Some cities in California impose a voting age of 16 for school races

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High school students in Oakland and Berkeley helped pass measures to give 16- and 17-year-olds the right to vote in school board elections.

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Hello and happy Tuesday! Today is August 30. I’m Lasherica, the engagement reporter, and I’ve been thinking about something a lot lately. (Actually, I’m too thoughtful, so it’s a common thing for me!)

Covering K-12 education, I’ve worked with different school boards – bickering boards, complacent boards, and uncommunicative boards. You name it. In these cases, even when school boards apparently have no problem but go about their business without asking questions or raising concerns, parents and students often seem to be the ones not being heard.

But there’s this EdSource story by Carolyn Jones that I read the first week of August (I told you I was very concerned about it). He talks about a group of voters who I think could change the way school boards interact with their constituents: 16- and 17-year-olds.

High school students in Oakland and Berkeley helped pass measures to give 16- and 17-year-olds the right to vote in school board elections, Jones reported.

And honestly, I think council members, individually and as a unit, would act differently if teenagers had the right to vote.

I have seen how school boards and school board dynamics can change in an election year.

I think emancipated students could help hold elected officials accountable.

Think about it: how would board members vote if those directly affected could vote? Would board members engage with parents differently, knowing that parent attitudes could influence how the student perceives something and vice versa?

“I didn’t feel heard or valued in this conversation as an educator, and that’s why I ran for the school board,” said Sarah Kirby-Gonzalez, Washington Unified board member of Sacramento, during an EdSource roundtable about his discussion with a senator.

Although the discussion was on another subject, these words should resonate with elected officials. And let me be clear. Even though I’m talking specifically about school boards, places like Culver City in Los Angeles County will decide in the November 8 ballot whether 16- and 17-year-olds should vote for school boards, city council and other measures local, Ed Source reported.

School districts are always talking about the importance of student voices and perspectives. Why not have that student voice in the voting pool?

“We are not exempt from things that happen in our community,” student Julia Rottenburg said in the story. “We should have a say in the things that affect us.”

NOW HERE ARE THE LATEST FROM THE EDUCATION LABORATORY

Jim Costa of Fresno proposes bill that would give millions to colleges in poor areas

Fresno State and three other California State Universities would be eligible for the money.

When will Bullard High School’s cell phone ban begin? How will this work? Questions and answers

The Education Lab has compiled a list of questions and answers based on conversations with Bullard’s director and Fresno Unified management.

Many Fresno-area students already qualify for free money for the University of California

How to know if you have funds.

Union urges Clovis Schools to invest millions more in mental health staff and programs

School psychologists say Clovis Unified needs to address decades-old systemic issues.

Last week’s newsletter briefly covered how mental health staff help teachers do their jobs and why some employees at Clovis School want the district to be more like Fresno Unified.

MORE NEWS ON EDUCATION IN THE FRESNO AREA

Fresno Unified’s African American Academic Acceleration (A4) and Student Engagement departments are hosting a family workshop, “Building Blocks for Black Excellence.” The Sept. 12 event will feature four guest speakers, including award-winning authors and educators, dinner, and childcare. The district is asking families to confirm their attendance by September 5. The event will take place from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Fresno Convention Center.

More than 600 people will be at the ninth annual State of Our Children luncheon on September 1 7:30 a.m. to 9:15 a.m. at the Clovis Veteran Memorial District. Organized by the Children’s Movement of Fresno with the theme “Bringing Us All In”, the event will include a conversation with leaders of the Fresno Resident Council, a group formed in 2021 that wants to ensure that children, equity and justice are at the center of Fresno County policymaking, according to an announcement from the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools.

The Fresno and Clovis Unified School Districts join other school systems statewide and nationally in providing free lunches to their students. Through the Community Eligibility Provision under the National School Meals Program and the School Breakfast Program, all students in very poor schools receive free meals without having to complete the Meal Application for Free Meal Status or reduced. In some cases, an entire school district is eligible for free meals, while in other cases, only certain schools within a district are eligible, while other schools will require the meal application to be completed by its students. . All FUSD schools are eligible.

“This supports the district’s efforts to remove all barriers to student learning and helps ensure students don’t go hungry in school while they try to learn,” Fresno Unified said in a statement. press release dated August 12.

For Clovis Unified, the following schools will receive free meals for all students: Boris, Clark, CCDS Elementary, CCDS Secondary, Clovis East, Clovis Elementary, Cole, Fancher Creek, Gateway, Gettysburg, Jefferson, Kastner, Lincoln, Mickey Cox, Miramonte, Mountain View, Nelson, Pinedale, Reyburn, Sierra Vista, Tarpey, Temperance-Kutner and Weldon.

For the second year, the local branch of the Asian Real Estate Association of America donated school supplies to all students at Storey Elementary School.

STILL WANT MORE EDUCATION NEWS? HERE’S WHAT WE READ

Julianna’s List

Fearing a ‘budget cliff’, district leaders are hesitant to hire full-time teachers

A new Rand survey suggests that while districts are hiring at higher rates than before the pandemic, most of those new hires are tutors, paraprofessionals and substitutes — but not full-time teachers. | The 74

Charter schools favored by many parents who switched kids during pandemic, survey finds

A recent survey indicated that of the approximately 25% of parents who transferred their students to a new school during the pandemic, most transferred their students to charter schools. | EdSource

Lasherica’s List

It’s time to fix the two-tier faculty system at California community colleges

“There are no credible research findings to suggest that part-time instructors are only 50% as effective as full-time instructors, as their reduced rate of pay suggests.” | EdSource

‘Summer melt’ has been bad during the pandemic, and experts fear it could get even worse

“Students graduate with the best intentions of going to college or even committing to a school, but then life happens: work, family and fear get in the way.” | The Hechinger Report

What it will take to ensure literacy for all California students

“Meeting the literacy skills needs of all students in a state like California – where 43% of students come from homes where the first language is not English – requires not only understanding what all students need to experience in the process of learning to read, but also the special needs of multilingual learners, as well as the needs of those at risk of reading difficulties and those who may suffer from dyslexia or other cognitive disorders. ‘learning. | EdSource

A principal in Dallas has lost a fifth of her teachers. Can it hire enough from day one?

A Dallas elementary school principal’s search for replacements for one-fifth of his teaching staff proved compelling to many. | Education week

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Lasherica Thornton is the engagement reporter for the Fresno Bee Education Lab in Fresno. She was previously an Education Reporter at the Jackson Sun, a Gannett newspaper and USA Today Network in Jackson, TN for over three years.

Bernard P. Love