Back-to-school rundown: 5 things LAUSD parents should know as school starts
*Updated L.A. Unified’s nearly half-a-million district students are headed back to school on Tuesday for the 2019-20 year. While students were away, district officials and advocates began laying the groundwork for the upcoming year’s priorities. On the heels of a failed parcel tax bid, L.A. Unified will continue clamoring for more funding and proposing initiatives...
By Taylor Swaak | August 19, 2019
‘A pretty untenable plan’: As LAUSD moves to combine 5 student support programs into one, advocates fear ‘dilution’ of foster youth services
*Updated July 29 The Foster Youth Achievement Program has changed Skye Carbajal’s life. So the foster student left school early one day in late April to tell the L.A. Unified school board just that. Standing at the podium during an April 23 meeting, Carbajal recounted her accomplishments since she’d joined the program two years ago: She’s...
By Taylor Swaak | July 29, 2019
With less than half of LAUSD’s prospective graduates eligible for California State University system, college trustees eye adding another requirement
The California State University system this week is considering a new admissions requirement for incoming freshmen — a development that’s sparked opposition from L.A. Unified, where less than half of the prospective graduates are eligible to apply under current standards. CSU’s Board of Trustees on Tuesday will review an informal proposal to add a fourth...
By Taylor Swaak | July 22, 2019
In new legal complaint, parents say LAUSD is failing to ensure high-needs students are getting the funding they deserve
*Updated July 23: The California Department of Education on Monday declined to directly intervene, and sent the legal complaint to L.A. Unified and the L.A. County Office of Education to “promptly investigate.” The district and the county have until Sept. 20 to respond. See the CDE letter here. A June 28 version of L.A. Unified’s LCAP, which...
By Taylor Swaak | July 12, 2019
LAUSD approves $7.8 billion budget for next year: Here’s what it means for high-needs students, lowest-performing schools and district finances
*Updated June 25 L.A. Unified board members passed the 2019-20 budget and accountability plan on Tuesday — but not before acknowledging that they are “unintelligible” documents that provide little insight into specific program and funding changes as the district looks to the next school year. “None of the documents add up to anything you can...
By Taylor Swaak | June 21, 2019
‘Voters are tired of you’: A week after parcel tax defeat, LAUSD parents rail at district leaders during 2019-20 budget hearing
*Updated June 17 Parents blasted L.A. Unified officials at a school board hearing this week — one even bursting into tears — offering an angry glimpse into the fractured trust between the community and the district just one week after voters overwhelmingly rejected a new parcel tax. Many of the more than 20 speakers at Tuesday’s...
By Taylor Swaak | June 13, 2019
After parcel tax defeat, Los Angeles city and school leaders vow to keep fighting for funding for kids
One day after voters overwhelmingly rejected a $500 million-a-year parcel tax, Los Angeles city and school leaders sent a message to voters: We’ve heard your concerns. And we’re going to keep fighting to fund our schools. “This is just the beginning of our fight,” Superintendent Austin Beutner said as he launched into Wednesday’s news conference....
By Taylor Swaak | June 5, 2019
Los Angeles voters roundly defeat parcel tax, leaving LAUSD on shaky financial footing
*Updated June 5 Los Angeles voters decisively defeated a parcel tax that would have sent $500 million a year to schools, according to unofficial results by the county registrar. Measure EE, which would have charged residents within L.A. Unified boundaries 16 cents per square foot of developed property for 12 years, fell more than 20...
By Taylor Swaak | June 5, 2019
If LAUSD voters approve $500M annual parcel tax Tuesday, it would be their first. Here’s what happened in two California districts that OKed theirs years ago
*Updated June 3 If L.A. Unified’s proposed $500 million annual parcel tax passes Tuesday, it would be uncharted territory for the country’s second-largest school district. L.A. Unified has never had a parcel tax. They aren’t commonplace, with about 9 percent of school districts — most clustered in the Bay Area — passing or renewing parcel...
By Taylor Swaak | May 31, 2019
$500M annual parcel tax unlikely to pass if low voter turnout trend persists, poll shows
L.A. Unified’s proposed $500 million annual parcel tax is unlikely to pass next week if low voter turnout trends continue, a new independent poll finds. The poll, conducted by Probolsky Research, shows that if June 4’s special election sees “high” turnout, or 17 percent of the district’s 2.5 million eligible voters, the parcel tax could be on the...
By Taylor Swaak | May 28, 2019