Today’s News: Healthier school meals; Gun control comes to LA; Changing face of Calif.

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Healthy meals. When you add it all up, school districts in L.A., New York, Chicago, Miami, Orlando and Dallas serve 2.5 million meals each day. And they collectively spend more than $500 million a year on food. The offerings traditionally haven’t been all that healthy. But that could be about to change. LAUSD and the other districts will announce a plan today to use their collective clout to make wholesome food a national standard. The districts say they’ll leverage their combined purchasing power to buy healthier fare at lower prices. They also plan to go green: replacing polystyrene and plastic with biodegradable trays and utensils. L.A. Times

Gun debate. L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa wants the city to cut its financial ties to gun makers. He’s calling on the city’s three pension fund managers to divest from companies that make firearms, ammunition or high-capacity ammunition magazines. Villaraigosa’s announcement came just hours after President Obama unveiled his priorities for gun control legislation Wednesday. City Councilwoman Jan Perry first proposed the divestment measure. The mayor says it could take weeks to probe the city’s investments to find out how much has been invested in firearms manufacturers. KCBS

Destroyed habitat
. State environmental regulators say the Army Corps of Engineers failed to obtain proper permits before it flattened 43 acres of wildlife habitat in the Sepulveda Basin last month. The Corps insists it cleared the area to discourage crime, but the move drew loud protests from environmental groups. They say the Corps misrepresented its plans and decimated an area that was home to bobcats, white pelicans and other wildlife. Federal officials were already looking into possible violations of endangered species protections. And now the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Board is chiming in. The state agency says the brush clearance could foul the L.A. River with sediment. L.A. Times

Online education. University of California President Mark Yudof says he’ll heed Governor Jerry Brown’s call for more online courses. Yudof says the university system is working to overcome technical problems that have prevented students from taking online courses. But he predicted U.C. students will be taking at least 10 percent of their classes over the Internet within five years. Yudof said no student would be required to take courses online. Governor Brown has been pushing online classes as a way to reduce education costs. Meanwhile, Yudof said he’s committed to avoiding further tuition increases. San Francisco Chronicle

California demographics. A population shift is underway in California, with Asia replacing Latin America as the primary source of the state’s immigrants. Census figures show the number of immigrants from Asia has outpaced those from Latin America by two-to-one in the past decade. Asians made up 57 percent of all immigrants to California in 2011. A decade ago, about 42 percent of the immigrants coming to California were from Latin America, mostly Mexico. Sacramento Bee