2 more candidates enter LAUSD school board races


Two more people this week entered the March 7 race for LA Unified school board.

Gregory Martayan will join Nick Melvoin in challenging board President Steve Zimmer for his District 4 seat. And Joanne Baltierrez-Fernandez joins one other challenger in seeking an open seat in District 6.

Martayan and Baltierrez-Fernandez filed with the city Ethics Commission on Tuesday an intent to raise money for their respective races. Candidates officially file to run for the seats in November.

Zimmer has represented school board District 4, which includes the Westside and Hollywood, since 2009. In his latest re-election bid, he won with 52 percent of the vote.

Melvoin has taken a wide early lead in fundraising. The latest campaign finance records show Melvoin has raised $124,344 from Jan. 1 through June 30. Records show that Zimmer raised $7,304 in the same period.

Melvoin touted grassroots support for his campaign.

Zimmer said he has been focused on statewide ballot measures in the Nov. 8 election, including Prop. 55, an extension of income taxes on the wealthy for public education, and Prop. 58, which would repeal a law that prohibits non-English languages from being used in public schools. Zimmer said he is also working to elect Democrat Hillary Clinton as president.

Martayan did not immediately return a request for comment.

In the board District 6 race, where Monica Ratliff is not seeking re-election as she is running for Los Angeles City Council, Baltierrez-Fernandez joins Araz Parseghian in running for the seat. The district encompasses the east San Fernando Valley.

Neither candidate has reported any fundraising or spending to the Ethics Commission. Both just filed their intentions to run this month.

Baltierrez-Fernandez unsuccessfully ran for the 39th District state Assembly seat occupied by Patty Lopez. She came in fourth in the June primary.

Baltierrez-Fernandez, who served on the San Fernando City Council from 1994 to 1999, said Friday that as she was campaigning for the state Assembly seat, many LA Unified school district issues came up.

She is a mental health clinician and said she sees that there is a need for more mental health services in the public school system.

“Children can’t learn if they’re angry, depressed or worried,” she said.

The other seat up for election is in board District 2 occupied by Monica Garcia since 2006.

Four candidates have filed paperwork with the Ethics Commission to raise money to run for the seat, which covers East LA, Pico-Union, downtown Los Angeles and its surrounding neighborhoods.

Garcia has dominated early fundraising, the latest campaign finance records show. Seeking her third term on the seven-member board, Garcia collected $119,858 in donations between Jan. 1 and June 30. One challenger, Carl Petersen, raised $805 in the same period.

Other candidates for the seat are Berny L. Motto, Walter Bannister and Manuel “Manny” Aldana Jr., who all filed their paperwork within the past two weeks.

L.A. Unified school board member Monica Garcia dominates fundraising in re-election bid

Mónica García

Mónica García

Seven months out from the primary, L.A. Unified school board member Monica Garcia has already raised nearly 150 times more money than her opponent, including donations from former L.A. Unified Superintendent John Deasy and both charter school and L.A. district employees.

Garcia, seeking her third term on the seven-member board, collected $119,858 in donations between Jan. 1 and June 30, according to the latest campaign finance documents filed with the city Ethics Commission. She has spent about $18,000.

Challenger Carl Petersen has raised $805 and spent $412. Neither candidate responded to requests for comment.

Garcia’s 2013 re-election bid and the two other contested school board races that year received national attention for the large amount of money — $6.16 million — poured into the campaigns by independent expenditure committees, which are not subject to fundraising limits.

About $1.2 million of the independent expenditure money went into Garcia’s race to support her. Independent expenditure committees meanwhile spent $113,000 trying unsuccessfully to defeat her.

She received support in 2013 from a coalition formed by then-Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa that donated money to all three school board races and received backing from outside donors like former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. She raised $504,224 on her own that year and spent $507,032, according to city finance documents. Her closest competitor in the five-way race, Robert Skeels, raised and spent $19,000.

