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LAUSD’s Spanish-speaking parents engage candidates in forum ahead of school board special election

With the stakes high for whoever might take over the Los Angeles Unified School District Board’s District 5 seat in March, nine candidates for the seat faced parents Wednesday night in a forum that gave them a chance to weigh in on issues parents care about. For some parents, the event left a little more to be desired for lack of attention to issues like charters schools in the wake of a massive teacher strike underpinned by the issue. What did get attention was how school board hopefuls plan to...
Tags: News, Education, California, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, City Council, Local News, Eric Garcetti, Gavin Newsom, Ortiz, LMU, Goldberg, Rodriguez, Los Feliz, Eagle Rock


The L.A. teacher strike may be over, but observers warn there’s no ‘clear path forward’ for how LAUSD can afford its new contract

By Taylor Swaak | LA School Report The L.A. Unified school board has approved a contract with its teachers union that officials admit they can’t fully afford, calling the deal’s sustainability into question as the district receives repeated warnings from the county that it’s in severe financial straits. To shoulder about $840 million in added costs through 2021, district officials say they’re largely relying on more state funding and a 2020 California tax referendum — neither of which are guaran...
Tags: News, Education, California, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Aclu, Lausd, Jim Morris, Johnson, Local News, Smith, Usc, Gavin Newsom, Morris, Legislative


For the first time in 6 years, California names its lowest-performing schools. Is yours on the list?

By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report For the first time in six years, California has released the names of its lowest-performing schools. The 780 schools are in the bottom 5 percent of public K-12 schools as measured by the state’s new accountability tool, the California School Dashboard, and require “comprehensive school improvement.” The state also identified about 859 other schools that need “targeted assistance” because they are struggling to adequately serve particular groups of st...
Tags: News, Education, California, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Local News, state Department of Education, Litt, LA school, California Department of Education, Hahnel, California School Dashboard, Carrie Hahnel, Seth Litt


LAUSD parents are feeling betrayed and ‘extremely hurt’ as the push to limit charter growth begins

By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report Parents who have children in charter schools said they are feeling betrayed and “ready to fight back” in the wake of a Los Angeles Unified School District vote earlier this week calling for a moratorium on new charters in the giant school system. Families, teachers and students from Los Angeles’s independent charter schools turned out by the thousands Tuesday to urge school board members to reject a resolution calling for a moratorium on new charters...
Tags: News, Education, Sacramento, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Romania, Lausd, UC Davis, Guatemala, Local News, Gavin Newsom, High Tech, Ponce, Garcia, Sun Valley


After teacher strike agreement, LAUSD school board to vote Tuesday on supporting charter school moratorium

By Taylor Swaak, LA School Report The L.A. Unified school board will vote Tuesday on a resolution that would direct the superintendent to pursue a moratorium on new charter schools in the district. The resolution would also require the school board to call on state officials to study the financial impact of charters on the district to inform revisions to the state’s charter law. And the superintendent would have to report if a moratorium requires a voter-approved ballot initiative. A school boar...
Tags: News, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Local News, Castro, Gavin Newsom, State, Perez, San Fernando Valley, United Teachers Los Angeles, Austin Beutner, LA school, Reason Foundation, California Department of Education


The LAUSD teacher strike is over. Now parents who felt ignored want to be included as LAUSD and UTLA move forward with their new agreement

By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report While tens of thousands of Los Angeles educators and families on Wednesday celebrated the end of the six-day teacher strike, about a dozen parents held their own news conference outside City Hall to make sure their voices were heard too. Wearing white to signify neutrality, they said they felt that parents, particularly those in high-needs schools, were sidelined during the negotiations and the strike. Now that the teachers contract is settled, they ...
Tags: News, Uncategorized, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Local News, Eric Garcetti, Cruz, City Hall, Wilmington, South Los Angeles, Pacheco, East Los Angeles, San Fernando Valley, Garcetti


As LAUSD teacher strike stretches on, students experiencing homelessness are hit hard

Laura Fay | LA School Report The Los Angeles teacher strike has now lasted a full week, and the work stoppage is compounding stress and uncertainty for students and families who rely on schools for meals, childcare and stability, especially for those experiencing homelessness. More than 17,000 students in L.A. Unified are classified as homeless, and the strike comes amid a federal shutdown that is threatening to cause additional crises for their families. Read full LAUSD strike coverage here The...
Tags: News, California, Politico, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, States, Lausd, Local News, Miranda, Leon, Taft, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Los Angeles County, Roberts, U S Department of Housing and Urban Development


