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Educational governance & policy

Educational governance & leadership

California made a fundamental change its approach to education in 2013, bringing greater local discretion over local decision making in public education. These changes were intended to support both equity and system improvement in California’s schools.

Districts are primarily accountable for school improvement and receive assistance from the Statewide System of Support. As part of this System of Support, county offices of education are responsible for (1) annually approving their districts’ Local Control Accountability Plans (LCAPs), in which districts outline their intended activities and resource allocation strategies to meet the eight state priorities delineated in the LCFF legislation; and (2) providing direct assistance when districts fail to meet expectations in priority areas.

The 2013 Local Control Funding Formula also shifted the way California governs and funds its schools, giving greater authority over resources to locally elected school boards and districts, and emphasizing the importance of local stakeholder engagement. 

PACE research in this area is designed support the continued development of these systems, and strengthen educational governance at all levels. 

Recent Topic Publications
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California and the rest of the country are enduring a pandemic-induced economic recession, and school and district leaders are bracing for the fallout. Funding for California schools had improved rapidly between 2013 and 2019, with districts…
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Pivoting Amid COVID-19
The educators of Ayer Elementary in Fresno Unified School District began their continuous improvement journey in 2016. The stability of their underlying organizational conditions to engage in improvement work—a shared purpose, mutual trust,…
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Removing Barriers to Data Accessibility
Parental engagement has been shown to be a key lever for improving outcomes for all students. It can positively influence grades, test scores, and graduation rates for all students. Increased engagement is also shown to improve the outcomes of…
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How can schools provide high-quality distance and blended learning during the pandemic? This brief includes a mix of rigorous evidence from extant studies, data from interviews with practitioners who described their learnings from informal…