Archive for June 2012

HOW TO GET YOUR TEACHER FIRED- DEDICATED TO LAUSD'S SUPERINTENDENT JOHN DEASY

False Witness.jpg
As both George Santayana and Sir Winston Churchill said, "Those who do not learn from their history are doomed to repeat it." While Alex Padilla's Senate Bill 1530, which would have allowed a further erosion of teachers already ignored due process rights, was defeated in committee in Sacramento to the chagrin of Los Angeles Unified School District's (LAUSD) Superintendent John Deasy, the following video is a glimpse into the heart of darkness that Deasy has already empowered in the wake of the Miramonte child abuse scandal, that he continues to shamefully use to attack the vast majority of non-pervert and dedicated teachers, whose only crime is that they are: at the top of the salary scale; about to vest in lifetime health benefits under the rule of 80, which would cost LAUSD another $300,000 in unfunded benefits to add to the already $13 billion they already have; or are just trying to maintain rigorous academic standards for students, who find it easier to denounce their teachers than actually do the work they require. Check out the following video and tell us what you think...if you do.

29

06 2012

THE AMERICAN PEOPLE ARE ANGRY by Senator Bernie Saunders

Bernie Saunders.jpg
If you have 25 minutes to spare, Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Franks lays it out for you in a speech before the U.S. Senate as to what is going on in this country. And as he mentions in the speech, one of the key elements of social equity and the maintenance of the United States as anything that even remotely resembles a democracy is a well funded and high quality public education system, which is of course under attack in a move to privatize it, which gest no coverage in the mainstream media. After watching the video, please feel free to share your comments:.

LAUSD & UTLA: A POSITIVE VISION OF WHAT COULD BE?

One room school house.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) As we at perdaily go into hiatus for the summer to prepare for the next academic year and the litigation it will bring to hopefully redress the longstanding yet clearly avoidable failure of LAUSD and their facilitators at United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA), I thought I would end this year on a positive note by giving you a description of what a public education system that might just work would look like. It is my contention that all factions be they administrative, certificated, classified, students, parents, and the union would have a much, dare I say happier and more productive, less depressing time of it, if the real implemented excellence of public education was pursued in something more than mere rhetoric.

19

06 2012

AN ANALYSIS OF THE 2012-13 JOBS AND SERVICES RESTORATION AGREEMENT BETWEEN LAUSD AND UTLA By Dr. John Fernandez

Dr. John Fernandez.jpg
Not only is the Agreement misleading, tentative, and conditional, the Agreement fails to support the claim that 4,149 jobs will be restored and does not give an exact number of all pending Reduction in Forces (RIFS) and job loses that will take place after June 30, 2012. For instance on page 4 of the Agreement, Section 5a, the subheading states: "Total Estimated FTE Position Restorations is 4,149." Thus, the 4,149 is an estimate and not an absolute number.

18

06 2012

LAUSD: WHAT'S THE ANSWER? HELL, WHAT'S THE QUESTION?

tea and cookies.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) My problems with the Los Angeles Unified School District started when I was 8 years old and had the misfortune of having Mrs. Arthur as my 3rd grade teacher at Laurel Elementary School. Like all children prior to being cowered and anesthetized by the mindless repetition of most LAUSD classrooms, I was on fire with the desire to learn. The more I learned, the more I wanted to learn. I would inhale assignments and always give more than the minimum, which in retrospect was problematic for Queen Arthur, which is what we called our 3rd grade teacher. She would sit in the back of the class and stuff her face with sandwiches, cookies, tea, and anything else she could get her hands on, while being waited on by the cutest little girls in the class, who attended to her every need. The rest of us students would be given one tedious worksheet after another to monotonously consume as much time as possible, so that Queen Arthur would not have to attempt the arduous task of actually getting up from her throne...I mean desk.

14

06 2012

LAUSD'S BOY - STATE SENATOR ALEX PADILLA AND SB 1530

Alex Padilla1.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) Now State Senator Alex Padilla decides to throw a little gasoline on the arson fire set by Superintendent Deasy in his crusades to get rid of as many teachers as possible by proposing Assembly Bill (AB) 1530. If passed, the results for teachers and public education would be nothing short of catastrophic.

