Education Secretary DeVos explicitly OKs controversial state school evaluations

A nearly year-long fight between the Trump administration and the California state government over school accountability ended with an unexpected twist last week when U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos (pictured) explicitly endorsed a state student progress metric that reformers

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Why UCLA could face Harvard-type backlash over Asian admissions

The firestorm over a recent New York Times story – about the low rankings that Harvard admissions officials consistently gave thousands of Asian-American applicants for personality, likability, courage, kindness and how respected they were – caught the eye of California politicians. Rep.

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New housing law’s clout on display with OK of huge Cupertino project

A huge housing/multi-use project proposed for Silicon Valley faced strong opposition. Nearby residents hated it and blocked smaller versions of the project that were on the 2016 ballot. The mayor called it out of place and sniped at outsiders who

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CA Budget: New spending dwarfed by billions set aside in reserves

When the annual California budget debate began in earnest with Gov. Jerry Brown’s release of a proposed 2018-19 fiscal plan in January, progressives were ready to go with a long list of new spending proposals. Many hoped to both expand

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Bill tightening police use of force rules passes committee

California legislators moved a step closer last week to tightening the rules governing police use of force. In the face of staunch opposition from law enforcement groups, the Senate Public Safety Committee voted 5-1 in favor of Assembly Bill 931

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Push to rebrand GOP undercut by evidence of potent anti-tax focus

A group of moderate California Republicans that wants the party to rebrand itself as both pro-business and pro-environment and show a willingness to work with Democrats on some issues is back in the news this week. Led by Assemblyman Chad

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Report: Prop. 47 reduced recidivism, did not cause spike in violent crime

Despite debates over the wisdom of criminal justice reforms in recent years, Proposition 47 succeeded in reducing recidivism and did not cause a spike in violent crime, according a report released last week from the Public Policy Institute of California.

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Assemblywoman cleared of harassment may face new heat

The “Me Too” anti-sexual harassment campaign that quickly yielded several resignations by state lawmakers last fall appears to have hit a lull in Sacramento with Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia, D-Bell Gardens, now seemingly on track for re-election this November despite scandalous

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#MeToo activists, criminal justice reformers at odds over judge’s recall

The voters of Santa Clara County have spoken, and the judge who in 2016 gave a light sentence of six months in jail to a Stanford swimmer convicted of three counts of felony sexual assault was recalled last week. But

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Housing Costs Are Making Bay Area Residents Reconsider

Bay Area residents are unhappy with their current economic lot and anxious, despite a strong overall economy, according to a poll released Sunday by the Bay Area Council. While California, with its vast housing market, suffered grievously during the Great

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