Federal program makes sure students won’t go hungry over summer
Students who depend on eating at school for their one — and sometimes only — meal of the day will be able to more easily find a location for free meals during the summer. The expansion of the federal Summer Food Service Program will provide more meals to children and teens 18 years and younger...
By Mike Szymanski | May 27, 2016
LAUSD administrative staff jumps 22 percent even as enrollment drops
Despite projected budget deficits reaching nearly half a billion dollars and steep enrollment declines, LA Unified’s certified administrative staff has increased 22 percent in the last five years, according to a superintendent’s report. The number of teachers has dropped 9 percent in the same period. And teachers and certified staff are aging toward retirement, heading toward...
By Mike Szymanski | May 18, 2016
How LAUSD plans to dodge its financial crisis: boost enrollment but not cut staff
*UPDATE With LA Unified heading toward financial crisis within three years, Superintendent Michelle King on Tuesday kicked off a series of special board meetings to detail her plans for fiscal solvency. Topping that list is keeping kids in the district. Notably absent was cutting staff. King’s initiatives would initially cost the district — roughly $20 million. But the...
By Mike Szymanski | March 30, 2016
A recipe for teaching from LAUSD board member George McKenna, who’s been at it 55 years
George McKenna is going into his 55th year as an educator, and he has a lot to say about it. In fact, he declares: “Give me a school that’s supposedly poor-performing for three years and I guarantee you no charter school would be able to snatch any kids from that school, and no kids will...
By Mike Szymanski | March 28, 2016
Easy funding source for schools gets complicated
Neighborhood councils in Los Angeles have served as easy and reliable sources of funds for public schools. The councils have $37,000 a year to dole out to the community, and many have set aside a portion of their budgets specifically for schools. But recently some of the councils have learned of a restriction that would tie their hands in...
By Mike Szymanski | March 22, 2016
More concussions reported among LAUSD athletes, but also better monitoring
Rising concussion numbers have spurred LA Unified to examine how to better monitor head injuries and ensure the safety of student athletes. “I love football,” said board member Richard Vladovic, who noted that this week the NFL for the first time recognized a link between football and brain disorders. “But I’m very concerned about long-term effects on...
By Mike Szymanski | March 17, 2016