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Roundtable: Back To School 2019

A parked school bus in San Diego, Nov. 1, 2018.

Photo by KPBS Staff

Above: A parked school bus in San Diego, Nov. 1, 2018.

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This week's episode focuses on education as San Diego Unified School District begins a new academic year, the Sweetwater Union High School District grapples with a major budget shortfall, and local students sound off on whether they feel safe on campus.

Aired: August 30, 2019 | Transcript

Roundtable Guests:

John Carroll, reporter, KPBS News

Adriana Heldiz, multimedia producer, Voice of San Diego

Will Huntsberry, reporter, Voice of San Diego

Kristen Taketa, reporter, San Diego Union-Tribune

San Diego Unified begins a new school year

More than 100,000 students returned to class in the San Diego Unified School District this week. The district is calling attention to its focus on student health by highlighting improvements to food menus and the phase-in of later start times. By next year, all schools will start no earlier than 8:30 am. The district is also focusing on improved access to advanced math courses for underrepresented groups.

RELATED: California Poised To Overhaul Charter Schools

Budget cuts for Sweetwater schools

Parents raised their voices this week at the Sweetwater Union High School District’s board meeting. They are concerned about a budget shortfall that is jeopardizing bus service. In some cases, students must walk several miles to reach campus. The district includes schools in San Ysidro, Chula Vista, Imperial Beach, Bonita and National City.

RELATED: Sweetwater Budget Woes To Cut Into Already Ailing Adult Education Programs

San Diego students weigh in on campus safety

The state of California has released its latest annual survey on student safety. Voice of San Diego analyzed the results to find where students feel the most and least safe. At dozens of local schools, including a few elementary schools, the number of students who report feeling safe is below 50%. Physical violence and bullying are among the factors.

RELATED: What Three New San Diego Schools Tell Us About Safety And Design

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