Lack of DOE Funds Won't Stop Calif. Districts

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Taking matters into their own hands, a group of school districts is pushing for "ground-up" reform without the benefit of funds from the Department of Education's Race to the Top. San Francisco Unified School District is one of seven California districts to try reform tactics with a $3 million donation from philanthropic organizations, according to an Associated Press article in the San Jose Mercury News.

California Office of Education Reform [CORE] will pursue reforms such as accountability and review procedures for teachers, common standards for English and math instruction, more effectively sharing of data, and working collaboratively to turn around struggling schools.

The president of the new group is Michael E. Hanson, superintendent of the Fresno Unified School District which is one of two school districts to embrace California's Digital Textbook Initiative.

"CORE's purpose is bottom-up education reform that is nimble enough to pursue funding and reforms outside the politics of education," he said in a statement.

Los Angeles, Long Beach, Fresno, Sanger, Clovis and Sacramento are also included in the group.