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May 31, 2012
Re "A lifeline for L.A. schools?," Column, May 26 After reading Sandy Banks' column, I decided to do a little fact checking for elementary through secondary school funding. I went to the most recent U.S. Census report, which has data from 2009. Here is what I found: California spends about $61 billion a year, the most of any state. Per-pupil spending is $9,657; the U.S. average is $10,499. California is ranked 30th of the 50 states in per-student spending.
April 27, 2014
Re “School activist won't be ignored,” Column One, April 23 Kudos to Sally Smith. We need her in Long Beach, where the school district is determined to institutionalize income inequality by making most school activities accessible to wealthier kids only. When you implement a system in which those who pay the most get the most, then those who can't feel left out and are not as likely to succeed. My complaints to the school board and to the state superintendent went unanswered.
July 31, 1998
Today our children come home from school knowing more about condoms, drugs and guns than their ABCs. When did our schools go from teaching the three Rs to an experimental lab for children? A friend's child gets migraine headaches but cannot carry an aspirin to school. Schools have lost their credibility with me when they can no longer tell the difference between an aspirin and illegal drugs. If our children are going to be academically ready to compete in the 21st century, we can no longer allow schools to experiment with them.
April 27, 2014 | By Eric Sondheimer
Rank, School (W-L) Comment (last week's ranking) 1. HARVARD-WESTLAKE (SS-Div. 1, 16-4-1) vs. Alemany, Tuesday (2) 2. FOUNTAIN VALLEY (SS-Div. 1, 15-6) vs. Newport Harbor, Wednesday (16) 3. LONG BEACH WILSON (SS-Div. 1, 20-4) at Lakewood (Blair Field), Monday (6) 4. JSERRA (SS-Div. 1, 15-5) at Servite, Tuesday (3) 5. HART (SS-Div. 1, 16-3-1) at West Ranch, Wednesday (5) 6. HUNTINGTON BEACH (SS-Div. 1, 15-4) at Marina, Wednesday (1) 7. GREAT OAK (SS-Div.
March 28, 2013
Re "Voters split on Brown's schools proposal," USC Dornsife/Times Poll, March 23 This front-page article is complemented by "Superstar schools' downside," Sandy Banks' informative column on the next page. The lead item covers Gov. Jerry Brown's plan "to shift money from rich schools to poor ones" to address glaring educational inequities. Banks' piece illuminates how schools surrounded by wealthy neighborhoods typically provide enhanced curriculums that schools in poorer areas can only dream about.
May 26, 2012
Re "States finding zero tolerance in schools no longer adds up," May 23 One of the reasons that schools favor zero-tolerance policies is that they remove the school from reasoning, critical thinking and individual evaluation. They can just look up the punishment and administer it. Neat and tidy. If a parent questions the punishment, the school can say it's out of its hands. We expect our schools to teach children critical thinking and to interpret what they read using their own individual views.
June 12, 2012
Re "Clinic fills a need at school," June 5 I don't know if it is cultural arrogance or moral confusion that motivates the L.A. Unified School District to collaborate with Planned Parenthood in running a clinic at a Boyle Heights high school. We are told that the birth control services offered are free and confidential, which of course means that the 16-year-old girl you profile can obtain these services without telling her parents. Given that the school is in a "heavily Latino" neighborhood, many of the parents are likely Roman Catholic and would not be happy about this service offered by the clinic.
August 29, 2012
Re "A disheartening lesson," Column, Aug. 25 A cheating scandal involving standardized tests should not come as a surprise to anyone who has been following what has been happening to our public schools. The fear that exists in our schools hangs over students, teachers and administrators like a death shroud. When I came into education 26 years ago the question we were asking was how do I turn my students on to learning. Today the question is how do I get students to pass the test.
November 30, 2009
Stones Into Schools Promoting Peace With Books, Not Bombs, in Afghanistan and Pakistan Greg Mortenson Viking: 420 pp., $26.95
March 2, 2013
Guns and gun control were ever-present topics this week, from a Times article about a small town in Utah "considering guns for all" to the fatal shootings of two police officers in Santa Cruz. And, of course, attentive Times readers also responded to their fellow readers on other subjects. Earlier this week, letter writer Elizabeth Barnert wrote that "encouraging gun ownership without promoting basic safety measures, such as proper storage of guns - unloaded and locked - is irresponsible.
