LAUSD Regular Board Meeting Nov. 14

Highlights on the agenda include two resolutions up for a vote: the creation of a District phone app for parents and a call for increases in per-pupil funding.

Introduced by Board Vice President Nick Melvoin (BD4) last month, and co-sponsored by Board President Monica Garcia (BD2) and Board member Richard Vladovic (BD7), the Transforming Engagement via Communication Hubs (TECH) resolution will seek approval for the creation of a phone app designed to give parents easy and instant access to Board, district and school information and provide a simple avenue for parental feedback.  The goal of the app would be to reach a wider group of district parents – particularly those who may not have landlines, computers or broadband services at home. Current methods rely largely on website postings, in-person meetings, phone calls and paper documents. The app also could be used to access student test scores, attendance records, grades and graduation process and special education documentation

Also up for a vote is a resolution sponsored by Board member Kelly Gonez (BD6), which is co-sponsored by Board Member George McKenna (BD1) and Melvoin, directing the superintendent and District staff to ask the state to increase per-pupil funding to $20,000 by 2020 and $25,000 by 2022. In 2017, California was ranked 47th at just $7,571 spent per student, trailing the national average by nearly $2,500. 

The resolution argues that a funding increase would allow the District to “significantly lower counselor-to-student ratios, reduce class sizes to 24 on average, add four additional trainings per teacher, employ a full-time nurse at every school, expand transitional kindergarten programs to all elementary schools and provide high quality arts education for every child at every school.” If passed, the Board would join United Teachers Los Angeles in calling for funding increases and advocate signing open letters to the State Legislature, holding an advocacy day in Sacramento, spearheading a targeted media campaign coordinated with the Governor’s budget release in January, and actively identifying potential sponsors for future legislation.

Other items on Tuesday’s agenda include voting on potential rules changes regarding public comments and speaker time limits, granting P.E. credit for Junior ROTC courses, recommending funding for anti-tobacco programs and the designation of City of Angels, Thomas Riley High School and Youth Opportunities Unlimited as alternative schools based on California Department of Education criteria.

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LAUSD Special Board Meeting Nov. 7: Charters

Thirty Four charter schools have petitions up for renewal or approval Tuesday. Eleven charter renewals and three new charter school petitions are commended for denial. Schools from Alliance and Magnolia, STEM Prep and Equitas Academy are among those recommended for denial. Several KIPP schools are recommended for approval but only with benchmarks the organization finds unacceptable.

Fifteen other charter schools have public hearings for petitions that will be voted on at next month's meeting. The entire agenda can be viewed here.

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LAUSD Special Board Meeting Agenda: Oct. 24

The Board will conduct a "deep dive" study session on wanding, the practice of conducting daily, random student searches with hand-held metal detectors, which has been LAUSD policy since 1994. Some charter organizations, civil rights groups and United Teachers Los Angeles have questioned the policy, but many parents still support it.

The Los Angeles School Police Department Chief Steven Zipperman will update the Board on critical weapons incidents on campus. District officials will also provide a history of and legal basis for the procedure, a presentation of current weapon statistics and a review of parent and student survey feedback about the policy. The Students Not Suspects Campaign, which opposes wanding, will also present suggestions for alternatives to wanding. The entire agenda can be read here.

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Committee of the Whole Meeting Oct. 17

Board members will discuss barriers and opportunities for improving student outcomes among English Learners at the Committee of the Whole meeting at Fairfax High.

Below are some of the speakers and topics:

* Chief Academic Officer Frances Gipson: Advancing Proficiency for English Learners

* Hilda Maldonado Executive Director Multilingual and Multicultural Education Department: Goals and Initiatives

* Chris Mason Expert, EL Elementary Instruction, MMED:  English Language Proficiency Assessments of California

* Mara Bommarito Director, MMED: Expanding Dual Language Program - Proposition 58

Click here for the entire agenda.


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LAUSD Regular Board Meeting Oct. 10

The superintendent is presenting a budget update showing that its enrollment estimates were too optimistic. Enrollment has dropped 2.51 percent instead of 2.1 percent, meaning there will be $17 million less in the 2018-19 budget and $18 million less in the 2019-20 budget than projected.

LAUSD Board Vice President Nick Melvoin (BD4) also plans to introduce a resolution at the board meeting Tuesday directing the district to create a new app to better help parents access information about LAUSD and communicate their needs to the district.

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LAUSD Special Board Meeting Oct. 3: Charters

The LAUSD board will vote on four charter school renewal petitions, including one for Lashon Academy in Van Nuys, which is recommended for denial. Three other charters are recommended for approval: Alain LeRoy Locke College Preparatory Academy, New Los Angeles Charter School and Oscar De La Hoya Ánimo Charter High. The board will also hold public hearings on 34 charter school petitions that will be voted on next month.

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LAUSD Board Meeting Agenda: Sept. 12

1.   Board Members Ref Rodriguez, Nick Melvoin Kelly Gonez and Monica Garcia have introduced a resolution supporting passage of a U. S. House bill called the IDEA Full Funding Act, which calls on the federal government to fully fund its promised portion of required services for kids with disabilities.  

2. District 6 Board Member Kelly Gonez, District 1 Board Member George McKenna and District 7 Board member Richard Vladovic are sponsoring a resolution to make LAUSD’s graduation rates more meaningful by tracking whether graduates are prepared for college, careers and life after they leave LAUSD schools. 

3. Board member Monica Garcia has introduced a resolution to support passage of a state bill, AB AB 621, that would create a summer bridge fund to help classified employees who have summers off and often suffer during those months without income. The median income for classified employees in the state is just over $20,000. The bill would create a partially self-funded account allowing classified employees to contribute a small portion of their paychecks that would be matched by the state.

4. Charter material revisions and renewal petitions will be considered for several Celerity, ICEF and Synergy Kinetic Academy Schools.


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LAUSD Board Meeting Agenda: Aug. 22

Highlights of the agenda for the Aug. 22 LAUSD Board meeting:

1. District 1 Board Member George McKenna and District 3 Board Member Scott Schmerelson have introduced a resolution stating their opposition to AB 1217, a bill that would create an innovative new state-authorized STEM middle and high school in Los Angeles, operated in partnership with UCLA.

 2.  The board is considering a revised board meeting schedule that would increase the number of meetings and narrow the focus to a specific topic.

3. Eight charter petitions are being considered.

Coming up Sept. 12:

1. District 6 Board Member Kelly Gonez is introducing a resolution to make LAUSD’s graduation rates more meaningful by tracking whether graduates are prepared for college, careers and life after they leave LAUSD schools.  

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