California unveiled a blueprint for the future of early education. Critics say it’s built on shaky ground

After months of delays and pandemic upheaval, California officials on Tuesday released the long-awaited Master Plan for Early Learning and Care, a 113-page blueprint to remodel the state’s Byzantine child-care system and dramatically expand public preschool.



a little girl sitting at a table: Consuelo Garcia sanitizes toys at the Children of the Rainbow child-care center in San Diego. (John Gibbins / San Diego Union-Tribune)


© Provided by The LA Times
Consuelo Garcia sanitizes toys at the Children of the Rainbow child-care center in San Diego. (John Gibbins / San Diego Union-Tribune)

“The Master Plan shows how one state can achieve goals that are soon to become national ones,” the authors noted. “California can use the Master Plan to signal its fitness as an early partner with the incoming Biden administration,” which advocates early-education reform and better access to child care.

But critics say the forward-looking document does little to shore up the existing infrastructure, even as it crumbles underfoot. Unlike K-12 schools, preschools and day-care centers have been allowed to operate throughout the pandemic. Yet since March, almost 400 child-care centers have closed permanently, and at least 5,700 licensed family child-care homes have gone under, leaving tens of thousands of working parents in the lurch.

“We’re sounding the alarm, because the system is on the verge of collapse,” said Max Arias, chairman of the Child Care Providers Union, which represents thousands of workers. “Who knows how the sector will look when it’s time to start implementing this plan? We need to address this crisis, because if not, there won’t be any child-care providers left.”

Indeed, the pandemic has further destabilized an industry that was already in decline when Gov. Gavin Newsom campaigned on early-education reform in 2018, and when experts began work on the plan last fall. Echoing the Master Plan for Higher Education, the Master Plan for Early Learning and Care was envisioned as a 10-year guidebook for new legislation, investment and reform. Its main goals include uniform standards for early education, better training for child-care workers, easier access to subsidized care for low-income families and universal transitional kindergarten for all California 4-year-olds.

“The goals they lay out are great, but where’s the roadmap for actually getting this done?” asked Ted Lempert, a former state assemblyman who is president of the research and advocacy organization Children Now. “COVID has made this system so fragile and so essential. Now we’re in code red.”

The plan itself acknowledged the crisis, including its impact on working families.

“The COVID-19 crisis has put increased pressure on an already fragile provider ecosystem,” the report said. “Stabilizing and supporting the workforce is critical to the state’s response and recovery process.”

Yet the authors offered few details on how California would help preschools and day-care centers stay open while it sorts out funding for its more ambitious goals. Instead, its most immediate action would be to untangle some of the bureaucracy governing early-childhood care by shifting oversight for virtually all state-subsidized programs from the state’s Department of Education to the Department of Social Services. The plan suggests then streamlining publicly funded programs, simplifying eligibility for low-income families and overhauling reimbursements for providers, which the

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Watch Now: OSU vs. Texas Tech notebook: Dezmon Jackson has career day; Boone Pickens statue unveiled | OSU Sports Extra

“He changed how we felt about our university,” athletic director Mike Holder said during the ceremony. “He changed giving to an unprecedented level. In essence, he changed our university forever. And for those reasons he was and he will always be the greatest Cowboy of them all.”

The statue is located on the west side of Boone Pickens Stadium and it was announced Saturday that a Barry Sanders statue is also expected to arrive on campus soon.

First kickoff return TD in six years

Oklahoma State had 12 kickoffs returned for a touchdown in Gundy’s first eight seasons, from 2005-2013. But the Cowboys hadn’t returned a kick for a score since Tyreek Hill in 2014. Jason Taylor ended the drought with a 48-yard kickoff return on an onside kick attempt in the third quarter.

Safety Tre Sterling returned an interception for 65 yards to give OSU two non-offensive touchdowns. It was the first time OSU has had two non-offensive TDs since Madre Harper and Ramon Richards returned fumbles against Southeastern Louisiana in 2016.

Wallace with another 100-yard game

Tylan Wallace continues to show why he is considered one of the best wide receivers in the country. He finished with seven catches for 129 yards and a touchdown. It was Wallace’s 14th career 100-yard receiving game, which is the fifth-most in OSU history.

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OSU vs. Texas Tech notebook: Dezmon Jackson has career day; Boone Pickens statue unveiled | OSU Sports Extra

His $165 million donation to OSU in 2005 was the largest single donation to an athletics program in NCAA history. Pickens was honored a couple of hours before the game with the unveiling of his statue, sculpted out of bronze.

“He changed how we felt about our university,” athletic director Mike Holder said during the ceremony. “He changed giving to an unprecedented level. In essence, he changed our university forever. And for those reasons he was and he will always be the greatest Cowboy of them all.”

The statue is located on the west side of Boone Pickens Stadium and it was announced Saturday that a Barry Sanders statue is also expected to arrive on campus soon.

First kickoff return TD in six years

Oklahoma State had 12 kickoffs returned for a touchdown in Gundy’s first eight seasons, from 2005-2013. But the Cowboys hadn’t returned a kick for a score since Tyreek Hill in 2014. Jason Taylor ended the drought with a 48-yard kickoff return on an onside kick attempt in the third quarter.

Safety Tre Sterling returned an interception for 65 yards to give OSU two non-offensive touchdowns. It was the first time OSU has had two non-offensive TDs since Madre Harper and Ramon Richards returned fumbles against Southeastern Louisiana in 2016.

