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Michael Kirst, Professor Emeritus of Stanford Graduate School of Education and President of California State Board of Education, gives update and progress on the politics and policy of Common Core implementation

By Clifton B. Parker

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge ruled June 10 that California's teacher tenure laws deprive students of their constitutional right to an education. The closely watched case, Vergara v. State of California, could change the way teachers are hired and fired in the state and around the nation.

A court ruling on Tuesday striking down job protections for teachers in California deals a sharp blow to unions — and will likely fuel political movements across the nation to eliminate teacher tenure.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Rolf M. Treu found five California laws governing the hiring and firing of teachers unconstitutional. But it was his language, more than the ruling itself, that will shake the political debate.

California's school districts should rethink their budget priorities upon receiving new state funding in the years ahead. When voters approved Proposition 30 in 2012, they created an unprecedented opportunity to reinvent the state's troubled K-12 school system, according to a new report from Stanford's Policy Analysis for California Education.

By Andrew Myers

Like a growing number of school systems across the country, San Francisco Unified School District is tasked with educating increasing rolls of students for whom English is not their first language. In the United States, the school-aged population has grown a modest 10 percent in the last three decades, while the number of children speaking a language other than English at home has soared by 140 percent.

By Lesli A. Maxwell

By the time they reach 5th grade, English-language learners in San Francisco's public schools were equally proficient in English regardless of whether they had been in a bilingual program or had received all their instruction in English, a recent study from Stanford University researchers has found.

By Bruce Fuller

Stakes were low but passions ran high as fervid 4-year-olds shouted the names of farm animals in Spanish and then in English. “Vaca, cow! Pollo, chicken!” Acing the translation, they snapped colorful tokens onto matching pictures as I watched a feisty round of bilingual bingo at a California preschool last month.

PACE directors (Bruce Fuller, Susanna Loeb, and Dominic Brewer) are named to the 2014 RHSU Edu-Scholar Public Influence rankings. The metrics recognize university-based scholars in the U.S. who are contributing most substantially to public debates about education. The rankings offer a useful, if imperfect, gauge of the public influence edu-scholars had in 2013.

Michael Kirst will mark a half-century in the education policy trenches next year, an anniversary that coincides with major decisions on a landmark school-finance plan he crafted, sold to Gov. Jerry Brown, and now is trying to bring to fruition as president of the California State Board of Education.

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