13

06 2012

UTLA/LAUSD Tentative Agreement: WHY WE'RE VOTING NO By Area Chairs Aaron Bruhnke, Jose Lara, Dan Barnhart, and Gillian Russom

UTLA IMAGE.jpeg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) (Perdaily salutes the intelligence of the teachers who wrote this - take heed or continue to suffer the consequences) We cannot support this Tentative Agreement, because doing so would mean endorsing a process that accepts huge concessions without an organized fight, and feeds the RIF cycle that has destabilized our schools for four years. We are voting "No" because:

12

06 2012

LAUSD: COURT TO RULE IF STULL CAN BE USED TO SCAPEGOAT GOOD TEACHERS

Think.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) According to a recent Los Angeles TImes article, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge James C. Chalfant will rule today on requiring the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) to use student test scores in teacher STULL evaluations, which are supposed to determine if the teacher is doing a good job or should be placed in a category of teachers ultimately facing dismissal. LAUSD, specifically this case engage in the post hoc fallacy when they try to scapegoat teachers for the failure of students simply based on the fact that they were in the teacher's class and, therefore, the teacher must be responsible if they are now failing.

11

06 2012

LAUSD'S IMPERIAL NOTION OF LAW- WHOSE RIGHTS ARE THEY ANYWAY?

Divine right of kings.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) As I have tried to point out in recent perdaily posts, the major way in which the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) has successfully gotten rid of thousand of teachers is by getting them to buy into allowing LAUSD to define what is going on and who has what rights. I call this framing the conversation, which as of this writing, LAUSD continues to do successfully in virtually all the cases it has brought against teachers. In order to hopefully turn this around in the future, let me go through just some of the false assumptions LAUSD administration gets teachers to buy into, which predictably continues to cause them to lose their jobs.

8

06 2012

LAUSD'S HUMAN RESOURCES HEAD VIVIAN EKCHIAN IN MY MEMORY

Vivian Ekchian.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) Since the regrettable Miramonte child molestion scandal, the numbers of teachers that the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) is targeting, harassing, and summarily removing on bogus charges has exploded as Superintendent John Deasy and others in charge at LAUSD try to use this administratively allowed scandal as a pretext for removing as many high priced teachers as possible. This has created a culture of fear at LAUSD where t\hose attacked tend to allow LAUSD to frame the conversation in trying to defend themselves against these bogus charges. This is a big mistake.

7

06 2012

THE INSULAR CULTURE OF LAUSD IS ANTITHETICAL TO EXCELLENT PUBLIC EDUCATION

Insularity.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) Today I went to speak before the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board of Directors before they were scheduled to go into closed session to deal again with the Scot Graham - ex-Superintendent Ramon Cortines alleged sexual harassment issue that the LAUSD Board voted 4-3 in a previous session several weeks ago to pay Graham a $200,000 settlement and $250,000 worth of lifetime health benefits. This prior clandestine action of the Board unwound because it flew in the face of the public notice requirements of the Brown Act. In addition, the fact that the Board "outed" Mr. Graham caused his attorneys to balk at the proposed settlement offer.

6

06 2012

SCOTT GRAHAM VS. RAMON CORTINES REVISITED BY LAUSD

LAUSD Board.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) "If at first you don't succeed, try, try, again" This seems to have become the motto of the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board of Directors. Two weeks ago in a clandestine yet well orchestrated proceeding that only certain reporters were initially made aware of, the LAUSD Board attempted to settle potential legal liability for the alleged sexual harassment of LAUSD Director of Leasing and Asset Management Scot Graham by then Superintendent Ramon Cortines As we pointed out at the time, there were certain legal and logical problems with the Board's misguided and poorly executed attempt. Tomorrow, Tuesday, June 5, 2012 at their 10 a.m. meeting., the LAUSD Board is going to try and take a second shot at putting this situation to bed, although considering the charges, maybe that is not the best metaphor to use.

4

06 2012

IS LAUSD LIABLE FOR EX-SUPERINTENDENT RAMON CORTINES' "ROMANTIC" ADVENTURES? (VIDEO #10)

Ramon Cortines4.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) In the law there is the notion of respondeat superior, which basically holds the employer responsible for the acts of their employee performed during the course of performing their duties as an employee. Since LAUSD has reasonably already attempted to stop sexual harassment to the best of its ability by already mandating sexual harassment training for all its employees, it would seem that it has not only fulfilled its duty as employer, but also shifted the duty not to sexually harass to ex-Superintendent Ramon Cortines. What more could LAUSD have been reasonably required to do to avoid legal liability and shift it to Cortines who was not only charged with enforcing District sexual harassment policy and training, but one must also reasonably assume took the training himself and then subsequent allegedly ignored it by sexually harassing Mr. Graham. Under these circumstances, it would seem that LAUSD would be well within its rights to strip Mr. Cortines of his employee benefits for gross dereliction of duty, while he was superintendent of LAUSD. After all, isn't that what they are doing to teachers with no evidence at all of malfeasance?

1

06 2012