This year, in addition to donations from Deasy and charter and L.A. Unified school educators and officials, Garcia’s contributors so far include philanthropists, film executives, the Los Angeles School Police Management Association PAC, several employee unions, Eli and Edythe Broad, and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings.

Garcia, who was board president for an unprecedented six consecutive years, from 2007 to 2013,  has been an advocate of charter schools and sweeping reforms to low-performing schools. She has called for “Diplomas for All” with a goal of 100 percent graduation rate in the district.

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Challenger Nick Melvoin raises more than incumbent Steve Zimmer early on in school board bid

Nick Melvoin

Nick Melvoin


The candidate challenging LA Unified board President Steve Zimmer for school board has raised more money early on in the March 7 election campaign than the incumbent did in his entire re-election bid three years ago, according to city campaign finance records.

Nick Melvoin announced this week that as of the June 30 filing deadline, he has raised $124, 344. Records show that Zimmer raised just $7,304 in the same period.

“I’m grateful to all the individuals who have supported this campaign so far,” Melvoin said in a statement. “I’ve just begun to share my vision for improving public education in Los Angeles, and I look forward to working on behalf of all the communities in the 4th District to turn those plans into real change.”

Melvoin noted that many of his campaign contributions were $100 or less, but about 30 percent of the donors who gave more than $100 live outside California, records show.

The early filings indicate that money will likely be pouring into this race, as it has in previous elections for school board seats.

But money wasn’t the deciding factor in Zimmer’s previous reelection bid. He won with 52 percent of the vote even though he was outspent by his opponent.

Zimmer said he is “very focused” on November, specifically the passage of statewide ballot measures Prop. 55 and Prop. 58 and the election of Hillary Clinton as president. Prop. 55 is an extension of income taxes on the wealthy to fund public education under Prop. 30 that was passed by voters in 2012. Prop. 58, the California Multilingual Education Act, would repeal a law that prohibits non-English languages from being used in public schools.

“There will be plenty of time to talk about the looming battle for control of the school board and the obscene amounts of money that will be raised and spent on that struggle,” Zimmer said in an email. “For now, as Michelle Obama said this week, ‘We have important work to do.'” 

It is early in the citywide election season. The primary is March 7. The general election will be held May 16. If no candidate receives more than 50 percent of the votes in the primary, the top two vote-getters will compete in the general election.

Melvoin launched his campaign in February. So far, no one else has entered the race. Candidates officially file for the race in November but can begin to raise money.

In his previous reelection bid in 2013, Zimmer raised a total of $122,000. His opponent, Kate Anderson, brought in $263,603. Independent expenditure committees poured nearly $2.7 million into the race.

The school board races that year received national attention and money from outside donors like former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who gave $1 million to a coalition formed by then-Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa that donated money to the three school board races and supported a slate of candidates. Villaraigosa’s group opposed Zimmer.


Two other school board seats are up for reelection next spring. Longtime board member Monica Garcia, who was first elected in 2006, is seeking reelection in board District 2. She is being challenged by Carl Petersen. Petersen ran in 2015 for the school board District 3 seat and came in 5th place in the primary. (Scott Schmerelson won that seat.) The city Ethics Commission has not posted campaign finance reports for Petersen or Garcia on its website.

School board member Monica Ratliff will not seek reelection and has opted to run for City Council. No one has announced an intention to run for the open board District 6 seat in the East San Fernando Valley.

So far no independent expenditure committees have spent any money in the school board races.

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Ratliff Retires Campaign Debt With Broad Base of Support

Monica Ratliff is sworn in by her mother

Monica Ratliff is sworn in by her mother

Before her election to the LA school board in May, Monica Ratliff was virtually unknown. Now, the race to influence her is on — and all sides have entered.

