LAUSD board approves study of housing homeless students and their families on district properties
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...
By Taylor Swaak | November 13, 2018
LAUSD ends fees for parent volunteers
LA Unified on Tuesday ended the requirement that parents have to pay to volunteer in their children’s schools. The school board voted unanimously to approve a resolution by Superintendent Austin Beutner, who exercised his authority to waive the $56 fee for fingerprinting and background checks. The district will also nearly double — from seven to...
By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | November 13, 2018
LAUSD to consider housing homeless students and their families on district properties
LA Unified is poised to consider using district property to house homeless students and their families. Kelly Gonez, who authored the resolution that’s up for a school board vote Tuesday, said that to her knowledge, this would be a first for the district. The resolution, co-sponsored by Mónica García and Nick Melvoin, would ask Superintendent Austin...
By Taylor Swaak | November 12, 2018
Commentary from LAUSD board member Kelly Gonez: With our investment in dual language programs, ‘Our diversity is our strength’
I was entering elementary school when the Spanish spoken in my home slowly disappeared. Up to that point, my mother, an immigrant from Peru, had taught me both Spanish and English at home. But soon after I began school, the only times Spanish was spoken was during overheard calls with my family members in Peru...
By Kelly Gonez | November 7, 2018
Saturday school and 1,000 Rams tickets — how LAUSD is trying to turn around a stubborn attendance problem
*Updated Oct. 17 LA Unified is continuing to lose about $630 million a year because students aren’t coming to school. So this year, district officials are rethinking strategies and trying new ones, including Saturday school to make up lost days and handing out 1,000 tickets to Los Angeles Rams football games for students with excellent...
By Laura Greanias | October 17, 2018
LAUSD details 15% job cuts in central and local district offices to satisfy its financial overseers
LA Unified will eliminate $43 million in administrative salaries as part of an emergency cost-cutting plan to stave off its fiscal overseers. The cuts won’t be at school sites this year, but rather at the central and local district offices. The number of jobs that will be lost will be left up to each department,...
By Laura Greanias | October 9, 2018
Commentary: An open letter to LAUSD’s board about who gets to speak at meetings
An open letter from Katie Braude, executive director of Speak UP, to President Mónica García, Vice President Nick Melvoin, and members of the board: I am writing to share the collective dismay of parents and community members who attended the board meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 21. In particular, I am writing on behalf of the...
By Katie Braude | August 27, 2018
‘I want my voice heard’ — Showdown in the boardroom as Latino parents balk at an attempt to name a replacement for Ref Rodriguez without their input
*Updated Aug. 23 Families whose children attend schools in LA Unified’s Board District 5, in southeast and northeast Los Angeles, will get to elect a new representative in a special election on March 5. That’s what the school board on Tuesday decided to do with the seat that has been vacant since Ref Rodríguez stepped...
By Esmeralda Fabián Romero | August 23, 2018
LAUSD notifies 1,600 administrators of potential layoffs: Too little, too late or just a mirage?
Nearly 1,600 LA Unified administrators will be notified in mid-March that their contracts may end in June. But is this attempt at bringing administrative staff more in line with the declining number of students too late to help a looming budget deficit, as some school board members fear? Or will there even be a staff reduction?...
By Mike Szymanski | February 21, 2017
Zimmer convinces school board to go for ‘clean money’ elections
Although he’s currently the recipient of campaign cash in what may be the most expensive school board race ever, LA Unified board President Steve Zimmer pushed through a “Clean Money” resolution on Tuesday but said it is not about him. Zimmer convinced his often disparate group of colleagues on the school board to unanimously approve the...
By Mike Szymanski | February 15, 2017