Today’s LA Unified school board meeting may have been brief, but it was just as acrimonious and confusing as some of the longer ones.
While problems contributing to the appearance of dysfunction usually focus on content or process. This one focused on both.
The big issue was over Bennett Kayser’s resolution to expand Title I funding to schools with only 40 percent low-income student population, rather than the current threshold, 50 percent.
As it appeared on the meeting agenda, it was virtually the same as a measure that came before the board two months ago from Tamar Galatzan and Monica Ratliff that was defeated in a 3-3 deadlock, with Kayser abstaining.
“Maybe this is the lawyer in me,” said Galatzan, who was clearly piqued. “But this seems substantially similar to me.”
Other members seemed confused about how the item ended up on the agenda, to start with. The board’s Rule 73 blocks members from initiating a motion that is “substantially similar” to one that has been voted on within the previous six months. That’s meant to promote stability and also prevent the board from repeatedly dealing with the same issues.