Ratliff, a former teacher and upset winner over Antonio Sanchez in District 6, has raised just over $30,000 since her election to help retire her campaign debt, according to a campaign finance report just released by the city ethics commission. The donors come from all poles of the education debate, giving her at least a veneer of political nonalignment. Ratliff’s ideological stance — that is, how she might line up on school board votes — has been the subject of much speculation. By some indications, she could be something of a swing vote, like board members Steve Zimmer and Richard Vladovic, even though she received strong teacher support in the general election campaign.

Among post-election contributions, UTLA President Warren Fletcher gave $1,000, the maximum allowable amount in School Board races, while UTLA Secretary David Lyell gave $350, and Brent Smiley, vice chairman of the union’s political action committee and a campaign volunteer, donated $50. The California Federation of Teachers’ Political Action Committee also gave $1,000.

On the other end of the spectrum, the California Charter School Association’s Political Action Committee gave $1,000, while Kathrine Baxter, wife of Frank Baxter, chipped in $500. Both Frank Baxter and the CCSA gave hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Coalition for School Reform, which spent heavily in an attempt to elect Sanchez.

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“Motley Crew” Attend Ratliff Campaign Debt Fundraiser

la-ed-end-lausd-district-6-20130426-001-1Less than a week before she’s due to be sworn in as a new School Board member, Monica Ratliff held a fundraiser at Farfalla in Los Feliz to raise money in order to pay off her campaign debt.

According to sources who attended the lunch, the roughly 20 to 25 people who were there comprised a “motley crew” from both sides of the public education debate — including not only union leaders such as teachers union President Warren Fletcher and UTLA General Counsel Jesus Quinonez, but also charter school operators such as Dixon Slingerland of Youth Policy Institute, Dr. Jacqueline Elliot of PUC, and Liza Bercovici of Gabriella Charter School.

There were also a few education reform donors — perhaps most notably Frank Baxter, the Republican ex-diplomat who gave $100,000 to the Coalition for School Reform, the independent expenditure committee that supported Ratliff’s opponent, Antonio Sanchez.

Baxter told LA School Report that he found Ratliff to be a “very impressive woman. She seems really committed to children-first in LA Unified.”

One other notable attendee was Jefferson Crain, the Executive Officer of the LAUSD School Board, who is in charge of calling the roll, recording votes and making sure that the Board follows proper procedure.

The event was at least partially organized by independent consultant and ex-Board member David Tokofsky, who served informally in Ratliff’s “kitchen cabinet” during the election. A source that was there said the candidate was introduced by Tokofsky, then made a speech which lasted under three minutes.

According to the last campaign finance statement submitted before the election, the Ratliff campaign had nearly $12,000 in debt, although one source said it was closer to $14,000.

Having debt like this is not unusual for a campaign, but fundraisers held after an election to retire the debt presents an early opportunity for people to donate money to a candidate who’s already won.

Previous posts: Ratliff Supports Proposal Linking Teacher Pay to Test ScoresUTLA President Appears at Sanchez, Ratliff EventsDoor-to-Door in Sunland with Monica Ratliff

Reform Coalition Focuses Massive War Chest on Mailers

Close-up of Coalition mailer for District 6 candidate Antonio Sanchez

As of May 4, the independent expenditure (IE) committee known as the Coalition for School Reform had a staggering $850,000 left in the bank, according to papers filed with the City Ethics Commission.

That dwarfs the $55,000 left in the coffers of the Antonio Sanchez campaign, whom the Coalition is supporting, as well as the $21,000 held by the Monica Ratliff campaign.

Both are seeking to win the District 6 (East Valley) School Board runoff election that’s being held May 21.

Rather than airing new ads on television or radio, or going for broke with a door-to-door field operation, Coalition spokesman Addisu Demissie said the group would spend heavily on direct mail.

“The good thing about mail is, we can talk to different people in specific ways,” Demissie told LA School Report.  “It’s more efficient that way. You know how expensive TV can be in Los Angeles.”

The Coalition’s recent mailers have all been positive — in contrast to some of the pieces sent out in the primary, some of which were negative.

