A new program at the California Institute of the Arts is taking some of the school's arts students and preparing them for careers in the classroom.
The well-known university in Valencia has long been a hub for top arts students from around the country — and for decades, officials there have sought to formalize a process for helping arts students make their way in the world of teaching. In January, a $55,000 donation from two CalArts board of trustee members made it possible. The program, known as the CalArts Residency for Teaching Artists, launched in May and officials hope it will continue again next summer.
"We always knew that students needed a little more training in teaching," said Glenna Avila, who designed the program. "But we never had the resources per se to deepen that."
Stock photo from uncle-leo/flickr Creative Commons
Music classroom (stock).
Magnolia Public Schools asked an LA Superior Court judge Thursday to reopen two charter schools. The Los Angeles Unified school district closed the schools after an audit found missing and misused funds.
Judge Luis Lavin tentatively ruled the schools should be reopened until the next hearing, which Lavin said won't be until 2015. The final ruling is scheduled for release Friday.
“The burden is in favor of the petitioners who have children that need to go to school," Lavin told the courtroom.
Lavin did not speak to the audit (the district is calling it a "draft forensic review") or its findings and instead focused on whether the L.A. Unified school board followed lawful procedure in closing the schools.
In this April 3, 2012, file photo, teacher Bev Campbell holds up images of animals and insects for identification by students in her special education class at Amelia Earhart Elementary School in Hialeah, Fla. The Los Angeles Unified School District has been praised for boosting counselors for students in foster care, but a closer look at the budget shows many counselors may be transitioning from special education.
Next school year, the Los Angeles Unified School District is cutting the budget for psychiatric social workers for special education students by 15 percent, raising fears among the special ed social workers that their numbers will be reduced.
The district denies that it will reduce the overall number of psychiatric social workers, but a spokeswoman would not say how many social workers will be dedicated to special education next year.
"We are not cutting PSWs," said district spokeswoman Monica Carazo in an email. "In essence, we’re reshuffling the PSWs to other departments and the funding will come from different sources," she said, adding, "we are not taking away services from special ed students."
Carazo did not identify the departments to which some psychiatric social worker positions would be moved, but the district is establishing 60 new social workers slots to care for L.A. Unified's more than 8,000 students in foster care.
Monrovia mother of three Monique Hurtado doesn’t send her 3-year-old to preschool. Hurtado has her own bookkeeping business and her husband works full-time as a laser supply stock clerk.
“Financially we couldn’t afford it,” Hurtado said of the nearby preschool options.
And there was another reason: “I just feel she should stay home with me."
So she set up a preschool learning center. The big kitchen table is neatly divided into stations with paints, crayons and other art supplies. There are blocks and play dough in tubs.
And there’s a laptop computer.
Monique Hurtado found a preschool course for her child on the Internet. For years, websites have offered free preschool handouts or activity guides. Now, parents can get an entire preschool curriculum from a computer.
Two new companies for online preschool are ABC Mouse and CHALK preschool online. Neither company was willing to share exact metrics on home-use of its online products, but both said their numbers are in the tens of thousands - and growing daily.
Teachers in charter and pilot Los Angeles public schools collaborate with and trust each other significantly more than teachers in L.A. Unified's traditional large public high schools, according to a new report from University of California researchers.
"There was so much trust and acceptance that teachers eagerly observed each other and gave coaching hints and came up with new ideas and units for kids," said Berkeley professor Bruce Fuller, who leads the L.A. Teacher Ties Project, a joint venture between scholars at Berkeley and UCLA to study teacher stability and motivation in Los Angeles schools. "That’s kind of interesting because there’s lots of controversy over teacher evaluation."
Released last month, the report notes significantly higher feelings of collective responsibility toward students and their school among teachers in charter and pilot schools than teachers in traditional Los Anglees Unified public schools. Charter schools and pilot schools are both managed on site, operating with more independence from central administration.