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CDE Today for November 19, 2021

A streamlined weekly publication from the California Department of Education (CDE) designed to provide you with clear, consistent updates on what is important to California schools.

CDE Today, State of California Department of Education, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond

Welcome to CDE Today, a new, streamlined, weekly publication from CDE Communications designed to provide you with clear, consistent updates on what is important to California schools.

Note: In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday, this is the final edition of CDE Today that will be published this month.

Updates

Transforming California Schools—Press Conference

State Superintendent Tony Thurmond joined other California Department of Education (CDE) leaders at a press conference this week to announce the integration of programs and strategies to help transform education in California schools, along with student and family supports. Thurmond is seeking to launch a statewide listening tour to seek input on needs and challenges from school leaders, family members, and students on how to best implement these programs to provide the most benefits for everyone involved. At the center of the transformation is a $3 billion community schools strategy and programs to implement universal meals for all students, universal transitional kindergarten for every four-year-old child, universal expanded learning programs, a $10 million grant for anti-racism training, and a $1.5 billion dollar strategy for educator professional development to strengthen teaching and learning. Read more in the CDE news release or watch the entire press conference on the CDE Facebook page External link opens in new window or tab..

State Superintendent Thurmond Serves Meals to Students at Rio Hondo School

On November 9, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond served up healthy school lunches to elementary students and toured the nutrition program at Rio Hondo School in the El Monte City School District in Arcadia. Superintendent Thurmond’s visit is in part to showcase the importance of school nutrition programs and how increased funding has benefitted students, especially in districts with higher needs. In California, a permanent universal school meals program was passed as part of the State Budget and, beginning next school year, all students will have access to two nutritious meals each school day. Since March 2020, the CDE has served more than 800 million meals through curbside pick-up, grab-and-go, bus stop deliveries, and even home delivery.

State Superintendent Thurmond Tours Vaccine Clinic at L.A. Community School

On November 9, State Superintendent Tony Thurmond toured a vaccine clinic at Ambassador School Of Global Leadership at Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools, where over 315 students were vaccinated in Los Angeles. Superintendent Thurmond spoke on the critical role vaccines play in keeping schools open and encouraged the community to get their entire family vaccinated.

Youth Advisory Council Application Extended—Deadline November 22

The CDE launched a Youth Advisory Council (YAC) to advise policymakers and interested parties on educational issues affecting young people. Under the Department’s Equity Branch, the YAC will be representative of a diverse spectrum of young voices from across the state. Among other tasks, the YAC will assess topics and educational resources and take part in policy development to create equitable change with local and state government officials. Districts are encouraged to share with families and invite all students ages fifteen to eighteen to apply for the YAC now through November 22. For information on how to apply, please send an email to YouthAdvisoryCouncil@cde.ca.gov.

School Health, Safety, and Support

Vaccines for Five- to Eleven-Year-Olds Are Here!

Over 329,000 children between five and eleven years old have been vaccinated since the vaccine was authorized on November 2. Over 600 events are being held at schools across California in November and December to protect our students as quickly as possible. Vaccines are a safe and effective way to protect children and end the pandemic. Ahead of the holidays, the Centers for Disease (CDC) recommends all family members get vaccinated. Families can go to the MyTurn website External link opens in new window or tab. to schedule an appointment or find a walk-in clinic.

Schools Can Help Make Holidays Safer with Testing

Make preparations now for a safe return to school after Thanksgiving by planning your pre- and post-Thanksgiving testing now. Here are helpful tips:

  • Finalize testing plans, staffing needs, and testing dates.
  • Notify participants about your testing plan and send out messaging prior to the break. You can use Primary Health's messaging feature to create a custom message to send to your current participants list. See the Primary Health YouTube page for a Custom Communication Feature Tutorial External link opens in new window or tab..
  • Order tests in advance—please allow seven to 10 days for delivery of tests while ensuring that delivery time does not fall within the timeframe that your school is closed. See the California COVID-19 Testing Task Force Order Tests K-12 School Antigen Reorder Form web page External link opens in new window or tab..

For more information and planning resources, visit the California Safe Schools for All Hub External link opens in new window or tab..

CDPH K–12 Schools Guidance Updates

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) K-12 Schools Guidance 2021-2022 Questions & Answers web page External link opens in new window or tab. was updated on November 15, 2021. Question 1a has been added to provide guidance for assessing post-vaccine symptoms in students. FAQs 2 and 6 were updated to reference CDPH's reaffirmation of current masking policies, FAQ 11 was revised to align with CDPH testing guidance, and FAQ 20 was revised for clarity.

