UCLA is blaming human error for a message that told nearly 900 high school students they’d been accepted to the university when they hadn't.
You can just imagine the reaction in 894 homes, where eager teenagers had applied for admission to UCLA. An email was sent over the weekend to tell those students about expanded financial aid, but a line at the bottom of the email said, "once again, congratulations on your admission to UCLA."
"We hope this information will assist you in making your decision to join the Bruin family in the fall," it went on.
Almost immediately, the school realized its mistake. Those students had not been admitted but were on a waiting list — and no one on that list will hear anything before next month.
In a follow-up email, the school apologized, saying that they acknowledged what an anxious time this can be for students and their families.
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L.A. Unified plans to begin collecting data on suspension rates at the individual classroom and teacher level starting this summer as part of its effort to improve its schools, a district official said today.
"It starts at the classroom level," said Isabel Villalobos, coordinator of student discipline and expulsion support for L.A. Unified. "We're building systems where we can determine is [the suspension rate because of] a particular student, a particular teacher, or is it a combination of both."
The district has worked to detail its suspension rates over the last year, tracking more details including who is suspended and for how many days, but now it will be "drilling down into the classroom" and collecting data relevant to each teacher, Villalobos said. She said the plan is to have the system up and going in July.
Wayne Tilcock / AP
File: In this Nov. 18, 2011 file photo, University of California, Davis Police Lt. John Pike uses pepper spray to move Occupy UC Davis protesters while blocking their exit from the school's quad in Davis, Calif.
When police at UC Davis pepper-sprayed a group of peaceful protestors, the outcry over the incident led to a formal investigation. The school is now set to release its report, but some elements — specifically the names of the police officers involved — will not be made public.
It was home video of an officer spraying a line of Occupy protestors as they knelt in a campus quad last November that led to public demand for an investigation. A task force led by a retired California Supreme Court Justice followed through, but the campus police union sued to stop the release of the report.
Attorneys for the union said officers’ names should be blacked out for their safety. The judge hearing the case noted that Lt. John Pike, identified as the one spraying protestors, said he received tens of thousands of threatening or derogatory text messages, emails and letters in the months after the incident. People also ordered magazines, products and food delivered to Lt. Pike’s home.
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California State Assembly.
Several bills are being heard by the state Legislature in Sacramento this week that aim to address problems with school discipline.
These include AB 2242, which seeks to reduce out-of-school suspensions for students under the category of "willful defiance," an often very subjective classification that includes behavior such as failing to bring materials to class, not paying attention or talking back. The bill would limit the use of such suspensions and instead have students sent to an in-school supervised suspension classroom.
More than 40 percent of suspensions in California are given out for "willful defiance," said Laura Faer, education rights director for the nonprofit Public Counsel. And because it is so subjective, it often has a much greater impact on students of color. A report released today by UCLA's The Civil Rights Project found that a black male student with disabilities was most likely to be suspended from the classroom in California compared to other students.
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A student on his way to school walks past a Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) school, in Los Angeles, California on February 13, 2009.
If you're a black male student who is disabled, you are more likely to be suspended from the classroom in California's largest districts than any other student, according to a report released today by UCLA's The Civil Rights Project.
The report, and its spreadsheet, covers 500 districts statewide and are based on 2009-10 data from the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights. It shows significant disparities in suspension rates based on gender and race as well as disability status in statewide and district specific data.
"In too many districts we're no longer saving out-of-school suspension for to be a measure of last resort," said Daniel Losen, co-author of the report and director of the Center for Civil Rights Remedies at UCLA's Civil Rights Project.
In 2009-10 more than 400,000 students were suspended and sent out of the classroom at least once, according to the data. The California Department of Education has reported more than 750,000 total suspensions in 2009-10, which means some of the 400,000 students were suspended multiple times that year.