The Changing Role of County Offices of Education

"County offices of education occupy a critical role in California’s Statewide System of Support and have a responsibility to lead the continuous improvement of the districts they support. In order to fulfill this role, COEs are undergoing cultural and organizational shifts to better facilitate continuous improvement. The first and most difficult shift is leading a mindset shift that COEs — and all actors throughout the system — are responsible for improving student outcomes." (emphasis added)

"The role of county offices of education (COEs) has changed significantly since the enactment of the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) in 2013.

COEs have long held critical roles in California’s education system as fiscal arbiters to districts, resource providers and administrators of specialized programs, and service providers for students in the justice system. 

The passing of LCFF and related policy structures such as the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) and the Statewide System of Support (SSS) established that COEs also have to provide ongoing support to districts and other local education agencies to drive continuous improvement. In this new role, COEs are responsible for supporting districts in reviewing data and developing plans that improve student outcomes over time.2 Making the transition from compliance monitoring to building capacity for continuous improvement has required COEs and their leadership to reframe and adjust their organizational focus, culture, and structures and processes."


The State of California is the Primary Funding Source for K-12 Schools

"In 2018–19, California public schools received a total of $97.2 billion in funding from three sources: the state (58%), property taxes and other local sources (32%), and the federal government (9%). These shares vary across school districts. Of the 6.2 million K–12 students in California, about nine out of ten attend one of the nearly 9,000 regular schools in 1,026 school districts while the other 11% of students attend about 1,228 charter schools—which are publicly funded but not subject to some state regulations. More than half of public school students are economically disadvantaged, and about a quarter are English Learners."


Setting Direction for Increased Educational Opportunity and Success

I attended the 2019 California Democrats Endorsing Convention this past weekend as an elected Delegate for Assembly District 22. In advance of the weekend, I submitted amendments to the Party's PLATFORM in the Education, Disabilities and Criminal Justice "Planks."

I was excited to learn that the Platform Committee was recommending that a number of my proposed amendments (also edited by Tiffanee Jones & signed on to by Austin Tam, Shay Franco-Clausen & Hene Kelly) were being recommended for approval by the entire State Delegation.

This morning (Sunday, November 17th) the Platform amendments were passed by the Party's State Delegates (myself included) and NINE (9) of the amendments were those proposed in our submissions (See below)!

This updated statement of Party values, which includes statements of disabilities rights, as well as acknowledgment of biases in our systems that unfairly impact and impinge upon the civil & human rights of many demographic groups is important!

Thanks to my team, thanks to the Platform Committee, the Plank subcommittees. and to the CADEM Delegates for approving the Platform amendments today!

🌟 Plank: Criminal Justice/Adopted Changes:

  • Support the increased oversight of juvenile justice agencies and the implementation of trauma-responsive justice systems grounded in adolescent development to yield better outcomes for youth and reduce racial and socioeconomic inequalities;

  • Work toward ending the systemic bias that harms students with disabilities and disadvantages students based on racial and socioeconomic status.

🌟 Plank: Disabilities/Adopted Changes:

  • Encourage municipalities and local governments to establish disability advisory bodies, such as commissions on disabilities, to assist in considering issues, needs, accommodations and unique perspectives of people with disabilities;

  • Prioritize making California a leader in embracing inclusive educational practices and achieving successful educational outcomes for students with disabilities;

🌟 Plank: Education/Adopted Changes:

  • Strive for full proficiency in English language arts and mathematics especially for historically low performing demographic subgroups such as socioeconomically disadvantaged students, students with disabilities, foster youth, English language learners, and certain historically underperforming ethnic groups;

  • Work to close our opportunity and achievement gaps by leveraging the flexibility of Local Control Funding Formula, engage parents and communities to develop accountability plans benefiting all students, particularly low income, English learners, foster children and students with disabilities;

  • Seek to end zero tolerance policies that criminalize student behavior, work to identify the root causes of behavior and institute school discipline reforms that are centered around counseling, education and positive behaviors;

  • Ensure that sworn peace officers in schools are adequately trained to work with children and teenagers, that the use of force against students is unacceptable except in extreme circumstances, recognize and address persistent issues of bias such as institutional racism, and understand the need for increased empathy of potential atypical reactions of students with disabilities;

  • Advocate for schools to use restorative policies and practices and to engage in regular bias training in regard to student discipline situations to halt the school-to-prison pipeline;

This is progress! And it is exciting to be able to make this contribution to the Party's Platform and Vision for the future!


NAEP shows little to no change in math but a significant decline in 8th-grade reading

"The latest scores of NAEP, the closely watched national assessment taken by a sample of 4th- and 8th-graders in every state, showed that California largely followed the national pattern this year with little to no change in math but a significant decline in 8th-grade reading on a scale of 500 points."

"As with [California's] annual standardized assessment, the Smarter Balanced test, there remain huge disparities in performance on NAEP among racial and demographic groups and progress in closing the gaps has been mixed."

California Student Groups Speak 67 Different Languages

English learners are a significant portion of California public school students.

As of the Fall of 2018:

The 1,195,988 English learners constitute 19.3 percent of the total enrollment in California public schools.

A total of 2,587,609 students (English Learners and Fluent English Proficient) speak a language other than English in their homes. This number represents about 41.8 percent of the state's public school enrollment.

The majority of English learners (70.2 percent) are enrolled in the elementary grades, kindergarten through grade six. The rest (29.8 percent) are enrolled in the secondary grades, seven through twelve, and in the ungraded category.

Although English learner data are collected for 67 language groups, 93 percent speak one of the top ten languages in the State:


Grateful for the Opportunity to Teach

As a young teacher, I dedicated myself to ensuring that my students had the best possible experience in the classroom and that they learned to read - and to love school! I am forever grateful for the opportunity to be part of their educational experience.

#EducationMatters #ForOurKids


Yes, I want to connect with Chelsea!