In an elementary school near Sacramento, students in a transitional kindergarten class practice saying the date. With a little prodding, they shout out the day, month, and year in unison.
These kids are among several thousand California four-year olds enrolled in pre-kindergarten programs. Now state Senate Democrats want to make transitional kindergarten available to all four-year-olds. The announced their proposal today.
But expanding the state's current transitional program would cost California nearly one billion dollars by the time it’s fully implemented in the 2019-2020 school year. Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg said the money would well spent.
“I’m proud to call this wise-spending California. There are few better uses of the tax-payer dollars than investing in evidence based changed providing you people, four-year-olds, the head start that they need.”
Assembly Democrats have also made funding transitional kindergarten a budget priority for the coming year.
But the party will have to convince Governor Jerry Brown, who’s pushing a message of moderate spending. He will announce his budget on Friday.
The Sacramento City Teachers Association called off a strike planned to start Wednesday after reaching an agreement with the Sacramento City Unified School District on a new contract.
Sacramento State is among three CSU campuses getting a combined total of more than $8 million in federal grants to enhance teacher diversity. The goal is to recruit teachers in Latino, African American and other minority communities.
More California high school students are taking college-level Advanced Placement tests. AP exams are taken each May by high school students who've attended classes that are roughly equivalent to undergraduate college courses.
The California Community College System hopes changing the name of a free tuition program will get more eligible students to take advantage of it.
The Sacramento area unemployment rate increased last month. July's jobless rate was 5.2 percent, up from 4.8 percent in June. Analysts with the state Employment Development Department attribute the increase to seasonal cutbacks at schools.