Strike or no strike, LAUSD has another problem: Crippling debt

By Taylor Swaak, LA School Report The looming teacher strike in Los Angeles, no matter how it’s sliced, comes down to money — but not the salary raises and cost of new hires that have kept the district and its teachers union apart during nearly two years of contract negotiations. The real money problem, experts say, lies with the district’s skyrocketing long-term debt. Experts warn that for the district to stay out of bankruptcy, it must slash its billions in long-term liabilities, much of it ti...
Tags: News, California, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, San Diego, Union, Lausd, Compton, Inglewood, United Teachers Los Angeles, Austin Beutner, Alex Caputo Pearl, LA school, Reason Foundation, Jeanne Allen


Roberta Weintraub, ‘warrior for the San Fernando Valley,’ dies at 83

Roberta Weintraub, a time-honored civic leader and former LA school board member with deep roots in the San Fernando Valley, died on Jan. 1, 2019. She was 83. She first gained notoriety as an activist against school-busing in the 1970s, and went on to champion issues of education and law enforcement across ideological lines. Weintraub represented the east Valley on the Los Angeles Unified School District board before she was elected president four times during her 14-year tenure on the dais. Fol...
Tags: News, Congress, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Obituaries, John F Kennedy, City Council, Local News, Lapd, Los Angeles Times, Ucla, Michael, Ava, Daily News, Northridge


California School Dashboard gets an online upgrade. But for school accountability, has it gone far enough?

By Taylor Swaak, LA School Report The much-anticipated redesign of California’s maligned school dashboard is live — but some education advocates aren’t convinced it went far enough to improve usability for parents. The California School Dashboard is a state-run platform that rates districts, schools and student groups on indicators such as test scores and student suspensions — and, as of this month, chronic absenteeism and college/career readiness — on a scale of five colors: red (the worst) to ...
Tags: News, Education, California, La, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Jerry Brown, Local News, Education Trust, Litt, LA school, California Board of Education, Education Commission of the States, Top Stories LADN, Top Stories Breeze


West Valley residents weigh in on LAUSD study to turn district sites into housing for homeless youth, families

A push to study whether Los Angeles public schools can house homeless students and their families is drawing fierce pushback from some West Valley residents, who say their area is too residential — and becoming even more so with major developments in the pipeline — for such an effort. More than 200 residents packed a room at the American Legion Hall in Woodland Hills Wednesday night, with the overflow spilling outside despite the pouring rain during what was the first community meeting since the...
Tags: News, Education, La, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, City Council, Pasadena, Local News, Platt, Valley, Walker, Winnetka, Woodland Hills, LA County


Telfair Elementary: The heart of LAUSD’s homeless crisis could become ground zero for change

By Taylor Swaak, LA School Report If LA Unified’s growing student homeless crisis had an epicenter, Telfair Elementary in the northeast San Fernando Valley would be it. Last year the school had the highest percentage of homeless students; so far this year, it’s tied for first place. And as the district explores expanding support for its estimated 16,000 homeless students, Telfair could be first in line for help — and a model for the rest of LA Unified. The school board in November passed a resol...
Tags: School, News, Education, California, La, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Homeless, Lausd, Times, Local News, Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles Times, LA Times, LA County


Could LAUSD house homeless students and families?

By Taylor Swaak, LA School Report LA Unified’s school board voted Tuesday to study using district property to house homeless students and their families, despite split public opinion. In a 4-1 vote with one abstention, school board members approved a resolution giving Superintendent Austin Beutner six months to research the feasibility of using district sites to: Allow overnight parking for homeless students and families, in collaboration with the Safe Parking L.A. program,Provide overnight shel...
Tags: Texas, News, Education, California, La, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Sport, Soccer, Homeless, San Jose, Venice, Lausd, Local News, Los Angeles Times, Murray


LAUSD chief Austin Beutner wants to bring local control, family involvement to schools

“Decision-making should be closer to the school site, to the teachers,” said LAUSD Superintendent Austin Beutner. “They have the strongest relationship with students and families.” (File photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG) By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report Six months after taking over as the Los Angeles Unified School District’s superintendent and vowing to bring change, Austin Beutner is weeks away from unveiling his strategic plan for the nation’s second-largest sc...
Tags: News, Education, La, Angels, Sacramento, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Local News, Los Angeles Times, Jones, Fafsa, Ernst Young, Los Angeles Daily News, David Crane


LA County to LAUSD: Drop in financial reserves ‘continues to be alarming’

Laura Greanias, LA School Report LA Unified’s budget has been approved for now by its county overseers, but they gave the district a new deadline for it to address its structural deficit or face a takeover. In a  delivered late Thursday, the Los Angeles County Office of Education said the district’s continued use of deficit spending — meaning it is eating into its savings to cover its operating costs  — has led to a “drastic” drop in its financial reserves and “continues to be alarming.” “LAUSD ...
Tags: News, Education, La, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Local News, Valley, LA County, United Teachers Los Angeles, Austin Beutner, LA school, Houlihan, UTLA, LA Unified, Top Stories LADN


