, such as greater …

CalSTRS shortfall will require a shared responsibility

By Rob Bonta / commentary

February 14, 2014 | Please Comment Here »

The California Teachers Retirement System, or CalSTRS, is facing a significant unfunded liability with respect to its Defined Benefit Program. CalSTRS has a shortfall in funding of approximately $71 billion and will run out of …

EdSource Publications

April 2014 Majority of California voters support universal preschool for 4-year-olds

Most California voters think the state should increase the availability of preschool for the state’s 4-year-olds, according to a Field Poll conducted in partnership with EdSource.

March 2014 Reforming Testing and Accountability: Essential Principles for Student Success in California

California is fundamentally remaking the way students get tested and schools are evaluated. This new EdSource report clarifies the complex timeline for the revision of California's current testing and accountability system, identifies key principles that will help ensure the effectiveness of the new system and makes recommendations on how to ensure the system is developed in a timely way and that is most likely to improve student achievement.

February 2014 The Power of Parents: What the Research Shows

Produced in collaboration with New America Media, this EdSource report reviews compelling research showing that parent involvement in their children's school is associated with a range of positive outcomes for students and greater teacher satisfaction.

December 2013 EdSource Survey: Measuring Parent Engagement in Schools

With a change in state law that gives parents a larger role in school budget-making decisions, a first-of-its kind statewide poll by EdSource gives new insight into how involved parents are with their children's schools.

November 2013 School Funding Reform: An Essential EdSource Guide

Available in English and Spanish – this easy-to-read guide explains the essential elements of California's new school funding reforms and the Local Control Funding Formula.

August 2013 Recovering from the Recession: Pressures Ease on Largest School Districts

This report, based on a survey of California's 30 largest school districts serving some 2 million students, looks at how California schools are beginning to recover from years of budget cuts.