April 26, 2014 | By Jason Song
El Camino Real Charter High School claimed the national 2014 Academic Decathlon title on Saturday, marking the seventh time the Woodland Hills school has won the honor. The school earned 52,601.1 points out of a possible 60,000 and beat out 52 other teams for the title. Granada Hills Charter High School finished second, about 200 points behind El Camino, a difference of about 10 questions. El Camino also narrowly edged Granada Hills in the California competition in March. The title is L.A. Unified's 15th national championship.
April 26, 2014 | By Cindy Carcamo
A teenage boy suspected of fatally stabbing his high school classmate at a Connecticut high school just hours before the junior prom is under psychiatric evaluation, the teen's lawyer said Saturday. At the same time, friends of stabbing victim Maren Sanchez mourned her death, sharing memories of a girl they described as an outgoing teen who served as something of a “counselor” for many students and was known for heartfelt chats by her locker. The 16-year-old boy, whose name is being withheld because of his age, will not be in court during Monday's scheduled arraignment, his attorney, Edward J. Gavin, told the Los Angeles Times.
April 25, 2014 | By Michael Muskal
A 16-year-old boy refused to drop the knives he was using in a slashing attack at a Pennsylvania school and told a school official that he had “more people to kill,” according to a police affidavit released Friday. Alex Hribal was arraigned Friday on 21 counts of attempted homicide and 21 counts of aggravated assault in the April 9 attack at Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville, Pa., about 20 miles from Pittsburgh. Hribal, who remains in custody, was originally charged with four counts of attempted homicide and 21 counts of aggravated assault.
April 25, 2014 | Valerie J. Nelson
Far older than most of the regulars at his weekly South Bay swing-dancing class, the World War II veteran invariably shuffles in, sidles up to his instructor and unwittingly gives voice to a scientific truth: "I'm here for my anti-aging therapy and happiness treatment. " Dancing has long been lauded as a great physical workout, yet research has increasingly shown that social dancing, such as swing, a lively, improvisational style that requires rapid-fire decision-making in concert with a partner, is also beneficial to both mind and spirit.
April 25, 2014 | By Michael Muskal
A 16-year-old girl was stabbed to death inside a Milford, Conn., high school just hours before the junior prom on Friday, officials said. Maren Sanchez died from her wounds at Bridgeport Hospital, Milford Police Chief Keith Mello told reporters. “We are obviously devastated by the loss of one of our students,” School Superintendent Elizabeth Feser said at the news conference from the scene. A 16-year-old boy has been taken into custody, officials said. His name is being withheld because of his age. Students at the school told reporters that the incident was caused by a dispute over a date for the junior prom, originally scheduled for Friday night but canceled because of the stabbing.
April 25, 2014 | By Chad Terhune
In the wake of a $10-million payout to a whistleblower, UCLA's School of Medicine is drawing more scrutiny over its financial ties to industry and the possibility that they compromised patient care. A new study in this month's Journal of the American Medical Assn. raised a red flag generally about university officials such as Eugene Washington, the dean of UCLA's medical school who also serves on the board of healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson. The world's biggest medical-products maker paid Washington more than $260,000 in cash and stock last year as a company director.
April 25, 2014 | By Anne Harnagel
What kid (or even a parent or grandparent) wouldn't want to attend gladiator school, learn how to make gelato and craft their own Carnival mask? All these activities and more are part of an 11-day family adventure, designed for children ages 8 and older, offered by Perillo's Learning Journeys and Smithsonian Journeys. The tour begins with an exploration of Venice and a glass-making factory on the island of Murano. Then it's on to Modena and the new museum dedicated to Enzo Ferrari, and to Maranello, home of the Galleria Ferrari museum, Ferrari factory and test track.
April 24, 2014 | By Steven Borowiec, This post has been corrected. See the note at the bottom for details.
ANSAN, South Korea - Seniors from the high school that lost scores of students in last week's ferry sinking returned to class Thursday, a step toward resuming normal routines in the community that's become the focal point of South Korea's biggest maritime tragedy in decades. Of the 476 people aboard the Sewol when disaster struck on April 16, 340 were staff and students from Danwon High School. As of Thursday afternoon, a total of 171 people had been confirmed dead and 131 were still listed as missing.
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