Education

Education
5:55 pm
Fri March 27, 2015

Lucia Mar teachers authorize union to strike if negotiations with district fail

Supporters of the Lucia Mar Unified Teachers Association picket for a salary increase.
Credit Change.org "Fairly pay our teachers" petition

The union representing teachers in the Lucia Mar School District now have authorization to initiate a strike, should negotiations reach that point.

The Lucia Mar Unified Teachers Association (LMUTA) announced the support from teachers following voting on Friday.

The teachers are asking for an increase in wages to bring salaries closer to those of their colleagues working in neighboring districts, including San Luis Coastal and Santa Maria-Bonita. Lucia Mar School District leaders say they can't afford the level that's being proposed, and have made their own offer.

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Education
6:44 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

Central Coast students head to Riverside for statewide mock trial finals

Credit Flickr member Douglas Palmer

Central Coast High School students are headed to Riverside on Friday to test their abilities in the courtroom. It's all part of the statewide California Mock Trial Finals.

San Marcos High School students in Santa Barbara are hoping to return with the winning trophy for the first time in nearly a decade. Those from Arroyo Grande High would like to bring it home to San Luis Obispo County for the first time ever.

But, no matter which California-based team wins this weekend, the students will walk away with tools for success later in life, according to their teachers.

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Education
6:01 pm
Thu March 12, 2015

'All Clear' given for San Miguel schools following lockdown over gun shots

The all-clear was put in place Thursday afternoon for a couple of elementary schools in San Miguel that were put on lockdown during the noon hour.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office says a report of shots fired in the area triggered the cautionary move.

The schools—Lillian Larsen and Almond Acres Charter Academy—were deemed safe after it was determined the sound of the shots had come from nearby Camp Roberts.

The National Guard was conducting live-fire exercises around the same time, according to the sheriff's report.

Education
4:56 pm
Tue March 10, 2015

Camp Hapitok's cancelled summer session—back on again

Credit Camp Hapitok website

Camp Hapitok, local camp for children with speech and language disorders, was expected to shut down this summer, but now may continue running. 

Recently, Friends of Hapitok announced the camp would have to shutter for the summer.

The problem was a county review found the camp's agreement opened the county up to liability issues. In order to be in compliance, the county needed to remove itself as the legal employer.

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Education
6:11 pm
Mon March 9, 2015

Cal Poly investigating Saturday's roof collapse that injured several people

Aftermath of a roof collapse at Saturday morning's St. Fratty's Day party.
Credit San Luis Obispo Fire Department

Cal Poly's Greek system could be penalized following Saturday's roof collapse that injured several people, according to University spokesman Matt Lazier.

The incident happened during an annual early morning party known as Saint Fratty's Day, and appears to be the result of too many people standing on the structure.

Fraternities and sororities were placed on social probation back in January as modifications to party management policies were considered.

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Education
5:57 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

Why out-of-state student cap won't affect UCSB

Credit Wikipedia user: Coolcaesar

The University of California is putting a cap on the number of out-of-state students that can attend certain campuses next year. 

This new rule will not apply locally to UCSB. The number of non-resident students attending both Berkeley and UCLA will be capped at current levels  and UC San Diego will be held to 20 percent according to the new rule.

UCSB's non-resident percentage has more than doubled in the past five years at 9.2 percent last fall. The average for the UC system not counting those campuses under the cap program is six percent.

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Education
1:32 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

San Luis Coastal teachers and district reach a compromise

Credit Teachers Market

San Luis Coastal Unified School District teachers and district leaders recently reached a tentative agreement regarding workload and salaries.

Assistant superintendent of personnel, innovation and educational services, Rick Robinett, says that he hopes the members of the association and the school board will approve this three-year contract.

“The salient features are a four percent raise for teachers, retroactive to July 1 of 2014,” he says.

“Some clarification about prep time and putting preparation time into the contract for elementary school teachers.”

