Archive for September 2013

LAUSD BOARD PRESIDENT VLADOVIC ADMITS TO ONE-SIDED TEACHER DISMISSAL PROCESS

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) On Wednesday, September 25, 2013 at a UTLA South Area meeting at Stephen White Middle School, newly elected Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board President Dr. Richard Vladovic admitted that until his recent election as Board President (replacing Monica Garcia) LAUSD Board members never were given the opportunity to consider teachers' statements or any other exculpatory evidence in teacher dismissal proceedings brought by LAUSD administration before the Board. Dr. Vladovic openly speculated that this one-sided process could have violated the due process rights of teachers facing dismissal before the Board in a procedure that held their professional careers in the balance.

LAUSD- NO COMMON CORE WITHOUT COMMON SENSE

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) For a change, let me suspend my disbelief and assume that Superintendent John Deasy and those running the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) and other underachieving school districts like it around the country are actually interested in turning things around in terms of academic achievement by the implementation of Common Core Standards. Of course, this requires the assumption that they are not just doing it to get their share of $4.35 billion of Race to the Top federal funds they stand to get if they adopt "college-and-career ready standards." In order to succeed with Common Core, they will have to be willing to implement some of these very same Common Core critical thinking standards, instead of blindly implementing Common Core form and not content as if the subjective reality of LAUSD's presently failed student population could be ignored to avoid the truly difficult work of making Common Core work.

23

09 2013

LAUSD AS PRESENTLY CONSTITUTED HAS TO GO

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) as presently constituted has to go. After generations of squandering the potential and destroying the lives of its predominant poor and minority student populations, those opposed to it have to finally understand that even hiring the best people to work at LAUSD as presently constituted is an exercise in futility for those of us who want real and quantifiable change and not mere disingenuous rhetoric in public education. When the United States went into Germany and Japan after the Second World War, it did not leave the Nazis in power or their militarist counterpart in Japan to run things, rather it set up a democratic from the bottom up governance, where those at the top could no longer coerce, while sabotaging real change. Such a Marshal Plan at LAUSD that centered the power of public education in the classroom and the individual school could achieve the same success that Finland and other countries have attained, where excellence and not money is allowed to be the primary motivator of public education.

16

09 2013

15 REASONS REFORMERS ARE LOOKING TO FINLAND - CLEARLY LAUSD IS NOT

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) Thirty years ago, Finland's education system was in the same sorry state that America's is today. It was mediocre and inequitable and relied on many of the same measures of success that we use here, like standardized testing and teacher tracking. Teachers had varying degrees of education and students didn't have access to equal education resources. They've managed to change all of that in just a few decades. Regardless of whether the U.S. can import some of what makes Finland's schools so successful, they can get hope from the rapid changes to the Finnish education system that show the true and lasting impact smart reforms can have on a country's educational potential.

10

09 2013

IDEAS THAT CAN GET YOU LABELED A RACIST AT LAUSD

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The very notion of rich or white superiority is negated by a public education system designed to assure that a vast segment of our population will never be able to contribute to the well being of our society, but rather will remain a costly (though easily-avoidable) burden on all of society. This is not smart or in the true self-interest of those presently running the show. If we just allowed public schools to do what they do best and have easily done in the past with other immigrant populations, we will all be the better for it -- and the Chinese will not eat our lunch.

9

09 2013

UTLA ACCUSES LAUSD OF RETALIATING AGAINST TEACHERS- WHO KNEW?

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) In a performance reminiscent of Claude Raines in Casablanca, United Teacher Los Angeles (UTLA) President Warren Fletcher came out today on KNX News Radio and seemed "SHOCKED." " When LAUSD maintains a culture in which teachers are afraid to speak up, where people feel cowed, UTLA has to step up to the plate. UTLA has to use whatever resources we have, whatever legal authority we have, to reverse that." Are we supposed to believe that Fletcher was surprised to find out that retaliation has been going on here at the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), when literally thousands of teachers have already been hounded out of the teaching profession by Superintendent Deasy and his morally challenged predecessor Ramon "Snuggles" Cortines?

6

09 2013

LAUSD "RUBBER ROOM" TEACHERS MEET AT UTLA

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) Last Wednesday, August 28th, housed teachers came together at the United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) to finally try and address their targeting by the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Upon arriving at UTLA to attend this meeting I had been invited to, I was told that I was on a security list that barred my entry into the building. This is probably due to the fact that I am in the process of suing UTLA and their attorneys at Trygstad, Schwab & Trygstad for doing worse than nothing to stop the coordinated attack on the teachers they are paid by teachers' dues to defend. After some intervention on my behalf, I was finally allowed in, but only go up to the 9th floor to attend the meetings. I was told never to go to the UTLA office.

4

09 2013

WHAT GETS YOU ACCLAIM IN PRIVATE SCHOOLS GETS YOU FIRED AT LAUSD

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) During the last several weeks my phone has been ringing off the hook with calls from teachers being targeted for removal as the new school year starts at the Los Angeles Unified School Disrict (LAUSD). After a 3 month hiatus where the LAUSD Board has not been able to dismiss teachers, Deasy & Co. are gearing up for another year of removing teachers to save the district money by falsely accusing them of fireable acts on the road to breaking the union and privatizing public education. This is a phenomenon that is going on all over the country in a well orchestrated program that somehow never makes it into the mainstream media. While being at the top of the salary scale or about to vest in lifetime health benefits has been a sure fire indicator of those being targeted in the past, it seems there is an even more common indicator for teachers in the District's sights - being intelligent, dedicated, and an uncompromisingly good teacher. These teachers are viewed as a threat to maintaining a racist status quo of longstanding mediocre at LAUSD, where only the rhetoric changes and the teaching of critical thinking skills is seen as a threat to those in power that must be stamped out at any cost.

2

09 2013