The ‘discipline gap’ for blacks in California schools remains as wide as ever

By Mario Koran, LA School Report Between 2011 and 2017, out-of-school suspensions in California fell 46 percent, and the rate of suspensions dropped by more than a third. That students are suspended less frequently is welcome news for civil rights advocates who’ve long been concerned about the fact that certain groups — black students, foster youth, and students with disabilities, in particular — are far more likely to face suspension than their peers. This disparity is often referred to as the ...
Tags: Post, News, Education, Obama, California, California News, Barack Obama, Sport, Soccer, Buffalo, Jerry Brown, The Washington Post, Brookings Institution, Eden, Ucla, Oklahoma City


The clock is ticking: LAUSD board members have 60 days to decide how to fill Ref Rodriguez’s seat

By Mario Koran, LA School Report The ouster of Los Angeles Unified School District board member Ref Rodriguez — who resigned Monday after pleading guilty to money-laundering charges — means the remaining board members must now decide when and how to replace him. They have 60 days to decide a path forward, and the clock is ticking. Right now, board members have three options, said LA Unified’s general counsel David Holmquist: They can appoint someone to serve out the remainder of Rodriguez’s term...
Tags: News, Education, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Los Angeles City Council, LA Times, Rodriguez, Los Angeles Unified School District, United Teachers Los Angeles, Alex Caputo Pearl, LA school, UTLA, San Diego Unified, LA Unified


Disgraced charter school exec pleads guilty to criminal money laundering, resigns from LA school board

Ref Rodriguez ran a big-money campaign to be the first representative of a charter school to be elected to LA's public school board; the money came from the deep-pocketed investors in charter schools, and was criminally laundered with Rodriguez's help and led to him being made president of LA's board of ed. (more…)
Tags: Post, Business, Corruption, Crime, News, Education, La, Fraud, Rodriguez, LA school, Charter Schools, Ref Rodriguez, The Invisible Hand Picking The Public's Pocket


Ex-LA school board chief pleads guilty in corruption case

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The former president of the Los Angeles school board has pleaded guilty to reimbursing campaign contributions to friends and family members and resigned from his most recent position as a board member. Under an agreement with prosecutors, Ref Rodriguez pleaded guilty Monday to conspiracy to commit an assumed name contribution and […]
Tags: News, Los Angeles, Ap, LA school, Nation & World, Ref Rodriguez


How a Los Angeles school board member teamed up with SpaceX’s Elon Musk to test a mini-sub built for Thailand soccer team’s rescue

By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report Water levels were rising dangerously high and time was running out to rescue a team of soccer boys and their coach who had been trapped for two weeks in a Thailand cave. Thousands of miles away in Los Angeles County, Elon Musk, the famed founder of the SpaceX rocket company, and his crew were holed up at the company’s Hawthorne headquarters designing and building a mini-submarine escape pod. News came Saturday as they raced to finish the aluminum...
Tags: Business, Spacex, Elon Musk, News, Navy, California, Oregon, Uncategorized, Los Angeles, Sport, Chicago, Thailand, Soccer, Local News, Musk, Wild Boar


As LA Unified preps $7.4 billion budget, pensions, not enrollment declines, are ‘eating up’ costs, study says

By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report To plug a budget hole without increasing class sizes, LA Unified will cut or reassign nearly 500 positions. But fewer than 70 people will actually lose their jobs. Those are highlights of the new $7.4 billion budget, which will be presented to the public next Tuesday and approved by the school board the same day. The budget is slightly lower than last year’s, which was $7.5 billion. “The 15 percent in central office reduction has to be solid in order...
Tags: News, Education, California, La, Uncategorized, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Jerry Brown, Brown, Los Angeles County, McKenna, CSUN, Scott Schmerelson, United Teachers Los Angeles, LA school


Is LA Unified too slow to help its neediest students?

By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report Two reports released Tuesday, June 7, urged the Los Unified School District to start making tough choices to boost student achievement and to move faster in delivering more funds to the schools serving the neediest students. The first study found that LA Unified has been slow to get increased state funding to the schools serving students with the highest needs, particularly in elementary and middle schools. The fourth annual “Report Card Progress in ...
Tags: News, Education, Uncategorized, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, Oakland, UC Berkeley, Denver, United Way, San Fernando Valley, Austin Beutner, LA school, Local Control Funding Formula, Beutner


Education emerging as key issue in governor’s race while Villaraigosa and Cox battle behind front-runner Newsom

By David Cantor | The 74 In February 2015, barely three months after he was elected to a second term as California’s lieutenant governor, Gavin Newsom announced he would run for governor in 2018. The one-time mayor of San Francisco, where his dash and early support of gay marriage made him a high-profile hero on the left, raised millions for his campaign long before another candidate entered the race. He has never trailed, and will likely remain the front-runner heading into next month’s “jungle...
Tags: News, Education, Congress, California, La, New York City, Uncategorized, America, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Barack Obama, Sport, Cta, Netflix, Soccer, Gop


