‘The data is miserable’: LAUSD board members rake academic officer over the coals for ‘crisis’ in test scores
LA Unified’s chief academic officer came before board members Tuesday with an upbeat-titled report called “Breaking Our Own Records,” but instead of resting on the improvement in overall test scores, the four school board members in attendance grilled her for nearly two hours throwing out terms like “frustrating,” “depressing” and “disappointing” and saying the district is...
By Mike Szymanski | September 13, 2016
More money sought for after-school programs
Members of the LA Unified School Board and the Los Angeles City Council joined last week with after-school program supporters, families and students to call for an increase in state funds. About 75 people gathered Friday outside L.A. City Hall in support of a resolution authored by City Council member David Ryu, chair of the...
By LA School Report | March 22, 2016
Charter operators say district has turned up the heat
*UPDATED A number of charter school operators across LA Unified say the district and its school board are turning up the heat on them to an unbearable degree while using the Charter Schools Division and Office of Inspector General to make approval and renewals of charter schools increasingly difficult. They claim there has been an increase...
By Craig Clough | February 9, 2016
Parent leaders trying to engage with LAUSD meet with frustration
Parents representing some of the most important advisory committees to the LA Unified school board lodged a litany of complaints this week about a lack of connection with the district. Long distances to meetings, inconvenient times, police intimidation near meeting sites and a lack of consideration of the parents’ advice were some of the complaints brought...
By Mike Szymanski | February 5, 2016
A closed campus sparks LAUSD debate over enrollment decline
If members of the LA Unified school board agree on anything, it’s the financial threat posed by declining enrollment. The latest evidence: a 7-0 vote last week to oppose the Great Public Schools Now charter expansion plan. But what to do about enrollment, which is falling about three percent a year, is another matter, the difficulties...
By Craig Clough | January 19, 2016
LAUSD kicks off new effort to help ‘hormones with arms and legs’
With middle school principals’ sharing their best practices and dire needs, an LA Unified board committee yesterday set off on a new initiative to improve the academic and social skills of students one principal described as “hormones with arms and legs.” The discussion in the Curriculum, Instruction and Educational Equity Committee came two days after...
By Mike Szymanski | January 15, 2016
LA Unified board approves school calendar but only for one year
The LA Unified school board spent more than an hour last night, debating dates for the next three academic calendar years. Ultimately, the members decided to keep the schedule similar to this year’s — starting in mid-August with three weeks of winter break — but only for one year. The plan passed on a 5-2...
By Mike Szymanski | January 13, 2016
Charter advocates launch salvo against Schmerelson resolution
Charter school administrators, alumni and parents appeared today at a morning meeting of the LA Unified school to oppose a resolution that will ask the board to condemn any threat to the school system through a proliferation of charter schools. “Resolutions like this distract us and are perpetuating harmful myths in the community,” Rachel Hazlehurst,...
By Mike Szymanski | January 12, 2016
‘Difficult conversation’ on charters finally comes to LAUSD board
After three revisions, a resolution aimed at curtailing future charter school expansion in LA Unified is finally coming before the school board for a vote on Tuesday. While the measure is largely symbolic in that it cannot change policy regarding charter growth — that is a state matter — it’s a way to open a “difficult conversation...
By Mike Szymanski | January 8, 2016
LAUSD explores building 2 schools in Valley, holding off charters
*UPDATED LA Unified is exploring building two new schools in the western San Fernando Valley on the sites of two campuses that have been vacant for decades at a potential cost of tens of millions. The move comes as the district has no current plans for any new schools and would need to spend an...
By Craig Clough | December 10, 2015