Thursday, October 03, 2013


By Barbara Jones, Los Angeles Daily News |

Posted: 10/02/13, 8:16 PM PDT ::  For the second straight year, the Los Angeles Unified teachers’ union refused to endorse the district’s application for a prestigious federal grant, which officials said would have brought in $30 million to fund counselors and instructional coaches at high-needs middle schools.

Superintendent John Deasy released a statement late Wednesday expressing “deep disappointment” in the decision by United Teachers Los Angeles officials to withhold their support for the Race to the Top grant. The application was due today.

Last year, the U.S. Department of Education rejected the district’s application for a $40 million grant because it lacked the UTLA endorsement it needed to be eligible for consideration. At the time, union leaders said the grant would have cost more to administer than it would have brought in.

UTLA officials did not immediately return requests for comment.

According to the district, this year’s grant would have paid for counselors and advisers for 20,000 students as well as training for teachers and administrators.

“Though this year’s application included even more detail about what positions would be created and what types of professional development would be supported with these funds, if granted, union leadership still refused to sign the application,” Deasy said. “As a result, our grant will not be reviewed and students will be automatically denied the opportunity to benefit from millions of dollars to directly support learning in the classroom.”

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“Prestigious,”  Really?

Einstein apparently never said: “Stupidity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results”  - but that doesn’t make it less true.

  • UTLA’s opposition to the terms for Race to the Top is well documented; hopefully Dr. Deasy and LAUSD didn’t invest a lot of effort, time and the kids’ money preparing this year’s RttT grant – or getting their hopes  too high in budgeting the $30 million they were never going to get.
  • $30 million seems to be the list price for Ed ®eform magic bullets these days – it being the cost for all these iPads that aren’t secure and all the vaporware education content on them. (‘All these iPads’ includes the ones that are missing and/or unaccounted for.)
  • ®eform critic Diane Ravitch, who spoke last night at CSUN and at Oxy Tuesday labels Race to the Top a ‘Hoax” in her remarks and in her new book Reign of Error: The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and the Danger to America’s Public Schools“Race to the Top …was designed in Secretary Duncan’s office with help from consultants from the Gates Foundation, The Broad Foundation, and other advocates of high-stakes testing and charter schools.”

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