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Mayoral Debate: Teachers Give to Garcetti Super PAC

Garcetti meeting with parents of 24th St. Elementary via Parent Revolution

The American Federation of Teachers and its California chapter, CFT, have just given a combined $60,000 to a super PAC named  Lots of People Who Support Eric Garcetti for Mayor.

Although UTLA, the local teachers union, endorsed Garcetti back in February, this is the first time a teachers union has spent any money on the 2013 Mayoral election.

“I think the AFT is sending a loud and clear message that the status quo — ensuring that the worst teachers are impacting students — is still the law of the land,” said political consultant Michael Trujillo, a strong (though unpaid) supporter of Garcetti’s opponent, Wendy Greuel. “And they’re gonna hold Eric Garcetti’s feet to the fire.”

The union contribution may come up later today, when the candidates will take part in an education-focused debate hosted by KPCC.

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Morning Read: Study Praises Teacher Evaluation Tool

First Academic Study of Controversial LA Unified Teacher Evaluation Program
An academic study of a teacher evaluation method that looks at how much teachers are able to improve students’ test scores gave the pilot program a good grade. But the study comes too late — the teacher’s union and Los Angeles Unified School District agreed not to use the measure in the district’s new teacher evaluation protocols. KPCC

L.A. Unified Fight Focuses on Breakfast Program
Los Angeles Unified will eliminate a classroom breakfast program serving nearly 200,000 children, reject more school police, cut administrators and scale back new construction projects unless the school board votes to approve them, according to Supt. John Deasy. LA Times
See also: LA School Report, Sac Bee, LA Daily News, KPCC

‘Super PACs’ Negate Spending Limits in L.A. Mayor’s Race
As groups raising funds for Greuel and Garcetti pour money into the race — a record $6.1 million so far — voter-approved contribution restrictions become meaningless. LA Times

Eric Garcetti for Mayor
Perhaps most important, Garcetti has demonstrated the capacity to grow, learn and improve his performance. He admits mistakes, such as his vote in favor of a settlement allowing, for a time, virtually unregulated digital billboards. LAT (editorial page)

L.A. Schools Finish One-Two in National Academic Decathlon
After months of preparation, Granada Hills Charter High wins the title for the third straight year. Finishing second was El Camino Real Charter High, a six-time national champion. LA Times
See also: Sac Bee

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Morning Read: Did UTLA Leaders Make a Deal With Candidate?

Rumor of Deal Roils Teachers Union
The leadership of the Los Angeles teachers union is roiled over whether its officials made a private deal with a Board of Education candidate whom critics view as an ally of anti-labor forces. LA Times

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg Donates $350,000 to LAUSD Reformer’s Campaign
With the runoff now less than a month away, Bloomberg has given the coalition an additional $350,000 – again at Villaraigosa’s request – to support the election of Antonio Sanchez to the District 6 seat. LA Daily News
See also: LA School Report

Teacher Evaluation Bill Opposed by Unions Dies in Committee
Legislation that would have required more frequent evaluations of educators was killed by a state Senate committee Wednesday under strong opposition from teachers’ unions. LA Times
See also: LA School Report, SI&A Cabinet Report

Jerry Brown Vows Battle With Democratic Critics of Education Plan
Gov. Jerry Brown offered a spirited defense of his plan to overhaul the state’s education system Wednesday and warned Democratic critics of his plan that they were “going to get the battle of their lives” if they attempt to change key parts of his proposal. LA Times
See also: EdSource, Fresno Bee

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Coalition for School Reform Gets Big Donations

Eli Broad

The Coalition for School Reform’s District 6 (East San Fernando Valley) runoff election coffers have been replenished thanks to big donations received from Los Angeles philanthropist Eli Broad and StudentsFirst, Michelle Rhee’s education advocacy group, among others.

