Well, it’s going to be an interesting year. If you want to stay on top of updates in state and county policy that will affect AUSD, as well as interesting pieces about education in these pandemic times, please follow my facebook page (link to your right).
My goals for this fall:
- Building a page on equity in AUSD—where do we stand, what gets measured, how do other districts approach opportunity gaps, and what is AUSD doing to address them? Our Superintendent recently created a new task force on this, headed up by board trustee Brian Doss. Albany has a long way to go, but I am hopeful that we are building some momentum toward real change.
- Make sure people know about Proposition 15 – Schools & Communities First – a measure that would undo the practice of freezing commercial tax assessments, with some exemptions for small businesses. This would undo some of the disastrous effects of Proposition 13, which led to a decades-long collapse in California education funding. I actually went to school for a year in California for 3rd grade, in the late 1970s when California was known for its investment in schools. Now we are at the very bottom in school funding. Vote yes on 15!
- Continuing to educate myself about ethnic studies in California & Albany. The state recently presented a second draft of the proposed ethnic studies curriculum, which must be adopted by early 2021. There has been a lot of resistance to parts of the curriculum, and a lot of disappointment by ethnic studies activists in how the state is responding. AUSD board Vice President Clementina Durón has been an activist for ethnic studies for decades, starting at UC Berkeley. More information on the CDE recommendations and the draft Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum can be found on the IQC Agenda for August 13. CDE’s recommendations to the draft Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum are in alignment with state law and the State Board of Education-adopted (SBE) guidelines, which can be found on the CDE Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum Guidelines web page. UPDATE: the bill to make ethnic studies a high school requirement is on the Governor’s desk as of September 14. Follow Assembly Bill 331