Wednesday, August 05, 2009


editorial| La Opinión

2009-08-05 -- The poor academic performance results in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) require creativity to capitalize on the resources available, for the benefit of the students. On August 25, the School Board will have an opportunity to approve one of these innovations.

On that day, the Board will vote on a proposal by Vice President Yolie Flores Aguilar to allow entities other than LAUSD to run the next 50 schools that will open up starting in 2010. The measure proposes a bidding process to run the schools as they are inaugurated, so that charter schools, parents and teachers associations, unions, universities and school staff are able to compete.

This is a good idea that requires several steps to achieve the goal. For example, bidders should submit a creative and demanding curriculum, a plan for school security and proposals for extracurricular activities. Obviously, transparency in the process is crucial.

There are nearly 150 charter schools in Los Angeles, which are very popular among parents. We believe that good supervision will be necessary if these schools are to expand –as proposed by Flores Aguilar—to ensure they achieve their goal.

The teachers’ union, the main opponent to the plan, should review its strategy to see how to be inserted in those changes. The status quo is not an option.

We hope that in the days left before the vote the Board will brush up the proposal and the process to dissipate any doubts. The current state of the LAUSD requires new ideas and energy, such as those in Flores Aguilar’s proposal. Students deserve this opportunity for change.

smf’s 2c: for reasons previously stated, 4LAKids respectfully disagrees. With the exception of the Santee HS – which unfortunately opened on a Concept 6 year-‘round calendar – and some opening hiccups – generally the new schools opened by LAUSD have performed admirably.

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