Sept. 24th
Debra Duardo, M.S.W., Ed.D.
Los Angeles County Superintendent of Schools


Our families have six days left to be counted in the 2020 Census, the results of which will impact our programs and communities for the next decade. LA County is still behind the 2010 Census response rate at 64 percent.

We are facing extraordinary challenges to educate our students and keep them safe. But we must do all we can in these remaining days to ensure LA County is properly represented and critical programs are adequately funded.

Please join me and commit to empowering our teachers and school staff on the ground to take one minute to remind parents and caregivers how important it is that they be counted. As trusted messengers, their final words of encouragement could make a difference.
Public Health Update
CDPH Blueprint for a Safer Economy:

There have been questions around the California Dept. of Public Health's Blueprint for a Safer Economy and its requirement that county data need to be sustained for four weeks.

First two weeks: 

To advance:

  • A county must have been in the current tier for a minimum of three weeks.

  • A county must meet criteria for the next less restrictive tier for both measures for the prior two consecutive weeks to progress to the next tier.

  • In addition, the state will establish health equity measures that demonstrate a county's ability to address the most impacted communities within a county.

Second two weeks: 

Question: Can my school reopen under this blueprint? 

  • Schools in the Widespread (purple) tier aren’t permitted to reopen for in-person instruction, unless they receive a waiver from their local health department for TK-6 grades.

  • Schools can reopen for in-person instruction once their county has been in the Substantial (red) tier for at least two weeks. 

Note: This information is from the state’s public health guidance. The actual reopening public health order must come from LA County Public Health.

In-school administration of PSAT/SAT: 

  • LA County Public Health has received guidance from the California Dept. of Public Health on in-school administration of the PSAT and SAT exams. It is permitted as long as the activity occurs in compliance with all guidelines for small group cohorts and other infection-control requirements as outlined in the LA County Public Health K-12 Reopening Protocol.

  • Tests can be administered only in small groups of no more than 12 students in a room with proper attention to physical distancing, face coverings and up to two adult test proctors. Care should be taken that the different cohorts do not mix or gather together upon arrival or departure or during break times. Supplies (pencils, etc.) should be used by single individuals and not shared to the extent possible. 
 
COVID-19 testing for staff:

  • LA County Public Health does not mandate that staff be tested for COVID-19 before returning to work. Nor does County Public Health mandate that staff provide documentation of COVID-19 test results. Districts that want to be stricter than the county in regard to staff testing are advised to consult legal counsel for guidance.
Curriculum & Instruction
Webinar on civic online reasoning:
 
LACOE is proud to present the webinar “Navigating Social Media in an Election Year: A Book Talk with Sam Wineburg” on Thursday, Oct. 1, 3:30-4:30 pm. 
  
As the presidential election nears, we are overwhelmed by information through multiple channels. How do we help our students and ourselves separate fact from fiction?  
  
This engaging webinar with Sam Wineburg, professor of Education and History at Stanford University and founding director of the Stanford History Education Group, will provide tools and resources to develop civic online reasoning through a guided discussion of his book, “Why Learn History (When It’s Already on Your Phone)."

Register early to receive a free copy of the book (while supplies last), sent to your home to read in advance. 
  
The Zoom link will be sent on Oct. 1. Register for the webinar.
Girls Empowerment Conference
LA County Parks invites all girls ages 11-18 to take part in the 5th annual iMatter: Girls Empowerment Conference, an annual tradition that encourages girls to turn up the volume on their own voices and believe in a life of possibilities by building their confidence, exploring pathways to college and expanding their career goals.

This year, the conference is a free virtual event for the entire month of October. Registration is free and required.

From Oct. 1-31, LA County Parks will host virtual daily workshops, panels and keynote speakers plus links to resources and activities to keep girls engaged all month long. Each week will cover a new topic to show girls that they can dream big about their future.

Girls can participate in virtual workshops and book clubs, join virtual watch parties of fascinating documentaries and listen to/ask questions of inspiring speakers. Girls are invited to join and participate in all events.

