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1297 posts
  • Higher Education
USC is hitting its $6-billion fundraising goal ahead of schedule and will continue its campaign for five more years.
USC is hitting its $6-billion fundraising goal ahead of schedule and will continue its campaign for five more years. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

USC is about to reach its ambitious $6-billion fundraising goal more than 17 months ahead of schedule and will be extending the campaign five more years, university President C.L. Max Nikias announced Wednesday during his annual address to the faculty.

The momentum has helped USC grow much faster than expected, he said. When the effort was announced in 2011, it was considered the largest fundraising goal in American academia.

“The university continues to set new ambitions in the sciences, engineering and medicine, as well as the arts and humanities, while working to expand access for lower- and middle-income students,” Nikias said. 

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  • K-12
  • LAUSD
  • Charter Schools
Campaign mailer from a political action committee of teacher unions, including United Teachers Los Angeles.
Campaign mailer from a political action committee of teacher unions, including United Teachers Los Angeles.

The contest for Los Angeles Board of Education seats has included much negative campaigning, including the flier above. It was sent out by a political action committee under the control of United Teachers Los Angeles, the local teachers union. 

This mailer and others with similar themes target two challengers, Allison Holdorff Polhill and Nick Melvoin, who are backed by charter school supporters. They and Gregory Martayan are opposing two-term incumbent Steve Zimmer in the March 7 election to represent District 4, which stretches from the Westside to the west San Fernando Valley.

We are presenting fact/fiction reviews of campaign claims as the election nears. Allegations presented without sufficient evidence will be rated as false, unproven or misleading.

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  • Betsy DeVos
  • Higher Education
  • K-12
  • LAUSD
  • Community Colleges
Los Angeles City College
Los Angeles City College (Los Angeles Times)

In and around Los Angeles:

  1. The L.A. Unified school board yesterday discussed a way to soothe conflicts between schools and parents.
  2. The Department of Public Health is investigating the death of an 18-year-old Santa Monica High School senior.
  3. Our editorial board endorsed these candidates for the Los Angeles Community College District.

In California:

  1. State Sen. Anthony Portantino wants California's schools to start later in the day.
  2. There's a sinkhole in a San Diego school parking lot.
  3. Tustin Unified is inviting President Trump for a visit, so he can learn about the good things happening in public schools.
  4. More California millennials are showing up in emergency rooms because of heroin use.

Nationwide:

  1. Trump, DeVos and Spicer talked about school choice with parents and teachers, but never used the V-word.
  2. Yale University will rename Calhoun College, a residential college named after John C. Calhoun.
  3. The future of My Brother's Keeper.
  4. New Jersey is adopting a program to reduce infant mortality by giving out baby boxes.
  • K-12
  • LAUSD
Students at Jordan High in a restorative-justice talking circle.
Students at Jordan High in a restorative-justice talking circle. (Barbara Davidson/Los Angeles Times)

The Los Angeles Unified School District has cut its student suspension rate in half since 2013, thanks in part to an alternative discipline approach called restorative justice that relies on methods such as talking circles and trust-building to get at the the root of conflicts and resolve them.

Now the district is considering the same approach for a different group: parents and principals.

The school district's board considered a resolution Tuesday that would require the superintendent to create a pilot program to train school administrators in using restorative-justice practices with parents. Such a program, the resolution said, would aim "to restore and strengthen school and parent relationships and school communities when conflict arises."

  • K-12
  • LAUSD
(Los Angeles Unified School District)

More than 163,000 students worldwide took the Advanced Placement Spanish Language and Culture exam last year. 

Only 108 of those students, or fewer than 1%, earned a perfect score on the college-level test for high school students.

Noe Martinon, 17, now a senior at Santee Education Complex, was one of them.

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  • Betsy DeVos
  • K-12

An unprecedented number of Americans have called, emailed and faxed their lawmakers to share their thoughts about the U.S. Secretary of Education since she was confirmed last week. We'd love to know what you think about Betsy DeVos and her new job. Tell us.

  • Betsy DeVos
  • K-12
  • Charter Schools
President Trump and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos addressed parents and educators Tuesday.
President Trump and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos addressed parents and educators Tuesday. (Alex Wong / Getty Images)

On the campaign trail, Donald Trump said little about education, but he did propose an expensive plan for expanding school vouchers, which allow public money to go toward tuition at private, often religious, schools.

Then he picked Betsy DeVos, a long-time voucher advocate, as his secretary of Education.

Since DeVos' confirmation, there has been a flurry of legislative activity around charter schools and vouchers in some states. 

  • K-12
(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is investigating the death Saturday of an 18-year-old Santa Monica High School student.

Kelly Cano, a senior, was a member of the school’s choir and swim team, according to a statement from the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District. She is the second student that the high school has lost this school year. Sophomore Vanai Jelks, 15, died in October.

The Los Angeles County coroner’s office has not determined a cause of death for either student, according to an email from coroner’s spokesman Craig Harvey.

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Senior Editor Antonio Mejias-Rentas, left, and student reporter Kimberly Gallardo, 16, of the Boyle Heights Beat newspaper interview a Los Angeles police sergeant.
Senior Editor Antonio Mejias-Rentas, left, and student reporter Kimberly Gallardo, 16, of the Boyle Heights Beat newspaper interview a Los Angeles police sergeant. (Patrick T. Fallon / Los Angeles Times)

This school year, Diego Flores joined the Boyle Heights Beat, a newspaper in which high school students write about the historic Latino neighborhood east of downtown. Their stories run in Spanish and English, online and in print.

It’s a small operation, run out of a donated space at an old hospital. But in the six years the Beat has been around, the paper has become a key voice for the community. The teenagers who run it have learned as much about themselves as they have about Boyle Heights. 

  • Higher Education
  • Community Colleges
A $25-million library opened on the Compton Community College campus in 2014 after a seven-year delay. Accreditation leaders said the new building was symbolic of the progress the school has made.
A $25-million library opened on the Compton Community College campus in 2014 after a seven-year delay. Accreditation leaders said the new building was symbolic of the progress the school has made. (Anne Cusack / Los Angeles Times)

The Compton Community College District, which has been managed by a state-appointed special trustee since it lost its accreditation more than a decade ago, has won back the authority to govern itself — a major nod to its efforts to rebuild, state officials announced Tuesday.

The college now will be run once again by its own elected board of trustees.