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Jesse Randall Davidson wasn’t a stranger, some mysterious threat from the outside. He was a bearded, bespectacled, 53-year-old social studies teacher and the play-by-play announcer for the football games at Dalton High School in northwest Georgia.

But when the teacher brought a gun to school, barricaded himself in his classroom Wednesday and fired a single shot, students quickly recognized that this wasn’t just a sad local incident.

Amid national outrage over school shootings — and suggestions by President Trump that schools would be safer if some teachers packed guns — it was a political event.

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David Sanchez, second from left, founder of the Brown Berets, in 1968.
David Sanchez, second from left, founder of the Brown Berets, in 1968. (Los Angeles Times Archive / UCLA)

Teachers at Garfield High School were winding down classes for the approaching lunch break when they heard the startling sound of people — they were not sure who — running through the halls, pounding on classroom doors. “Walkout!” they were shouting. “Walkout!”

They looked on in disbelief as hundreds of students streamed out of classrooms and assembled before the school entrance, their clenched fists held high. “Viva la revolucion!” they called out. “Education, not eradication!” Soon, sheriff’s deputies were rumbling in.

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Lauren Hogg, 14, and brother David Hogg, 17, survived the Feb. 14 Parkland shooting.
Lauren Hogg, 14, and brother David Hogg, 17, survived the Feb. 14 Parkland shooting. (Jenny Jarvie / For The Times)

In and around Los Angeles:

In California:

Nationwide:

For Isabela Barry, it was time. After two weeks of tears, vigils and funerals — reliving her and her classmates’ ordeal when a gunman rampaged through their school, killing one of her best friends — the 16-year-old was ready to go back to class.

A former student was arrested early Tuesday after he made threats to “shoot up” a high school in Chino Hills, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.

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The federal response to Florida’s school massacre remained captive to competing political imperatives Tuesday, as House Republicans declined to sign onto President Trump’s proposal to arm and reward teachers willing to carry weapons, even as they made clear their aim is to oppose further restrictions on guns.

  • Higher Education
  • K-12
  • University of California
  • LAUSD
LAUSD's SEIU Local 99 workers
LAUSD's SEIU Local 99 workers (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

In and around Los Angeles:

In California:

Nationwide:

The union that represents Los Angeles school cafeteria workers, bus drivers and custodians announced Monday that it will hold a vote to authorize a strike.

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The Supreme Court handed President Trump a significant defeat Monday, turning down the administration’s plea for a quick ruling on the president’s power to end special protections for so-called Dreamers.

  • Higher Education
  • University of California
Nicholas Dirks
Nicholas Dirks (D. Ross Cameron / Associated Press)

Four years ago, Nicholas Dirks left a top job at Columbia University for the chancellorship of UC Berkeley, the nation’s top public research university. It was not a smooth ride. He faced crisis after crisis: a critical budget deficit, sexual harassment scandals, a free-speech riot, personal controversy and declining faculty confidence in his leadership. He stepped down in 2017.

Now the specialist in South Asian studies is writing a book about the history and future of the university and has returned to the classroom to teach an undergraduate seminar on the subject. He also has joined a venture to create an international school system, starting with campuses in the U.S. and China. Dirks spoke to The Times about his bumpy tenure as chancellor and his feeling that universities and the American Dream are under assault.