The conference kicks off Oct. 1 at 4:30 pm with “Women in Leadership in Los Angeles County,” a virtual speaker panel including LA County Parks and Recreation Director Norma Edith García-González.
School Communities Symposium Series
“Hope, Connection, Wellbeing: Leading with Resilience in School Communities” is a symposium series organized by LACOE, the LA County Dept. of Mental Health, UCLA and California Mental Health Services.

The first session on “Racial Justice & Educational Equity,” held Sept. 23, drew 450 participants. It featured an expert panel that discussed the impact of racial injustice and educational inequity on students, families and school communities; engaging students and families through an equity and social justice lens; and improving issues of equity. 

Three sessions remain:

  • Sept. 30: Educator & School Staff Wellbeing 
  • Oct. 7: Parent/Caregiver Engagement 
  • Oct. 14: Youth Voice and Leadership

State Budget
On Sept. 18, SB 820 (Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review), a budget trailer bill relating to education finance, was signed by the Governor and became effective immediately upon his signature.

On Sept. 22, the Department of Finance reported the following revenues for August:

  • Preliminary General Fund agency cash receipts for the first two months of the fiscal year were $4.544 billion above the 2020-21 Budget Act forecast of $35.604 billion. Cash receipts for the month of August were $1.632 billion above the forecast of $8.17 billion. Preliminary General Fund agency cash receipts for the entire 2019-20 fiscal year were $1.135 billion above the 2020-21 Budget Act forecast of $123.395 billion, or 0.9-percentage point above forecast. Total collections for March through August 2020 were down by 5 percent from the same period in 2019.

  • Personal income tax cash receipts to the General Fund for the first two months of the fiscal year were $3.646 billion above forecast. Cash receipts for August were $975 million above the forecast of $4.999 billion. Withholding cash receipts were $837 million above the forecast of $4.799 billion. Other cash receipts were $359 million higher than the forecast of $647 million. Refunds issued in August were $203 million higher than the expected $358 million. Proposition 63 requires that 1.76 percent of total monthly personal income tax collections be transferred to the Mental Health Services Fund. The amount transferred to the fund in August was $19 million more than the forecast of $88 million.

  • Sales and use tax cash receipts were $1.176 billion above forecast for the first two months of the fiscal year. Cash receipts for August were $574 million above the forecast of $2.086 billion. August cash receipts include a portion of the final payment for the second quarter sales, which was due July 31. August cash receipts also include the first prepayment for third quarter sales.

  • Corporation tax cash receipts for the first two months of the fiscal year were $176 million below the forecast of $5.029 billion. Cash receipts for August were $176 million above the month’s forecast of $228 million. Estimated payments were $133 million above the forecast of $117 million, and other payments were $56 million higher than the $172 million forecast. Total refunds for the month were $14 million higher than the forecast of $61 million.

  • Insurance tax cash receipts for the first two months of the fiscal year were $31 million below forecast. Insurance tax cash receipts for August were $32 million below the forecast of $604 million. Cash receipts from alcoholic beverage, tobacco taxes and pooled money interest were $23 million below forecast for the first two months of the fiscal year and were $4 million below the forecast of $58 million for the month of August.
Student Support Services
Mental Health First Aid training:

LACOE’s Student Support Services team has been trained to provide Mental Health First Aid training. Youth Mental Health First Aid teaches how to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illness and substance use disorders.

This virtual training gives adults who work with youth the skills they need to reach out and provide initial support to adolescents (ages 12-18) who may be developing a mental health or substance use problem and help connect them to the appropriate care.


Resources for Districts & Schools
Keep Learning California (Attendance Works, Families In Schools, PIQE) click here

Strategic Communications Templates for the 2020-21 School Year (LACOE) click here

Early Childhood Education Resources (LACOE) click here

120 Digital Resources for Home-Schooling (TEACH.com) click here