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Education
5:58 pm
Thu February 19, 2015

San Luis Coastal teachers and district prepare for Friday talks

Credit Teachers Market

Teachers and district leaders are coming together Friday to hammer out differences over work load and salaries in the San Luis Coastal Unified School District. 

Paul Orton, President of the San Luis Coastal Teachers Association, says one of the biggest improvements they hope to achieve is the addition of more prep time. 

"K through 3 teachers have no time set aside in the contract for them to work on lessons, and with this Common Core new curriculum it's an incredible amount of work load," said Orton.

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Education
6:01 pm
Wed February 18, 2015

With cases closed in recent dorm evacuations, some students left wondering

The investigations are over in the cases of two Cal Poly dorm buildings that were evacuated in late January after students reported uncontrollable coughing.

The two incidents occurred within a week of each other. The first case was reported in Santa Lucia Hall on Jan.25  and the second in Fremont Hall on Jan. 31.

Ernie Paez is a Division Chief with the Office of the State Fire Marshall and says during both incidents the hazmat teams did what they were trained to do. They took a reading of the air using their monitors, but didn't find anything.

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Education
6:25 pm
Fri February 13, 2015

Santa Maria-Bonita School District approves bilingual education

A new elementary school (yet to be named) scheduled to open in August, is the planned site for the district's upcoming dual immersion program.
Credit Santa Maria-Bonita School District

The Santa Maria-Bonita School District is moving forward with a plan to bring bilingual education to its students. The dual immersion program was approved by the superintendent and district board Thursday night.

The program will be set at the new elementary school, which is scheduled to open this August.

District Spokesperson Maggie White says the board chose not to initiate a program start date yet, but says it could go into effect as soon as the start of the next school year.

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Education
5:58 pm
Mon February 9, 2015

Community college students can be expelled for off-campus crimes under new proposal

Central Coast State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) introduced a bill in Sacramento Monday aimed at cracking down on off-campus sexual assaults for community college students.

The UC and CSU systems already have the ability to address off-campus crimes and Sen. Jackson says those policies should extend to the state's community college campuses.

Under SB 186, students could be disciplined or even expelled for off-campus behaviors such as sexual assault, physical abuse, stalking and hazing, among others.

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Education
5:35 pm
Mon February 9, 2015

Cuesta College secures accreditation for the next six years

Credit Cuesta College

The organization that determines whether community colleges in the West are competent to teach students is clearing San Luis Obispo County's Cuesta College for the next six years.

The news is a relief for the institution, that in recent years hasn't always seen such favorable reviews.

The college has been working to maintain it's accreditation since 2008, when it was first placed on probation.

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Education
6:26 pm
Fri February 6, 2015

Santa Maria-Bonita School District gets $1.8 million for math program

Students in the Santa Maria valley will soon be part of math program that uses real word applications to help teach the STEM curriculum.

The three year program pairs local teachers from the Santa Maria-Bonita School District up with the Cal Poly Mathematics department. The two have been working together since 2006.

Kate Reily, a mathematics professor at Cal Poly, says her department is excited for this newest opportunity to work with the school district.

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Education
5:45 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Free income tax help being provided by students at UCSB and Cal Poly

Credit Flickr member Chris Potter

Volunteers at both Cal Poly and UCSB are set to begin helping Central Coast residents prepare their tax returns—for free. The program is called VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance).

Levi Satterthwaite is part of the program at Cal Poly and says he's excited to be involved.

"As college seniors at Cal Poly we're trained and we're IRS certified to prepare tax returns and to help them out," said Satterthwaite. "It's a wonderful opportunity and we love to give back to the community."

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Education
1:18 pm
Wed January 28, 2015

Students seek to start a conversation about sexual assault

A recent string of sexual assaults reported by Cal Poly students has left all greek life on social probation and one fraternity is no longer recognized by the university. Two students, Hannah Poplack and Nadine Leffler wrote a 'letter to the editor' of their school's newspaper in response an article about the university's disciplinary action. 

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