Student activists fear that LA Unified’s vegan pilot program may just wither away
(Click on photo to play video of the school board meeting.) It was one of the most uncomfortably dramatic moments at any LA Unified School Board meeting in recent memory — maybe the oddest of any in the country this year. Flanked by her friends, 15-year-old Lila Copeland stood in silence for a minute and a...
By Mike Szymanski | July 20, 2017 1:40 pm
Austin Beutner explains the purpose of the LA Unified Advisory Task Force, and 7 other things you should know about how it will help kids
*UPDATED Philanthropist and former LA Times publisher Austin Beutner said he doesn’t see the new task force he is co-leading as a body that has any intention of usurping the new LA Unified School Board, or telling the superintendent what to do. “We are here to support Michelle King, and offer suggestions,” Beutner said in...
By Mike Szymanski | July 19, 2017 7:08 pm
‘See me for who I really am’: Inside Nick Melvoin’s plan to win over L.A. parents and teachers
When Nick Melvoin unseated LA Unified school board President Steve Zimmer, teachers threatened to strike. Others worried about having to find a new job. A national reporter was surprised to learn in an interview that opponents were all wrong when they portrayed Melvoin as a Trump supporter. And there was palpable trepidation by a server who...
By Mike Szymanski | July 18, 2017 3:01 pm
School board president says pay increase ‘will help all of us with our duties’
* UPDATED An independent city panel gave the LA Unified school board members a 174 percent raise on Monday night, from $45,627 to $125,000, but according to new board President Ref Rodriguez, it was an unexpected development. “This is a total surprise,” Rodriguez told LA School Report. “But it will help all of us with our...
By Mike Szymanski | July 12, 2017 3:17 pm
Tears, applause, and hope set theme for 3 newly inducted school board members
Mónica García carried a little green alien with her as she took her seat after being inaugurated for a fourth term on the LA Unified school board. “It’s a little alien named ‘Z’ from my niece Maya, and it’s supposed to spread love and harmony and peace and calm,” Garcia said. (And it’s a social-emotional...
By Mike Szymanski | July 7, 2017 3:16 pm
Ref Rodriguez is elected LAUSD board president and wins near-unanimous support for his ‘kids first’ resolution
The new members of the LA Unified school board were inducted Thursday, and the board’s first votes — on who would be their leader — broke along expected lines. The pro-reform majority exercised its muscle, voting 4-3 to elect as their president Ref Rodriguez, the co-founder one of LA’s largest charter school organizations. But immediately...
By Mike Szymanski | July 6, 2017 8:33 pm