Connecting the Dots: top news stories for Wednesday, August 31

Federal transit regulators have placed blame squarely on PG&E for last year’s San Bruno pipeline disaster. Recommendations for pipeline repairs and regulatory reform are estimated to be costly – if followed...

Accountability is also on the minds of those measuring school performance, but federal and state systems are drawing conflicting, even contradictory conclusions. State statistics show steady improvement, while federal numbers, based on No Child Left Behind (NCLB) regulations, show a continuing decline...

In light of the difficulties imposed by the combination of deep budget cuts and those controversial NCLB figures, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said he would consider abandoning federal performance mandates if relief from No Child Left Behind sanctions is not otherwise provided by federal officials...

Meanwhile, the Oakland School District put an elementary school on lockdownTuesday, sequestering students in classrooms while police searched the neighborhood for armed suspects. This was the third lockdown within the first two days of school for the district...

In the wake of recent upsurges of crime and violence, Oakland mayor Jean Quan and Police Chief Anthony Batts have announced plans for a city-wide summit on public safety, bringing together community stakeholders and city youth to address crime, education and economic opportunity...

In other East Bay news, a Concord man and his son won a last-minute, 30-day reprieve from deportation to Peru, after Illinois senator Dick Durbin intervened on their behalf. Their case for political asylum was denied recently, after years of appeals...

Immigration and affordable housing activist Eric Quezada died last week after a long battle with cancer. Quezada was the co-founder of Mission Anti-displacement Coalition and a close compatriot to mayoral candidate John Avalos...

Catwalk lights were illuminated at the Bay Bridge yesterday, giving the Bay Area a preview of the new span. The four final pieces of the span's 28-piece deck arrived from Shanghai earlier this week.

Connecting the Dots brings together the day’s news.