Wednesday, December 19, 2007

A Momentous Event?

Following is the text of notice sent to parents and teachers at Hollenbeck Middle School re the elections to join the Mayor's Partnership. Similar notices were sent out to teachers and parents at the other schools involved in the Mayor's Partnership and The Loyola Marymount Family of Schools partnersh

There are outstanding challenges from the Teachers Union on the election- see (LA Times L.A. Unified chief makes headway on two contentious fronts) - there are very real issues about the entire election process and also the parent's vote.

Read the following and tell me where the neutral objective non-partisanship required of an election administrator is?

We are told what a YES vote means, but not what a NO vote means— neither in the cold calculating language of a legislative analyst nor in the point/counterpoint of Argument-for/Argument-against//Rebuttal-for/Rebuttal-against.

"VOTE TO TRANSFORM OUR SCHOOLS" seems like advocacy to me

"A momentous event…." looks to be a bit of the old cheerleading.

…and the election was conducted by the I-Division - the folks who would stand to gain from an affirmative vote - who also formulated the rules for the election and then conducted it.

The parent election was supposed to be conducted under the rules for conducting School Site Council and School Based Management elections - which require a one week notice of the elections and that the elections be conducted by trained local district staff.

But it has been alleged that that the notices were not circulated to Hollenbeck parents until ONE DAY before the election! The above flier and the election rules were not even put in final form until 9:48 PM on December 6th according to the time and date of the documents - 4 days and 11 hours before the election.

And no parents were involved in creating the election rules - although, from the quotes in the Times article above - the Mayor's office certainly was!

If as the Times says, "The mayor's office endorsed the idea of additional voting" - Let's go there!

As a a matter of fact, let's go there anyway!

- smf


Special School Election

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Vote at Hollenbeck Middle School

A momentous event will take place on Tuesday, December 11, 2007 that will impact the future of Hollenbeck Middle School. On that day, LAUSD will hold a vote at your school to decide whether or not the school should become part of the Innovation Division in partnership with the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools.

I hope that you have had a chance to attend one of our informational meetings to learn more about the Innovation Division and the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools. The Innovation Division is a key initiative of Superintendent David L. Brewer III and the Board of Education intended to move decisions about how a school is run and how children are taught as close to the classroom as possible. The Partnership for Los Angeles Schools is an effort launched by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa with a broad collaboration of partners to provide more resources and support for our schools.

If you have not had the chance to learn about this exciting opportunity to make a significant difference in your workplace, please see the attached key points.

Voting will take place at your school on December 11, 2007 from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

The Innovation Division is looking for the following indicators of support:

1. 50% +1 of certificated staff in the UTLA bargaining agreement votes

2. 50% +1 of parent (or legal guardian) votes

3. Letters of support/petitions from:

a. Classified Staff

b. School Administrators and management

c. Community groups, parents and community members

d. Students

If you cannot vote on December 11 and would like an absentee ballot, please call

(213) 893-6831 no later than Monday, December 10, 2007 at 6 p.m.

Please call (213) 893-6831 if you have further questions.

We owe it to our children to vote on December 11!


1. Hollenbeck Middle School will become an Innovation Division School working with the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools in the 2008-09 school year.

2. Schools will set their own governance structures with parents, students, teachers, classified staff and administrative staff.

3. School will have more authority over decisions related to:

- School budget

- School hiring

- Instruction

- Professional development

- School operations and services

4. The Innovation Division and the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools will work to bring additional resources to the school.

5. The school would be exempt from certain LAUSD policies.

6. The school would follow Federal and State Regulations, as well as existing collective bargaining agreements.


YOUR VOTE COUNTS! Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Are you in favor of Hollenbeck Middle School becoming an Innovation Division School in partnership with the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools in the 2008-09 school year?


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