New Edition of SHARE is Available

How do local public health departments manage discordant test results? What is San Francisco Department of Public Health’s approach to COVID-19 tests performed at home? Find out the answers to these questions and more in the latest edition of School Health Repository of Experiences (SHARE) External link opens in new window or tab., a space provided by California Safe Schools for All External link opens in new window or tab. to host content generated by and for California’s local health and school leaders. Not all information may apply to your situation; see disclaimer for more. View the latest issue of SHARE External link opens in new window or tab., and make your contribution to future editions of SHARE External link opens in new window or tab..

Questions about Ventilation-Related Capital Expenditures?

Visit the CDE Capital Expenditures FAQs web page for answers to Frequently Asked Questions about federal stimulus funding capital expenditures, including the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) I, II, and III Funds and the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) I and II Funds. Specific questions can also be sent to EDReliefFunds@cde.ca.gov. Resources are also available through the California Schools Healthy Air, Plumbing, and Efficiency Program (CalSHAPE) web page External link opens in new window or tab. from the California Energy Commission.

Interactive Tool to Support Isolation and Quarantine Decision-Making

The CDPH has created a new Decision-Making Interactive Tool External link opens in new window or tab. based on guidance for managing confirmed or suspected COVID-19 among students in K–12 settings. The resource is also available in Spanish by clicking on the top-right of the tool.

Angst: Building Resilience Statewide Initiative—Available to Schools for Free

Last month, State Superintendent Thurmond announced Angst: Building Resilience, a film-based youth mental health support program now available in Spanish and English to all California public and charter middle and high schools through June 30, 2022. Please see the CDE news release on the program. The 75-minute program includes a 43-minute film that highlights the prevalence of anxiety among our children and youth, discussion guides, classroom activities, and homework assignments to foster discussion with parents/caregivers. If you are interested in showing the film in your school or district, there are office hours available every Wednesday from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. to connect with the executive producer to discuss best practices for implementation. Join the Wednesday Zoom Call External link opens in new window or tab.. Please contact Monica Nepomuceno, Education Programs Consultant in the CDE School Health and Safety Office, at mnepomuceno@cde.ca.gov for any questions or visit the Indieflix website External link opens in new window or tab..

Program Highlights

Biliteracy Pathway Recognition Program: Participation Form Now Live

The form to participate in the Biliteracy Pathway Recognitions Program is now live on the CDE Biliteracy Pathway Recognitions web page under the “Requirements and Forms” tab. Local educational agencies (LEAs) interested in participating in this optional program must submit a form annually. The form can be submitted from now through July 31, 2022, for participation in the 2021–22 school year. Once you submit the form, you will receive an email with a link to access the optional certificate templates. For more information about this program, including a program overview, the criteria for the three recognitions, FAQs, and resources, visit the CDE Biliteracy Pathway Recognitions web page. If you have questions about this program, contact Gina Garcia-Smith by phone at 916-319-0265 or by email at SEAL@cde.ca.gov.

Special Education: New Podcast! “How to Feel Connected at School (With New Equity D&D Team Member Dr. Erin Mahoney)”

The Equity, Disproportionality, and Design (ED&D) podcast, a project of the South County Special Education Local Plan Area, provides access to engaging conversations with educators and community members who share their personal and professional experiences and their efforts to build equity in our schools, and barriers they’ve overcome to make positive change. Access this latest episode at the Spotify ED&D Podcast web page External link opens in new window or tab. or the Apple Podcasts web page External link opens in new window or tab.. For more information on this resource, contact Adrianne Bautista, Program Clerk, at Adrianne.Bautista@sdcoe.net.

Special Education: Inclusive Literacy by Design—Barriers

Our California Coalition for Inclusive Literacy partners at the Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST) and California Collaborative for Educational Excellence (CCEE) have provided resources to support educators with tools and strategies to ensure access to all students. The theme for the month of November is “Barriers,” and in order to access these thematically related resources as well as those from prior months, visit the Inclusive Literacy by Design newsletter web page External link opens in new window or tab.. For more information on this resource, contact Michelle Bello, Education Programs Consultant, Special Education Division, at MBello@cde.ca.gov.

English Learner (EL) Master Plan: Designing Local Policy Aligned to the California EL Roadmap

This interactive Institute is being offered as part of the CDE Educator Workforce Investment Grant through grantee English Learner Roadmap Implementation for Systemic Excellence! (EL RISE!) and their partner from the Center for Equity for English Learners (CEEL). This Institute will help LEA teams create a plan to develop a districtwide EL Master Plan aligned to the research-based California EL Roadmap Policy. Participants will receive resources included in the CEEL’s English Learner Master Plan Playbook to develop a strategy for beginning or refining their approach to writing their EL Master Plan. Alignment with EL Roadmap principles and elements will be highlighted.