According to reports just filed with the LA City Ethics Commission, Broad gave the Coalition $250,000. StudentsFirst contributed another $100,000. A LA-area business consulting group called Aurora Management Partners contributed $30,000 to the Coalition, and Century City 1800 Partners gave $20,000. As LA School Report reported Monday, the Coalition had $230,000 in its war chest at the beginning of April. These new contributions push that amount to $630,000.

Previous posts: Runoff 2013: Slow Fundraising Start for District 6; Runoff: Union & LA Times Might Shift Endorsements

Runoff 2013: Slow Fundraising Start for District 6

Voters head to the polls in less than six weeks to decide the East San Fernando Valley District 6 School Board runoff between Antonio Sanchez and Monica Ratliff, but things are off to a pretty slow start when it comes to fundraising and spending.

In terms of direct campaign fundraising, Ratliff hasn’t raised any money at all since the primary election, and Sanchez has raised just $15,000 since early March.

As for the IE committees, the latest financial reports from the LA City Ethics Commission cover a time period between mid-February and April 6:

*UTLA-PACE, the teachers union’s political arm, received $237,000 in contributions, as well as $628,000 in “miscellaneous cash increases” but only has $73,000 left for the runoff because the union spent heavily in the weeks leading up to the primary. (See report here.)

*The Coalition for School Reform received $712,000 in contributions during the same time period. But it also spent heavily on the primary, so the Coalition has $230,000 in its account to spend on the District 6 election. (See report here.)

*And the Local 99 branch of the Service Employees International Union collected $398,000 between February and April. It has $261,000 to spend on the runoff. (See report here.)

In terms of spending, outside groups including the Coalition for School Reform and the LA County Federation of Labor spent almost $1.3 million to support Sanchez in the primary, but they have spent only $66,000 on him since then.

LA School Report will keep track of campaign spending and will update you with more up-to-date numbers as we get them.

Morning Read: State Democrats Pass Anti-Reform Resolution

California Democrats Blast Efforts to Overhaul Schools
California Democrats on Sunday condemned efforts led by members of their own party to overhaul the nation’s schools, arguing that groups such as StudentsFirst and Democrats for Education Reform are fronts for Republicans and corporate interests. LA Times

L.A. School Reform Effort Draws Diverse Group of Wealthy Donors
Republicans, liberals, Hollywood notables and global corporate executives are among those who gave to the Coalition for School Reform. LA Times

LAUSD Chief John Deasy Draws Fire as He Pursues Aggressive Reform Plan
The reforms that Deasy enacted – and just how aggressively he’s pursued them – have put the fast-talking New Englander at the center of a heated debate over the future of the nation’s second-largest school district. LA Daily News

Interest in Teaching Continues to Drop in California
Interest in teaching is steadily dropping in California, with the number of educators earning a teaching credential dipping by 12% last year — marking the eighth straight annual decline. LA Times
See also: EdSource

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April 11 Next Disclosure Date for Independent Committees

Now that the dust has started to settle around last week’s LAUSD Board primary election, you might be wondering what outside spending groups have in store for the May runoff election for the District 6 (East San Fernando Valley) Board seat.

However, it may be awhile. The Coalition for School Reform and UTLA-PACE won’t have to report contributions or expenditures again until April 11, when the next round of pre-election reports will be due at the LA City Ethics Commission. UTLA-PACE, which is a longstanding general purpose committee that is active throughout different election cycles, doesn’t have to provide updates until it begins spending, so we may have to wait until after April 11 to see its reports.

Previous posts: Union Schedules Special Session To Reconsider Endorsements; School Board Primary Averaged $55 Per Vote

School Board Primary Averaged $55 Per Vote

With low voter turnout and sky-high spending, the cost per vote from Tuesday’s primary election — an average of $55 per vote across three districts — is pretty eye-popping.

However, the rate varied widely across the three races:

According to numbers from the LA City Clerk’s office and the LA City Ethics Commission, the per-vote cost in District 2 (East LA) was the highest, at $71 per vote — the result of low voter registration, 13 percent turnout, and the $1.9 million that candidates’ campaigns and outside groups spent.

