California parents, educators, convene for PTA convention in Sacramento

Thousands of educators and parents from around California began gathering Thursday at the Sacramento Convention Center to hear the latest on education, health and community issues at the annual California State PTA Convention.

The 116th annual event, which runs through Sunday, includes appearances by California Supreme Court Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye addressing the importance of civics education and engagement, and Mae Jemison, educator, physician, engineer and the first African American woman astronaut offering personal insights on STEM education – science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Thursday’s sessions included the EdSource Symposium, which provided panelists and presenters on national and local education issues, California education funding, Common Core and high-needs students.

Pedro Noguera, an education researcher, scholar, author and the Peter L. Agnew Professor of Education at New York University, told hundreds of members at the opening session that districts need to engage students of all diversities and income levels.

“When you go to a school that is deliberately assigning the weakest experienced teachers to the neediest kids, you can be sure that school won’t improve,” he said. He lauded veteran teachers who have taken the lead in teaching needy students as well as high achievers.

Call The Bee’s Loretta Kalb, (916) 321-1073. Follow her on Twitter @LorettaSacBee.