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1297 posts
  • Betsy DeVos
  • K-12
(Erik Lesser / European Pressphoto Agency)

The U.S. Department of Education is telling civil rights investigators that they can limit the scope of their work, according to an internal memo uncovered by ProPublica. 

The department also is circulating an internal memo that applies similar standards to cases involving transgender students — and encourages case officers to assess each on its own. 

The memo regarding transgender students lists specific instances where officers could have "subject matter jurisdiction," such as failure to use a student's preferred pronoun or a school or district's failure to fix an environment that is hostile toward transgender students. Investigations into  transgender students  being denied the right to use the bathrooms of their choice is not on that list — and the memo states that based on jurisdiction, some complaints might go forward while others, involving bathrooms, might be dismissed.

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Dr. Dre, center, with hands in pockets, views a model of the planned performing arts complex.
Dr. Dre, center, with hands in pockets, views a model of the planned performing arts complex. (Compton Unified School District)

Dr. Dre has pledged to donate $10 million to help build a performing arts complex at the new Compton High School, the Compton Unified School District told The Times on Thursday. 

“My goal is to provide kids with the kind of tools and learning they deserve,” Dre said in a statement to The Times. “The performing arts center will be a place for young people to be creative in a way that will help further their education and positively define their future.”

The complex will provide students with state-of-the-art equipment and technology, including digital media production facilities and a 1,200-seat theater.

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  • Betsy DeVos
  • Higher Education
  • K-12
  • LAUSD
  • Charter Schools
(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Quick programming note: You can expect us to slow down a bit during the summer months. But we'll be back at full speed by the time school is in session. 

In and around Los Angeles:

  1. A look at the politics behind Michelle King's contract extension.
  2. What exactly are affiliated charter schools?

Statewide:

  1. A new study says minority male students face too many hurdles on the road to completing high school and entering college.
  2. Meet California State University student trustee Maggie White, a student leader who's learned a lot about the CSU system.
  • K-12

Seven people were killed and 59 injured in an explosion Thursday at the front gate of a kindergarten in eastern China as relatives were picking up their children at the end of the school day, local officials said.

The blast at the Chuangxin Kindergarten in Fengxian, which struck at 4:50 p.m., was under investigation, the Xuzhou city government in Jiangsu province said on its microblog.

  • K-12
  • LAUSD
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Steve Zimmer is about to lose his seat on the Los Angeles school board, but he pulled off an 11th-hour political triumph by engineering a contract extension for Supt. Michelle King.

The move means that the new school board, the first with a majority supported by charter school backers, will inherit a longer commitment to King, whose performance as superintendent has received mixed reviews.

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  • Higher Education
(Christopher Woolett / courtesy of California State Student Assn.)

For two years, Maggie White has been delivering impassioned speeches as a student appointee on California State University’s board of trustees. She’s traveled 300 miles each way to board meetings in Long Beach. She’s trekked across the state to meet with fellow students on each of the system’s 23 campuses. She’s done this while also working toward a master’s degree in public administration at Cal State Stanislaus and interning 20 hours a week in the public works department of the rural city of Patterson. All while driving at least a couple of hours each day because she lives at home with her parents.

In July, she takes over as the newly elected president of the California State Student Assn., the official group representing the university system’s entire student body.

She’s busy preparing for her new role, but took a moment to talk about the students she serves and the challenges facing the largest public university system in the country.

(Photo courtesy of Travis Chen)

We asked students to let us know what their graduation speakers were sharing with them.

Here's a taste from Shawnee Mission East High School in Kansas City, Mo., and Daniel Pearl Magnet High School in Van Nuys. Videos by Celia Hack and Amanda Jimenez. 

To get involved with HS Insider, email Kyle Finck at kyle.finck@latimes.com or check out the HS Insider website.

  • Higher Education
  • K-12
  • LAUSD
  • Charter Schools
(Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Quick programming note: You can expect us to slow down a bit during the summer months. But we'll be back at full speed by the time school is in session. 

In and around Los Angeles:

  1. Advocates rallied outside a Los Angeles Unified Board of Education meeting to convince the district to allocate more money for high-needs students.
  2. In closed session, the board — which is about to get two new members — extended the contract of L.A. Unified Supt. Michelle King. 
  3. The school board also voted to get going on a unified online enrollment system

In California:

  1. The state Legislature kept  alive the Middle Class Scholarship Program that Gov. Jerry Brown had sought to end.
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  • K-12
  • LAUSD
  • For Parents
  • Charter Schools
(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Pressed by L.A. schools Supt. Michelle King, the Board of Education on Tuesday unanimously approved a plan to create an enrollment system that will allow students and families to apply to just about any schools they choose at the same time, through one online application.

The $24-million project is central to King’s strategy for increasing district enrollment. Reversing years of declining enrollment is key to her plan to keep Los Angeles Unified financially solvent while improving district academics.

  • K-12
  • LAUSD
  • For Parents
  • Charter Schools
LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King
LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King (Los Angeles Times)

In an effort to keep current district leadership in charge, a majority on the Los Angeles Board of Education has approved a contract extension for L.A. Unified Supt. Michelle King.

The 6-1 vote to extend King's contract to June 2020 occurred as two new board members are poised to take office next month, shifting the board majority to one that was heavily backed by supporters of charter schools. 

Neither of the new board members has indicated that they want to replace King — nor have any current board members — but choosing and evaluating the superintendent is a primary function of the board. In large urban districts, it's fairly common for a new board, or a board with a new majority, to want to pick its own leader.