The cost per vote was $52 dollars in the District 4 Westside race. Though overall spending was the biggest of the three races — $3 million — so was the turnout, which kept the vote cost from surpassing District 2’s.

In the East Valley’s District 6, where the race will go into a May 21 runoff, the price per vote was, comparatively speaking, a modest $42. The union did not spend any money in this race, and so spending was limited to “just” $1.3 million.

The rates come out even higher when calculated by candidate, as done by the Daily News. The campaign to elect Steve Zimmer cost $33 per vote, compared to the pro-Anderson effort’s $52 per vote.  The effort to support Monica Garcia cost about $85 per vote, and the effort to support Antonio Sanchez cost $90 per vote.

Morning Read: Incumbents Prevail; Runoff for District 6

2 Incumbent LA Unified School Board Members Keep Seats in Costly Races
Los Angeles Unified School Board incumbents Steve Zimmer and Monica Garcia kept their seats in a hotly contested election that attracted nearly $6 million, putting it on track to be the most costly school board election in the district’s history. Zimmer won with 52 percent of the vote and Garcia with 56 percent. A third race for district 6 is headed for a runoff. KPCC
See also: LA Times, LA Daily News, LA Weekly, Reuters, LA School Report, EdWeek

$5M in Outside Funds Helps Reelect LAUSD Board Members
Incumbents Monica Garcia and Steve Zimmer survived a bruising reelection campaign with millions in funds from non-local sources. CBS LA

Dismal Turnout Puts Greuel and Garcetti in Mayoral Runoff, Sales Tax Bombs
After months of build-up and millions of dollars spent on a blizzard of television ads and mailers, Los Angeles voters went to the polls Tuesday and selected Wendy Greuel and Eric Garcetti as their next potential mayor. Turnout in the city races was dismal at 16% in a contested mayoral primary. LA Times
See also: LAist

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Outside Spending Up $400K Since Friday – Nears $5 Million

Outside interest groups have spent $4.8 million so far on the three LAUSD Board races — an increase of $400,000 just over the weekend.

So far, UTLA has spent $994,000 on two races — District 2 (East LA) and District 4 (Westside/Hollywood) — but has stayed out of the District 6 (East San Fernando Valley) race so far. (See spending totals here.) The union hasn’t reported any sizable late contributions.

The Coalition for School Reform has spent almost $3.1 million on three candidates. Late contributions it has received include $300,000 from the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) and $250,000 from Rupert Murdoch’s News America Inc. (See contributions report here and spending totals here.)

Primary election day — March 5 — is only a day away, but the total amount of outside spending is likely to rise as these groups make their final primary pushes today and tomorrow.

Previous posts: Coalition Fields Effort to Avoid Runoffs; Analysis: Air War Vs. Boots On the Ground

Update: Direct Fundraising Lags Behind

New disclosure reports available from LA City Ethics reveal that direct fundraising by candidates — limited to $1,000 per individual contributor —  continues to lag far behind outside fundraising, which is unlimited. One possible interpretation is that candidates are hoping that outside expenditures will be enough to fuel their campaigns.  Another is that candidates are waiting to see if they make it through the March 5 primary before focusing on direct appeals.

District 2 (Downtown – East Los Angeles): Robert Skeels has raised a total of $19,000, adding $2,000 since the last reporting period last month; Annamarie Montanez has raised $9,200 altogether, adding less than $100 since last month; Abelardo Diaz has raised $3,900 altogether, adding only a few dollars to his coffers since last month. Isabel Vazquez, has raised $15,200, up $2,000 from last month. Incumbent Board President Monica Garcia has raised $430,000 so far, adding $100,000 since late last month.

District 4 (Westside to Hollywood): School Board member Steve Zimmer has raised $82,000 for his own campaign, adding $12,000. Kate Anderson has raised $251,000, adding $50,000 since the last reporting period late last month.

