Elementary school students in a California classroom. ((Photo: Monkey Business Images)
All kids deserve an equal chance to succeed. Unfortunately, many achieving African-American and Latino students in California schools are being unfairly denied advancement to the mathematics courses critical to their educational and career success. Despite earning the grades and assessment test scores that show promise of their ability to benefit from instruction in higher math, too many are not getting into the classes they need and can handle.
Islands in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, an aerial view. The Delta is home to about half of California's drinking water. (Photo: Worldislandinfo.com
As part of the newly formed Californians for Water Security, we support moving forward with Governor Jerry Brown’s Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP), a bold strategy to ensure our state is making the most of our limited water supplies. That’s why we are disappointed to see certain groups opposing the plan to build a modern water pipeline to fix California’s aging statewide water distribution infrastructure.
As more people enter the healthcare system and as baby boomers enter senior status there is increased demand for services, especially surgeries and outpatient procedures requiring anesthesia. Administering anesthesia has become even riskier and more difficult as patients with multiple medical problems have been able to live longer.
In 2015, California’s push to expand health care coverage continues at a rapid pace. Consider this statistic: 12 million of our residents are enrolled in Medi-Cal – nearly one in three Californians. This greater demand is creating new challenges for California’s hospitals, both inside and outside of their walls.
Dear Big Daddy,
Why don’t more legislators become governors? They are all ambitious politicians, aren’t they?
–Curious in Cucamonga
An oil derrick at work in Kern County, 2013. (Photo: Christopher Halloran)
OPINION: Faced with the decision of whether or not hydraulic fracturing (fracking) should be approved in New York, the state’s Commissioner of Health Dr. Howard Zucker publicly asked, “Would I let my family live in a community with fracking? The answer is no. I therefore cannot recommend anyone else’s family to live in such a community either.” In California, some 5.4 million people (14 percent of the state’s population) live within a mile of at least one of the state’s total of 84,000 oil and gas wells, according to the NRDC.
Blocks and crayons in a California classroom.(Photo illustration: Blade Tucker
OPINION: Late last year, the Legislature passed a fiscally irresponsible law that prevents local school districts from maintaining prudent budget reserves necessary to prepare for future economic downturns, to invest in classroom improvements, and to protect our students. As ridiculous as that sounds, unfortunately that’s the reality. That’s why thousands of educators, including school board members, school district officials, community members, parents and others are calling for the Legislature to repeal the local school district reserve cap.
Students at a graduation ceremony at Santa Monica City College. (Photo: American Spirit, via Shutterstock)
California’s universities receive more and more applications every year. Last year there were a record 193,873 applicants to the University of California and 290,473 to the California State University system. Each applicant applied, on average, to two or three campuses. But just as this demand is growing, more and more eligible students are being turned away from California’s universities.
A youngster on his visit to the dentist. (Photo: Wavebreakmedia, via Shutterstock)
It is not often that dental professionals, health care providers, advocates, and legislators from both sides of the aisle all agree on an issue, but that is precisely what happened at a hearing this week on the state’s dental program for low-income children. Testimony and discussion honed in on the sobering results of a December 2014 state audit, which found that millions of children enrolled in Medi-Cal (California’s Medicaid program) were not getting the dental care they need.
An electrical engineer at a solar power plant in California. (Photo: BikerideLondon, via Shutterstock)
OPINION: A package of bills has been proposed that would require the state to generate half of its electricity from renewables such as solar and wind, cut petroleum use by 50% and double the energy efficiency of existing buildings, all by 2030. The measures have drawn the predictable support of environmental groups concerned about climate change. They deserve the strong – and enthusiastic – backing of business, too.