California school officials use Trump to mask their own failures

By Cecilia Iglesias
In announcing the end of the DACA program two weeks ago, President Trump seemed to fulfill a campaign promise to kill a program he once declared unconstitutional. But later, the president seemed to call for a permanent legislative solution that would grant resident status to people brought illegally to the country as minors. Tweeting that...

TAGS: Janet Napolitano, Santa Ana Unified School District, Tom Torlakson, Trump

Teachers Unions’ Election Day Thumping

By Larry Sand
“Teachers Unions Take a Beating in Midterm Races” “Teachers Unions Take a Shellacking” “Teachers Unions Get Schooled in 2014 Election” The above is just a small sampling of post-election headlines which flooded the media after last Tuesday’s historic election, which generated a major political shakeup in the nation’s capital as well as state houses from...

TAGS: American Enterprise Institute, American Federation of Teachers, Bruce Rauner, California Center for Parent Empowerment, Center for Education Reform, City Journal, EdSource, Gloria Romero, John Fensterwald, Kara Kerwin, Larry Sand, Lily Eskelsen Garcia, Marshall Tuck, National Education Association, Randi Weingarten, Rick Hess, Rick Scott, Rick Snyder, Scott Walker, Steve Greenhut, teachers union, Tom Corbett, Tom Torlakson, Vergara

Election Lessons for Education Reformers

By Private: Gloria Romero
Results from the Nov. 4 yielded both hits and misses regarding prospects for advancing education reform in the Golden State, along with a few immediate lessons: Understand your fight You can’t buy elections – especially the obscure post of superintendent of Public Instruction, a constitutional office created seemingly to operate as a wholly owned subsidiary...

TAGS: California Teachers Association, CTA, Gloria Romero, Marshall Tuck, Parent Empowerment Act, Tom Torlakson

The Sorry, but Unapologetic, Teachers Unions

By Larry Sand
 Unions demand apologies, but refuse to make any themselves. The cover of the November 3rd edition of Time Magazine reads “It’s nearly impossible to fire a bad teacher; some tech millionaires may have found a way to change that.” Accompanying the text is a photo of a judge’s gavel about to pound an apple. The...

TAGS: American Federation of Teachers, California Federation of Teachers, California Teachers Empowerment Network, David Welch, Larry Sand, Marshall Tuck, Michael Mulgrew, Mike Antonucci, National Education Association, New York State United Teachers, Randi Weingarten, teachers union, Tom Torlakson, United Federation of Teachers

Education Reform: #1 Issue on the Ballot in California

By Larry Sand
Reformer battles with teachers union darling for top education position in Sacramento. “Teachers Unions Are Putting Themselves On November’s Ballot” was the headline in a recent article by Haley Edwards in Time Magazine. Okay, this is hardly news, but the extent of the largess is eye-opening. Considering that this is not a presidential election year,...

TAGS: American Federation of Teachers, California Teachers Association, Dean Vogel, EdSource, education reform, Eli Broad, Larry Sand, Marshall Tuck, National Education Association, Steve Greenhut, teachers unions, Tom Torlakson, Vergara

Transitional Kindergarten: A Boondoggle by any other name….

By Larry Sand
CA announces a budget surplus — and legislators can’t wait to blow it. It’s hardly surprising, but California’s we-never-met-a-big-budget-bill-we-didn’t-like Democratic lawmakers and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson have joined hands to sponsor SB 837, new legislation that would provide free public preschool to every four-year-old child in California. The Kindergarten Readiness Act of 2014, introduced...

TAGS: California Teachers Empowerment Network, Caroline Hoxby, Darrell Steinberg, Head Start, Jerry Brown, Larry Sand, Lindsey Burke, Lisa Snell, Tom Torlakson, Transitional Kindergarten

A Blueprint for Maintaining the Status Quo

By Larry Sand
Tom Torlakson’s panel comes up with edubabble and little else in an attempt to turn around a troubled California public school system. Just when we thought we were safe from yet another “master plan for educational improvement,” A Blueprint for State Schools is bestowed on us. This 31 page monstrosity was unleashed by State Superintendent...

TAGS: school choice, teachers unions, Tom Torlakson