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Some California Schools Make Breakfast the First Lesson of the Day

September 2, 2014

Some California Schools Make Breakfast the First Lesson of the Day

By Linda Childers

When Ross McGowan and his team of volunteers enter one of the classrooms at Healdsburg Elementary School, the students cheer excitedly. Their enthusiastic response isn’t because they remember McGowan from his thirty-plus years in Bay Area television, but rather because he comes bearing food.

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Childhood Poverty Affects Longterm Health

August 27, 2014

Childhood Poverty Affects Longterm Health

 

By Mary Flynn

About twenty young children sat on the brightly colored carpet as a man with long dreadlocks slid a large conga drum in front of him. It was “circle time” at Lotus Bloom’s Room to Bloom program, a drop-in parent-child playgroup in East Oakland.

The drummer called out to the kids to stand up, take one step right, one step left.

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East Oakland childcare program cares for children and parents

August 11, 2014

By Mary Flynn

Experts say that the first five years of a child’s life will greatly impact their educational, social and economic futures.
However, California’s children of color – particularly African American and Latino children – suffer significant gaps when it comes to those early opportunities such as access to preschool.

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State Restores Some Funding for Kids with Special Needs

July 8, 2014

State Restores Some Funding for Kids with Special Needs

By Lisa Renner

Born five weeks premature, 2-year-old Corbin can’t speak as well as other children his age. But the Modesto toddler is improving all the time because of an infant development specialist provided by California’s Early Start program.

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Charter Schools May Affect Quality of Education for Disabled Students

June 18, 2014

Charter Schools May Affect Quality of Education for Disabled Students

By Robin Urevich

Charter schools — public schools run by parents, teachers and others largely free of state and local regulations — were designed to provide competition for traditional public schools, forcing them to improve, or lose students.

But the schools’ detractors argue that charters sometimes look better on paper than they are in reality.

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Safe Surrender Program Committed to Saving California’s Youngest Residents

June 3, 2014

Safe Surrender Program Committed to Saving California’s Youngest Residents

By Linda Childers

Debi Faris still remembers the incredible sadness she felt after hearing a news report about a dead baby boy who was found in a duffel bag on the side of the Harbor Freeway in San Pedro. It was the spring of 1996, and the Yucaipa mother of three was haunted by the story of the infant who had been tossed from a speeding car.

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School Success Means Catching Vision Problems Early

May 12, 2014

School Success Means Catching Vision Problems Early

By Mary Flynn

Leon Rodriguez, a 3-year-old Latino boy, sat patiently in a small chair in the darkened room.  Under a massive crop of fluffy, curly hair, he trained large dark eyes on the young man holding a small camera three feet in front of him.

Leon was one of approximately 40 preschoolers gathered at the Vargas Child Development Center in Sunnyvale.

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A Class Robot Helps Kids with Autism

April 25, 2014

A Class Robot Helps Kids with Autism

By Pamela K. Johnson

An 8-year-old boy with autism ran up to a booth where a small robot named Nao sat on a display table at a technology conference a few years ago. Nao was “looking” around. When the child touched the robot’s shiny white and blue body, its sensors engaged, and it turned its head and began to ask the boy questions in a pleasant, computerized voice.

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Transitional Kindergarten Aims for a Lifelong Boost

April 23, 2014

Transitional Kindergarten Aims for a Lifelong Boost

By Lisa Renner

State Senate Democrats are pushing for the expansion of transitional kindergarten for all 4-year-olds in hopes that it will reduce costs in special education and incarcerations down the road.

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Nurses Becoming a Rarity in California Public Schools

April 11, 2014

Nurses Becoming a Rarity in California Public Schools

By Natalie Jones

Each school day, about a fifth of the children in California schools attend class without a nurse in the building.If emergency medication needs to be administered — an epinephrine shot for allergies, for example, or other kinds of medication injections — there may or may not be someone qualified or trained to provide the treatment.

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