Please see the registration links below for the EL Master Plan Institute hosted by your local County Office of Education.

All sessions will be held from 9 a.m. to noon. Participants should plan to attend both sessions. If you have questions about these institutes, please see the contact information for the hosting County Office of Education on the links above.

Events and Opportunities

Grant Opportunities

Educator Workforce Investment Grant: Computer Science—Due December 17

Lead applicants must be an institution of higher education or a nonprofit organization with demonstrated expertise in developing and providing professional learning to teachers and paraprofessionals in public schools serving kindergarten and grades one to twelve, inclusive. Completed applications are due Friday, December 17, 2021, by 4 p.m. More information is available on the CDE EWIG Program web page.

Scaling Up Multi-tiered System of Support Statewide: Partner Entity—Due December 17

The CDE is seeking to select a local educational agency, an LEA in partnership with an institution of higher education or nonprofit educational service provider, or a consortia to partner with the Orange County Department of Education and the Butte County Office of Education to expand the state’s capacity to support LEAs’ implementation of social and emotional learning; trauma-informed practices; and culturally relevant, affirming, and sustaining practices. Completed applications are due Friday, December 17, 2021, by 4 p.m. More information is available on the CDE SUMS: Partner Entity Program web page.

Conferences

UC Davis 11th Annual Conference on Integrated Computing and STEM Education—November 29–December 2, 3 to 5 p.m.

This virtual conference will be organized by the UC Davis C-STEM Center and its partners online. The conference provides a forum for policy makers, researchers, district and school administrators, K–12 STEM teachers, and industrial partners to share their vision, research results, best practices, and experience on transforming math education with hands-on coding and robotics, especially on closing the math opportunity gap for at-risk students and English language learners. The theme of this year’s conference is “Accelerated Learning of Math and CS/STEAM.”

Learn more on the UC Davis C-STEM Center 2021 Conference web page External link opens in new window or tab.. Free registration is available on the UC Davis C-STEM Center Conference Registration web page External link opens in new window or tab..

Webinars/Trainings

Webinar Series: Resilient Practices for Educators, Staff Members, Administrators and Teams—November 18

Social-emotional health matters as we continue to maneuver through challenging times. Practices in building resilience can improve overall job satisfaction and ensure we take care of our own health as we work with other adults and serve youth throughout California. This monthly webinar series—hosted in partnership with The Alliance for a Healthier Generation, Project Cal-Well, and Kaiser Permanente’s Thriving Schools initiative, will include seven webinars focused on staff wellness to ensure educators and school staff feel validated and supported. The series kicks off on Thursday, November 18, at 3 p.m. Read more and register for the Resilient Practices for Educators, Staff Members, Administrators, and Teams webinar series via the Zoom registration page External link opens in new window or tab..

Designing Inclusive Preschools: Discover. Data. Design. Deliver.

Author and educator Andratesha Fritzgerald, Ed.S., will present virtually on the opportunity to learn how to create and implement inclusive preschool programs through the lens of equity and universal design for learning (UDL). Each interactive session will walk participants through a journey of reflection that addresses systemic and structural inequalities in the intentional design of equitable early childhood programs.

  • Session #1: December 7, 2021, 3–4 PST
  • Session #2: December 9, 2021, 3–4 PST
  • Session #3: December 14, 2021, 3–4 PST
  • Session #4: December 16, 2021, 3–4 PST

Register for this event at Supporting Inclusive Practices Designing Inclusive Preschools: Discover. Data. Design. Deliver External link opens in new window or tab.. If you have any questions, please contact Program Assistant Jessica Bari at JBari@edcoe.org.  

Mind Out Loud Informational Webinar—December 9

The Mind Out Loud (MOL) Informational Webinar will be offered on December 9, 2021, from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Join us to learn about the FREE virtual student event that was started last year in response to the increasing mental health needs among middle and high school students. MOL promotes student mental health, aims to eliminate stigma by connecting with peers and creating a unified voice, promotes engaging and well-known speakers with lived experience, and provides resources and practical tools for wellness in a safe and inclusive environment. The second annual event, co-hosted by CDE, Wellness Together, and the San Diego County Office of Education, will be held on Saturday, March 12, 2022, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Register via Zoom online for the MOL webinar External link opens in new window or tab.. Please contact Monica Nepomuceno, Education Programs Consultant in the CDE School Health and Safety Office, at mnepomuceno@cde.ca.gov with questions.

