News 93.1 KFBK interview with Jill Yoshikawa of Creative Marbles Consultancy

Pondering Progressive Grade Policies

Yesterday, I discussed how changes to academic letter grades may impact students, educators and families with Aubrey Aquino of KFBK News Radio, here in Sacramento, CA. Some school district officials, like those in Sacramento City Unified School District, Oakland Unified School District and Los Angeles Unified School District, will no longer award D’s or F’s to students failing to meet…

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Report Car

Pass/No Pass Grades and College Admissions

In response to the historic health crisis, many school district officials sent millions of students home with little or no planning for the continuity of their education. Thus, as they implemented Emergency Learning, hastily shifting whole schools from brick and mortar buildings to virtual settings, many also changed grading policies, seeking to relieve stress for students and their families.  In…

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It’s Decision Time Already for May 2022 Advanced Placement Exam Registration

A month into the current school year, and The College Board is already calling for students to determine if they’ll take Advanced Placement (AP) tests in May 2022. Thus, high school site based AP Coordinators and teachers are asking students their intentions as well as sending parent emails asking for registration fees. Potential AP exam takers have also recently returned…

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Students Return to a COVID Constrained School

Now back on school campuses, many students grieve the lost 18 months. Freshmen returned as high school juniors, confronting adulthood. Seventh graders returned as high school freshmen, skipping their tweens. College sophomores returned to confront graduating into life.  The “new normal,” for students is wearing masks all day, teachers simultaneously managing social distancing requirements and curriculum, and daily “wellness” checks…

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Required Math Courses Changing at the University of California (UC)

Students applying to the University of California (UC) for Fall 2022 admissions and beyond can now fulfill their third year of required mathematics with a variety of math courses, no longer required to take Integrated Math III, Algebra II or an equivalent. However, potential first year UC applicants should still take a Geometry or Geometry-equivalent course as one of their…

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Comic: I'm more confused than a chameleon in a bag of skittles

BEWARE: Adulting May Not Meet Expectations

For many, we longed to be an “adult” from early childhood, seeking freedom from restrictions imposed “for our own good” by well-intentioned adults (namely our parents and teachers). However, perhaps what we’re seeking is simply agency to determine our own life’s course.  But, two years into college, now on the cusp of assuming responsibility for their lives, but somewhat novice…

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The UC Extends Test-Free Admissions Through Fall 2025

On May 14, 2021, University of California (UC) officials agreed to extend “test-free” admissions policies through Fall 2025, meaning SAT or ACT scores will not be required nor considered in either admissions or scholarship considerations for the next four application cycles. Current Class of 2022 high school juniors through current eighth graders will be affected by the settlement agreement in…

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Bubble cubicle

Kids Return to Campus, But Not to Normalcy

As the number of diagnosed COVID cases plateaus and more Americans are vaccinated, more K-12 administrators are reconvening classes in person, while educators who had already implemented a hybrid schedule during the past few months are now returning to full five day a week, everyone together on campuses. Yet returning to classrooms may be more complicated than expected with modified…

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Reopening Dead Ahead…Maybe

More K-12 school administrators are either preparing or have already reopen(ed) school campuses amidst subsiding COVID related health concerns, declining infections, hospitalizations and deaths.   Of course, variants (viruses evolve) or declining vaccination rates leading to worsening infection, hospitalization and even death rates, would lead to a likely-swift reversal of school reopenings.  Reopen, yes, but not fully business as usual as…

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College Admissions Isn’t a Game

Students and their parents worry, as is often the case in this springtime of year, about who will be admitted and/or rejected at what college, believing that the outcome of a meritocratic, formulaic decision making process that defines winners (those accepted) and losers (those denied) is the final arbiter of who succeeds in life and who doesn’t.   The quest to…

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Comic: dinos and comics

Knowledge seekers never graduate

To learn effectively is to practice humility, to admit how little we know, and recognizing the cost of remaining ignorant is the antidote to pride and the beginning of the journey of discovery, fueled by curiosity which results in the acquisition of knowledge which applied in a continuous collaboration with others who are willing, results in resilience needed to navigate…

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Major Problems

In spring when high school juniors begin devising their lists of colleges in preparation for fall applications, panic can quickly arise, when asked the typical first question, “What do you want to study in college?” which to a teenager translates to: “I must choose a career, right now at seventeenish years old, sign my name in blood and risk sacrificing…

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Biology Master

Biology Master Work at a Discounted Price

E.O. Wilson, a Harvard-trained renowned biologist, and reported Father of Sociobiology, the study of the social behavior of insects and animals which includes humans, has published an entire biology course—an interactive tome—synthesizing much of Professor Wilson’s life’s work, a rethink of the biological idea, free to anyone on iTunes, Biology: Life on Earth. Image of E.O. Wilson from Wikipedia In…

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Zoom School.Joe Visitacion

Virtual Learning at a Cost

In virtual school, where the learning process is digitalized, students are struggling to access assignments, and to demonstrate mastery of the curriculum being presented, therefore, how can it not be that the potential for greater learning is lost?  Students learning virtually must navigate and utilize a sundry of online learning tools, reducing their time to understand concepts. For example, high…

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