Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Letters to the Editor: LAUSD’S KINGDOM

letters to the Daily News

Re "LAUSD board cuts back on public input" (Editorial, Sept. 24):

Isn't it amazing that those who supposedly serve us seem only to be able to find ways of cutting expenses by cutting at the bottom where it will do the most harm? Never in their wildest dreams do they ever look around their own kingdoms.

In case you've never been to LAUSD headquarters downtown at the Beaudry building, it is an eye-opener! Each floor is a virtual "sea" of desks and new computers in dozens and dozens of "feel-good" departments with hundreds of people milling around in air-conditioned comfort.

This has got to stop. The powers that be are acting like dictators, living the high-life while turning California into a third-world country. When will enough be enough?


West Hills

Hardly underperforming

Re "Valley middle school on list for takeover" (Sept. 26):

San Fernando Middle School's scores have been rising steadily over the past four years. Last year they went up 36 points. This year they dropped a mere three points. Thus, over the course of the past two years San Fernando's scores have risen 33 points!

This is hardly an underperforming school. However, political expediency coupled with lazy, sensationalistic journalism has produced a bastardized picture of the true accomplishments happening at this school. I challenge anyone, especially the members of the media, the school board, or the debutantes from the state and federal departments of Education, to visit San Fernando Middle School - at any time, on any day. They will see unbelievably talented and hardworking staff, teachers and students. Unfortunately, such a visit could take some actual time and thought, which may not be conducive to 10-second sound bites, attention-grabbing headlines or political agendas.


San Fernando

The letter writer is the gifted coordinator at San Fernando Middle School

smf: Mr. Koch descibes a situation where the noodles in the alphabet soup don’t align. The school’s API has gone up, but they’ve made their AYP in 0nly 9 of 21 criteria (you need all 21 to exit PI). 


The Scorecard for the Soup
  • API: Academic Performance Index; The California standard.
  • AYP: Annual Yearly Progress,:the NCLB/Title One standard  (isn't “Annual Yearly redundant?)
  • PI: Program Improvement.
  • NCLB: No Child’s Left Behind.
  • CTE: California Dept of Ed, keeper of the API flame
  • USDE: US Dept of Ed – the Title 1, NCLB torch bearers, Keepers als of the Race to the Top stimulus $ – California need not apply


CTE may be pleased wit SFMS;s progress, but NCLB isn’t. PI status is the result. In most states middle schools aren’t even subject to PI and NCLB, but CA needs the Title I money – so we subject ourselves to the NCLB Police. And takeover by outside operators.

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