Structuring District and School Site Support for Newcomer Students

This institute, designed for site and district administrators and English learner Directors/Coordinators, provides an overview of who these newcomers are and their needs and effective school and district responses. Learn about newcomer program models, supporting effective instruction, approaches to assessment and placement, and creating safe havens. Tools and resources will be provided for inquiries, planning, and strengthening services.

Register below for the institute hosted by your local County Office of Education. Participants should plan to attend both sessions. If you have questions about these institutes, please see the contact information for the hosting County Office of Education in the links below.

  • San Diego County External link opens in new window or tab., December 7, 2021, and January 13, 2022, 9 to 11 a.m.
    Contact: Elizabeth Campos, ecampos@sdcoe.net, 858-295-8992.
  • Butte and San Joaquin counties, March 1 and 24, 2022, 9 to 11 a.m.
  • Orange County External link opens in new window or tab., March 17 and 24, 2022, 3:15 to 5:15 p.m.

Contact: Carey Arias, carias@ocde.us, 714-966-4445.

LivingWorks Start Online Suicide Prevention Training

According to the CDC’s 2019 Vital Signs report, suicide deaths have been rising in nearly every state. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for youth ages ten to twenty-four. For every youth who dies by suicide, an estimated 100–200 youth make suicide attempts. Research shows that suicide is preventable, and California is taking action. You can help by learning the signs of suicidal ideation and knowing what to do by taking the LivingWorks Start Training External link opens in new window or tab.. The 90-minute, interactive training is FREE to middle (ages thirteen and up) and high school staff and students in California and is funded by Assembly Bill 1808. Please contact Monica Nepomuceno, Education Programs Consultant in the CDE School Health and Safety Office, at mnepomuceno@cde.ca.gov with questions.

Celebrations

Go Cubs! State Special School Football Team Makes the Finals

The CDE continues to root for the incredible success of our State Special School, the California School for the Deaf, Riverside (CSDR), football team. The team has made the national news External link opens in new window or tab.. CSDR’s team is undefeated and has won their last 11 games, securing a position in the playoffs. This is the first winning record in a decade for CSDR’s football program, which has never won a championship or gone past the second round of the section playoffs. Good luck to the Cubs, who play again tonight!

Dr. Daniel Lee Discusses Partnership to Bring Mental Health Support Film to Schools on ABC Sacramento

Deputy Superintendent of Equity Dr. Daniel Lee was recently featured in an article by ABC Sacramento discussing the importance of Angst: Building Resilience, a film-based youth mental health support program available through the California Department of Health Care Services’ CalHope program, Blue Shield's Blue Sky Initiative, IndieFlix, and the CDE. Available to districts that serve middle and high school students, the film helps address the increasing mental health challenges faced by students.

Watch the interview on the ABC 10 Morning Blend web page External link opens in new window or tab..

Important Dates and Deadlines

November is National Family Literacy Month

November is National Family Literacy Month, a celebration raising awareness and fostering family literacy by encouraging parents and guardians to read to their children. Reading to children at an early age can boost a child’s language development, enhances comprehension, and fosters the joy of reading. When students don’t learn to read by third grade, they are at greater risk to drop out of school, and they are at greater risk to end up in the criminal justice system.

State Superintendent Thurmond continues to call for efforts to get books in the hands of as many students and families as possible and encourages those interested in participating in this new literacy effort or who wish to learn more to email statewideliteracycampaign@cde.ca.gov.

November is California Sikh American Awareness and Appreciation Month

The California legislature has once again designated November 2021 as Sikh American Awareness and Appreciation Month, honoring the contributions Sikh pioneers have made in California, including farming, technology, transportation, entrepreneurship, social issues, and more. The month provides an opportunity for all Californians to understand, recognize, and appreciate the rich history and shared principles of democracy, equality, and service to humanity by Sikh Americans.

November is National Native American Heritage Month

November is Native American Heritage Month, a time to honor the rich and diverse cultures, histories, and traditions of Native tribes and acknowledge the unique challenges as well as the important contributions of Native people.

Thanksgiving Day

The CDE will be closed Thursday, November 25, and Friday, November 26, in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday.

National Special Education Day (December 2, 2021)

Computer Science Education Week (December 6 through December 12)

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CDE committed to improving communications with more than 1,000 school districts and county offices and 10,000-plus school districts. If you have any feedback about this publication or would like to see information on particular topics, please email communications@cde.ca.gov.

Questions:   Communications | communications@cde.ca.gov | 916-319-0818
Last Reviewed: Friday, November 19, 2021
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