Posted on October 18, 2013 :: A coalition of community groups known by the acronym, CLASS, finally had a meeting today with LA Unified Board President Richard Vladovic.
<<Ryan Smith of United Way
The groups’ mission was to press the case for individual schools, rather than district administrators, deciding how to spend money coming into LA Unified from Gov. Jerry Brown‘s new Local Control Funding Formula, with a particular focus on supporting underserved students — English learners, children from foster homes and students from low-income families.
“The meeting was productive and we look forward to ongoing meetings,” Ryan Smith of the United Way of Greater Los Angeles said in an email. “We are also pleased that the Board President has agreed to a January meeting with the 50 organizations in the CLASS partner network regarding LCFF.”
Smith said representatives from the eight founding groups of CLASS – Communities for Los Angeles School Success – spent about an hour with Vladovic at his downtown office. The representatives were from Community Coalition, InnerCity Struggle, Educators4Excellence, Teach Plus Los Angeles, the Urban League, Families in Schools and the Alliance for a Better Community.
The meeting came as a public debate is underway within the district over a spending plan for the 2014-2015 academic year. The budget is about $7 billion, which includes about $230 million in LCFF revenue, generated by Prop 30 taxes. District officials and school board members have held meetings in recent weeks with students, union officials and members of school communities.
Vladovic agreed two weeks to schedule a meeting with CLASS representatives. Smith contended that earlier, the board president had ignored the coalition’s request to meet.
A message seeking comment from Vladovic was not immediately returned.
CAVEAT: First: When you read a article without a byline it’s pretty safe to assume that it is – or was adapted from – a press release. Or that it’s an editorial expressing the opinion of the publication's ownership. Or both.
Second: CLASS is a coalition of ®eform oriented astroturf (as-opposed-to-grass-roots) community groups closely aligned with former Mayor Tony, Superintendent Deasy, Monica Garcia and The Broad/Gates/Riordan/Walton Philanthropies - the folks Diane Ravitch warns us about. CLASS is the new name for the Coalition for School Reform formed to finance Mayor Tony’s ®eform School Board Slate which once included Dr. Vladovic and Steve Zimmer. It’s the same old book with a new dust jacket.
LA School Report was at that time the communications instrument of the Coalition.
Dr V. and Mr. Zimmer and the LA School Report have asserted varying levels of independence over time – as may CLASS. But old habits die hard - especially as the money comes from the same sou®ces.
Quote: “Smith said representatives from the eight founding groups of CLASS – Communities for Los Angeles School Success…..” The CLASS/United Way website lists nine founding groups – the missing one is the Office of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.