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A student walkout at Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts on Thursday.
A student walkout at Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts on Thursday. (Molly Kleinman)

Students at Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts walked out of classes today after one teenager accused another of rape. 

Some students and parents are concerned that they were not told anything about what allegedly happened. Some also were upset over what they saw as inaction on the part of the school district.  

The campus, on the north edge of downtown L.A., is the flagship arts high school for the Los Angeles Unified School District. 

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  • Betsy DeVos
  • Higher Education
  • K-12
  • California State University
  • University of California
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(Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images)

In and around Los Angeles:

  1. civil suit against L.A. Unified claims that the district failed to protect students at El Sereno Elementary School from a sexually abusive teacher.
  2. L.A. Unified reformer and Alliance College-Ready charter schools founder Judy Burton died at 69.
  3. Most Cal State presidents are women. The system's trustees are seeking a new leader for its San Diego campus.

In California:

  1. A proposed constitutional amendment would pull back the University of California's autonomy.
  2. A state senator introduced a bill designed to help teach students how to recognize fake news.

Nationwide:

  1. On Wednesday, Betsy DeVos was questioned by a House subcommittee on the administration's budget proposal. We learned that:
  2. Months into her tenure, she still can't answer some major education questions, such as how her office would seek to combat sexual assault on college campuses.
  3. She would not say whether any federally funded school voucher program would take discrimination into account when deciding which schools or states to subsidize.
  4. This point upset many observers, and her staff later clarified that DeVos would enforce existing laws.
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Judy Burton in 1998
Judy Burton in 1998 (Lori Shepler / Los Angeles Times)

It was widely presumed that Judy Burton someday would become superintendent of the L.A. Unified School District, given that she rose from star teacher to star principal to leader of internal reform efforts. But timing and illness worked against her and instead she became the founding leader of the region’s largest network of charter schools.

Burton died in Los Angeles on Friday of complications from liver failure. She was 69.

  • Higher Education
  • California State University
Sally Roush
Sally Roush (California State University)

California State University Chancellor Timothy P. White has appointed Sally Roush the new interim president of San Diego State, marking the first time that women outnumber men as campus presidents in the nation’s largest public university system.

Once Roush takes office in July, 12 of Cal State’s 23 presidents will be women. She will replace Elliot Hirshman, who announced earlier this year that he would be leaving to lead Stevenson University in Maryland. Roush — who worked at San Diego State in various positions for three decades — will lead the campus until the board of trustees names a permanent president next summer.

Trustees on Wednesday, after some debate, agreed to give Hirshman’s $428,645 salary — the highest of any Cal State president — to Roush.

Attorneys delivered opening statements Wednesday in a civil lawsuit brought against the Los Angeles Unified School District by five former students at El Sereno Elementary School who say the school system did not do enough to keep a sexually abusive teacher out of the classroom. 

The students allege that the teacher molested them between 2008 and 2010 but that school officials had reports of the teacher's inappropriate behavior dating back to 2003.

Lawyers for the students, who are now teenagers, say the school’s principal and assistant principal received complaints in 2003 that teacher Armando Gonzalez was making inappropriate comments in front of children, as well as complaints in 2005 and 2009 that he inappropriately touched students. 

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(Alex Wong / Getty Images)

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos answered a battery of tough questions Wednesday for the first time since her confirmation hearing.

She hasn’t taken questions from reporters at mainstream news outlets, and she recently declined an invitation to address a conference of education writers in Washington, D.C.

On Wednesday, she was cross-examined by lawmakers in a House appropriation subcommittee as she sought to justify the education cuts in President Trump’s proposed budget.

  • Betsy DeVos
  • K-12
(Erik Lesser / European Pressphoto Agency)

President Trump’s budget proposal includes deep cuts to education but funds a new push for school choice.

When pressed by representatives at a House appropriations subcommittee hearing on the budget, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos declined to say if, when or how the federal government would step in to make sure that private schools receiving public dollars would not discriminate against students. 

She repeatedly said that decisions would be left to school districts and parents.

  • Betsy DeVos
  • Higher Education
  • K-12
 

Follow live coverage from Times education reporter Joy Resmovits:

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(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

In and around Los Angeles:

  1. Cal State trustees met Tuesday to tackle a tight budget.
  2. Could Ref Rodriguez be the next president of the L.A. Unified Board of Education?

In California:

  1. California's colleges hail the return of year-round Pell grants.
  2. Sacramento Unified's new superintendent is a data-loving education reformer.

Nationwide:

  1. What you need to know about how Trump's budget affects public schools and their students.
  2. An elite New Hampshire boarding school named 13 faculty members who had been involved in sexual misconduct.
  • Betsy DeVos
  • Higher Education
  • K-12
  • LAUSD
  • Charter Schools
(Bryan Chan / Los Angeles Times)

President Trump’s budget proposal, released Tuesday, seeks to cut education funding by $9.2 billion overall. It would take away some federal support, such as money for the Special Olympics and a reading initiative, while promoting school vouchers and boosting dollars for charter schools.

To U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, the plan is “an historic investment in America’s students.”

To others, it is anything but. Lily Eskelsen García, president of the National Education Assn., called it a “wrecking ball,” California Supt. of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said “it fails,” and Obama administration Education Secretary John B. King Jr. called it “an assault on the American dream.”