Wallace with another 100-yard game

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A mobile flood tool for the nation unveiled

USGS unveils mobile flood tool for the nation
In addition to current conditions provided by USGS observation stations, the NWD allows you to connect with valuable forecast information from the National Weather Service. The red shaded areas display current hurricane watches, while the orange areas are warnings. Find and click on a blue circle. Doing so will provide the latest information about a streamgage site that is above normal flow status. If flooding is above NWS flood stage, the circle will have a magenta halo around it (no sites are experiencing NWS flood stage on the shown map). Credit: USGS

The U.S. Geological Survey announced Friday the completion of a new mobile tool that provides real-time information on water levels, weather and flood forecasts all in one place on a computer, smartphone or other mobile device.


The new USGS National Water Dashboard, or NWD, provides critical information to decision-makers, emergency managers and the public during flood events, informing decisions that can help protect lives and property.

“The National Water Dashboard is a much-needed advancement that will help keep communities across the country safe during extreme weather conditions,” said Tim Petty, Ph.D., Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary for Water and Science, from an agricultural round table with the Water Subcabinet in Janesville, Wisconsin. “The development of a comprehensive tool that can provide real-time, critical information on mobile devices is great news for areas in our country that are prone to flooding or drought. In addition to giving the public key information on what’s happening in their communities, it will also help improve the response of federal, state and local agencies during storms, floods and drought conditions.”

“Our vision is the National Water Dashboard will be a one-stop resource for all available USGS water data used by the public to make decisions that can preserve life and property,” said Jim Reilly, Ph.D., director of the USGS. “The USGS will continue to build out this tool incorporating future advances in water information so the public will have the latest and best information on hazards and resources.”

USGS unveils mobile flood tool for the nation
Hurricane Zeta’s landfall on the Gulf coast. Flow conditions can be explored by clicking on the option in the Layers menu, along with other dataset choices such as weather radar and GOES satellite data. Blue circles show where streamgage water levels are rising, while orange/red dots show sites where levels are receding. Clicking on the legend button will bring up information about the symbols used in the map. Credit: USGS

Information from the NWD will help inform forecasting, response and recovery efforts for agencies such as the National Weather Service, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and other federal, state and local agencies. The tool can be used by forecasters and local emergency managers as they issue flood- and evacuation warnings, verify safe evacuation routes and coordinate emergency response efforts. The NWD can assist the USACE as they manage water supplies in river basins and operate flood-control reservoirs. During a drought, the tool can help state resource managers identify

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AP College Football Poll 2020: Week 8 Rankings Unveiled for Top 25 Teams | Bleacher Report

FILE - In this Jan. 13, 2020, file photo, Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence passes against LSU during the second half of a NCAA College Football Playoff national championship game, in New Orleans. Lawrence is on a streak of 314 pass attempts without an interception, a run dating back to last Oct. 19 when he was picked off twice at Louisville in Clemson's 45-10 victory. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

Gerald Herbert/Associated Press

Losses for two Top Five teams led to significant movement in the latest Associated Press poll. 

Alabama outlasted Georgia in a battle of Top Three teams, while North Carolina suffered its first loss of the season at the hands of Florida State. Clemson was the only top team that didn’t have a scare with a blowout victory over Georgia Tech.

Voters were left with significant question marks beyond the top two, especially with the Big Ten and Pac-12 still yet to begin their seasons.

Here is a look at the Top 25 going into Week 8.

      

AP Poll

1. Clemson

2. Alabama

3. Notre Dame

4. Georgia

5. Ohio State

6. Oklahoma State

7. Texas A&M

8. Penn State

9. Cincinnati

10. Florida

11. Miami (Florida)

12. BYU

13. Oregon

14. North Carolina

15. Wisconsin

16. SMU

17. Iowa State

18. Michigan

19. Virginia Tech

20. Kansas State

21. Minnesota

22. Marshall

23. North Carolina State

24. USC

25. Coastal Carolina

       

Perhaps the most anticipated game on the 2020 schedule took place Saturday as Alabama hosted Georgia. Although some thought this could be the year for the Bulldogs to come away with a win, it was the Crimson Tide who ended up with the 41-24 victory.

Alabama’s defense had been inconsistent this year, but the offense proved it was elite with 564 yards from scrimmage. The passing game was especially impressive with top receivers Devonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle having big games:

After Georgia built a 24-17 lead, Alabama closed with 24 unanswered points, including a 21-0 mark in the second half. Stetson Bennett especially struggled late with three interceptions as Georgia dropped from No. 3 in the rankings to No. 4.

Alabama stays at No. 2 but has already passed what could be its toughest test of the regular season.

Clemson remains No. 1 overall after a 73-7 win over Georgia Tech, led by five passing touchdowns from Trevor Lawrence.

“It’s the highest level of football I’ve seen out of him, but it’s what I think he expects and what everybody in our building expects out of him,” Tigers offensive coordinator Tony Elliott said of the quarterback, per Andrea Adelson of ESPN.

North Carolina had also looked like an elite team through the first few weeks, although that came to an end Saturday after Florida State handed the ACC rival a 31-28 loss.

Sam Howell had 374 passing yards and three touchdowns for the Tar Heels, but they couldn’t stop the Seminoles rushing attack with 241 yards and two touchdowns as a team. North Carolina dropped to No. 14 in the latest rankings.

Notre Dame avoided upset, though the 12-7 win over Louisville certainly wasn’t pretty. The No. 3 Fighting Irish will have to be more efficient going forward in order to stay high

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