District 6 (East San Fernando Valley): Antonio Sanchez has raised $55,000, up by $15,000 since late last month. Maria Cano has raised almost $17,000, a big jump of $8,000 from last month. Monica Ratliff has raised $14,000, adding just $1,000.

Previous posts: Update: Robust Fundraising Numbers for Candidates; Fundraising: Latest Reports Trickling In; January Contribution Reports, Part 2; Outside Spending Tops $2 Million, Grows Negative; Campaign Consultants Win — Either Way

Morning Read: All Eyes on School Board Primary

National Attention and Cash in Los Angeles School Vote Much of the attention will also be on the three races for the school board, a battle that involves the mayor, the teachers’ union and a host of advocates from across the country — including New York City’s billionaire mayor — who have poured millions of dollars into the races. NY Times

Outside Cash Prominent in L.A. School Board Races Outside spending is dominating campaigns for three seats on the Los Angeles Board of Education, surpassing $4.4 million through Friday. LA Times

Profiles of Candidates for Los Angeles Board of Education A brief look at candidates for three L.A. school board seats. LA Times

Tuesday’s Election Could Redefine Los Angeles City Government In an election that will redefine Los Angeles for up to the next eight years, voters on Tuesday will have the rare opportunity to elect three new citywide leaders, plus a majority of the City Council and the board of the Los Angeles Unified School District. Daily Breeze

Election 2013: Reform at Center of LA Unified Race The race for three seats on the LAUSD board has shaped up into a pitched battle for control of the city’s public schools, with reform-minded candidates hoping to maintain the momentum of Superintendent John Deasy and union-backed rivals trying to halt it. LA Daily News

Candidates for Mayor Take Different Tacks on Education Eric Garcetti has the backing of the teachers union and wants to unite the union and reformers. Wendy Greuel wants local decision-making. Jan Perry wants a non-voting seat on the board. LA Times

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Insider Predictions: Two Runoffs & A “Jump Ball”

Predicting the outcome of any political campaign is notoriously difficult — and predicting closely contested School Board races may be especially so.

The turnout is generally low, and the polling is weak.  The majority of voters tend to make up their mind while they’re looking at the ballot, and forget who they’ve voted for 10 minutes later.

Undaunted, LA School Report talked to a few campaign consultants and insiders to try to get a sense of what knowledgeable observers expect to happen when the votes are counted late Tuesday night. The predictions we got — tentative as they were — included a decent chance of runoffs in Districts 2 and 6 and a District 4 race that’s too close to call.

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Morning Read: Will Board Race Motivate Voters?

Races for LA Unified’s School Board Attract Millions; Will They Also Attract Voters?
Based on the media coverage and celebrity endorsements this LAUSD school board election has received, you’d think sitting on the seven-member panel was one of the most glamorous jobs in LA. KPCC

How Outside Spending Is Changing the Race to Represent Northeast San Fernando Valley Schools
Sanchez has been able to hire three paid staff members, had more than a dozen mailers go out on his behalf and was the subject of a commercial that aired during Lakers games. KPCC

Steve Zimmer and Kate Anderson Face off on AirTalk
Both candidates talk about where they stand on Deasy, why Zimmer does not agree with charter school expansion and Anderson is pushing for it, and if teacher evaluations can be tied to student performance.. KPCC

L.A. Unified, Other School Districts Seek New Measures of Success
Nine California school districts, including Los Angeles Unified, will apply to the U.S. Department of Education for relief from rules that, over time, have labeled most schools that receive federal funds as failing, officials announced Thursday. LA Times
See also: LA Daily News

Arne Duncan’s Education ‘Sequester’ Claims Questioned
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has long been seen as an administration asset. But this past week, he’s also been the chief spokesman for the White House claims about the potential impact of sequestration on education jobs. Now those estimates have run afoul of fact-checkers. EdWeek

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