Education emerging as key issue in governor’s race while Villaraigois and Cox battle behind front-runner Newsom

By David Cantor | The 74 In February 2015, barely three months after he was elected to a second term as California’s lieutenant governor, Gavin Newsom announced he would run for governor in 2018. The one-time mayor of San Francisco, where his dash and early support of gay marriage made him a high-profile hero on the left, raised millions for his campaign long before another candidate entered the race. He has never trailed, and will likely remain the front-runner heading into next month’s “jungle...
Tags: News, Education, Congress, California, La, New York City, Uncategorized, America, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Barack Obama, Sport, Cta, Netflix, Soccer, Gop


For new LAUSD chief Austin Beutner, the first day of school is Tuesday. First up, the budget

By Laura Greanias | LA School Report Austin Beutner’s first day on the job as LA Unified’s superintendent is going to be a long day of listening and learning. He starts before dawn Tuesday at a bus yard and ends with an evening parent meeting. But he’s also intent on helping parents and the greater Los Angeles community learn about the behemoth that is LA Unified. And he’s starting with maybe the biggest nut of all: the budget. Last week and again Monday, Beutner met with Chief Financial Officer...
Tags: News, Education, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Lausd, SEIU, Local News, Committee, Cancun, CSU, Sun Valley, San Fernando Valley, Austin Beutner, LA school, Beutner


LA Daily News partners with coalition to present gubernatorial forum

The Los Angeles Daily News is partnering with a coalition of groups, including The Chronicle for Social Change and The Children’s Defense Fund, to present a gubernatorial forum on May 15. Titled “Building Our Future: A Forum on Children with California’s Gubernatorial Candidates,” the forum will focus on child welfare, juvenile  justice, educational equity, health care, poverty and access to technology for young people. Confirmed participants include former Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa...
Tags: Politics, News, California, California News, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Jerry Brown, Local News, Gavin Newsom, Brown, San Fernando Valley, John Cox, Los Angeles Daily News, LA school, National Assessment of Educational Progress


How a mom helped her son with ADHD shine by getting the most out of his Individualized Education Plan

By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report Lia Martin’s 10-year-old son, Taylor, used to be two years behind grade level and didn’t want to go to school. Now he’s a year ahead in both math and English language arts — plus his teachers helped him discover his artistic talent and he is representing his classroom in an LA Unified art contest. To help Taylor, who has been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Martin said she followed her “mother’s instinct” but also learned how...
Tags: News, Education, California, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Rick Santorum, Kansas, Local News, Taylor, Einstein, Centers For Disease Control And Prevention, Martin, Michigan State, Golden State, IEP


LA parent voice: How a mom helped her son with ADHD shine by getting the most out of his Individualized Education Plan

By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | LA School Report Lia Martin’s 10-year-old son, Taylor, used to be two years behind grade level and didn’t want to go to school. Now he’s a year ahead in both math and English language arts — plus his teachers helped him discover his artistic talent and he is representing his classroom in an LA Unified art contest. To help Taylor, who has been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Martin said she followed her “mother’s instinct” but also learned how...
Tags: News, Education, California, La, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Rick Santorum, Kansas, Local News, Taylor, Einstein, Centers For Disease Control And Prevention, Martin, Michigan State, Golden State


LAUSD approves expensive health benefits contract but vows to be tougher in negotiations going forward

By Mike Szymanski, LA School Report Despite parents’ pleas to deal now with a coming deficit that could require huge cuts, a narrow majority of LA Unified’s school board on Tuesday approved a new contract that commits the district to paying for its employees’ generous health benefits at current levels for the next three years. The contract passed 4-2, with board members Nick Melvoin and Ref Rodriguez casting no votes. The eight labor unions covered by the contract — representing 60,000 employees...
Tags: Politics, News, Education, California, La, Los Angeles, Sport, Soccer, Healthcare, Lausd, Local News, Golden State, Rodriguez, Scott Schmerelson, United Teachers Los Angeles, LA school


Shirley Ford, passionate Los Angeles education advocate and co-founder of Parent Revolution, dies at 69

From LA School Report   Shirley Ford, 69, a Los Angeles mother who helped pass California’s landmark “parent trigger” legislation and made an indelible mark in the national movement for high-quality schools for underserved communities, died Sunday after battling cancer, eliciting an outpouring of tributes in California and throughout the country. Ford’s dogged search for good schools for her two boys was the beginning of her fight for educational justice, ensuring that all families — no matter t...
Tags: Education, California, La, Uncategorized, Los Angeles, Sport, Austin, Soccer, United States, Obituaries, Ford, Tennessee, Obituary, Lausd, Shirley, Local News