The Public Policy Advocacy Clinic in 2004 worked on several issues. One of them was the "School Accountability Report Card" that both state and federal law require school districts to provide for each school, so that both parents and the public can be informed about issues of school quality. Our work focused on whether these "report cards" on schools were understandable by their target audience. Using a sophisticated and creative combination of techniques, from computerized readability assessments to focus groups to experiments with members of two business clubs, one of our teams produced a report that drew attention statewide, and has led to renewed efforts to streamline and make understandable to parents and taxpayers this critical information.
SARC: A Summary (2003-04)
SARC Report Card (2003-04)
In 2000, Public Policy Advocacy Clinic students undertook the challenging task of (a) researching the possible state constitutional claims students in substandard schools might have and (b) documenting through extensive research, surveys, and investigation the abysmal conditions of California public schools, particularly those serving low income children and children of color. Our report was released the same day as a massive statewide class action was filed and our work helped provide the foundation for that case, Williams v. California. Information on the case and the reforms resulting from its settlement are available at
Who Is Accountable To Our School Children? (2000)
In 1997, the Public Policy Advocacy Clinic served as the research and investigative staff to a Citizens' Blue Ribbon Committee on Slum Housing. The report based on our work resulted in front page coverage in the
Los Angeles Times, the appointment of a special City Council Committee on Slum Housing to review our recommendations (14 of 15 of which were enacted), the creation of an entirely new systematic code enforcement program aimed at preventing slum housing conditions.
Slum Housing Report (1997)