Sunday, November 29, 2009

Choice: Thankful, ungrateful …or a turkey sandwich?

4LAKids: Sunday 29•Nov•2009
In This Issue:
LAUSD TO HALVE ITS LOCAL OFFICES: Even with closing local centers, deficit and thousands of layoffs still loom for coming year
L.A. UNIFIED SCHOOL CHOICES ARE A CONFUSING MAZE: Fairs and websites try to help parents, but deciphering magnets, points and charters within the dist
BUDGET CUTS HIT BROAD SWATH OF CAL STATE: The effects are rippling through the university system, touching students, teachers and administrators alike
HIGHLIGHTS, LOWLIGHTS & THE NEWS THAT DOESN'T FIT: The Rest of the Stories from Other Sources
EVENTS: Coming up next week...
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“The power of accurate observation,” Shaw tells us, “is called cynicism by those who have not got it.”

VIEWED THROUGH THAT LENS it isn't always easy to be thankful. Even in this last week of November – tempered with overdoses of turkey-induced tryptophan and washed down with lashings of Beaujolais nouveau. Though the three-day-work week and the four-day weekend helps.

We are thankful…

• ...for the education professionals that make this District what it is— a place for children to grow and learn. We hear too much chin music about how hard it is to get rid of a few bad teachers and administrators -- and not near enough about how to honor the many, many good ones.
• ...for the staff at school sites and in district offices who support that work with enthusiasm, hard work and a smile, whether in the classroom or far from it.
• ...for school nurses, spread too thin and asked too-much-of; often the only health professionals ever seen by students.
• ...for the folks who are building and rebuilding our schools.
• ...for the volunteers who volunteer in the classroom and on the playground before and after school.
• ...for Bruce Kravets.
• ...for the buyers of books at the book fair, and gift wrap and entertainment books and candy and bake sale items; tickets to school play and football and basketball games; for the writers of checks.
• …to the folks who go to the meetings.
• ...for consultants and contract professionals who bring and share their expertise.
• ...for the community members, voters and taxpayers who understand that schools do the most important work in the community - and who vote for the bonds and pay the taxes.
• ...for the parents who struggle to put food on the table … and even more with the algebra homework.
• the motorist who slows in the school zone.
• ...for teachers who give 100% of themselves and then some of their paycheck for supplies.
• ...for the students who work hard and make us proud.

For these things we are eternally thankful, but because of absences of fiscal wherewithal and leadership at the top we undoubtedly appear ungrateful.

“The gruel was served out; and a long grace was said over the short commons. The gruel disappeared; the boys whispered each other, and winked at Oliver; while his next neighbours nudged him. Child as he was, he was desperate with hunger, and reckless with misery. He rose from the table; and advancing to the master, basin and spoon in hand, said: somewhat alarmed at his own temerity:

“'Please, sir, I want some more.'

“The master was a fat, healthy man; but he turned very pale. He gazed in stupified astonishment on the small rebel for some seconds, and then clung for support to the copper. The assistants were paralysed with wonder; the boys with fear.

“'What!' said the master at length, in a faint voice.

“'Please, sir,' replied Oliver, 'I want some more.'”

ON MONDAY an additional contender appeared on the official list of the approved applicants to run their very own LAUSD school under Public School Choice (actually for ALL the ones offered). It seems this particular EMO [Educational Management Organization] from Arizona missed the deadline because they had “submitted letters of intent to an incorrect e-mail address”. ["Another Group Files Application to Run 30 ‘Public School Choice’ Campuses"] In what other reality (let alone government agency or private sector enterprise) would such a lame excuse for missing a deadline (or a homework assignment) be accepted? The deadline had passed; the tardy bell had rung. The train had left the station.

TUESDAY THE RHETORICAL BATTLE taking place in the media instead of at the bargaining table escalated a notch. The superintendent publicly demanded four furlough days this year and threatened mass lay-offs next year – in exchange for which he is sacrificing a few of his near+dear local districts . {"LAUSD to Halve Its Local Offices"] 4LAKids is all for transparency and public disclosure in contract negotiations – but-take-it-or-leave-it/my-way-or-the-highway ultimata ain’t exactly good faith collective bargaining!

[also see: When a little transparency reveals a little too much: AALA & SUPERINTENDENT CORTINES’ FRIDAY THE 13th LETTER]

ON WEDNESDAY THE TIMES ran their obligatory annual “how confusing the LAUSD magnet application process is” article. ["L.A. Unified School Choices Are A Confusing Maze"].

Before I join in and agree that the application process is twisted and bizarre let me first say that the Magnet Program is a true gem – one of the best things we do in LAUSD. And even though the ‘Choices’ brochure is confusing, the choice practiced is ACTUAL PARENTAL CHOICE in that parents are involved in the choice of their child’s school – the choice is NOT made for them by outside operators or cartographers, faceless bureaucrats, a lottery or school board members.

But if the Magnet Program works, why mess with success?


A. Because the application process and points system IS confusing, twisted and bizarre.
B. Because of its success the magnet program should be expanded and replicated because it improves student outcomes.
C. Because more candidates for the Magnet Program are turned down or waitlisted each year than there are applicants for charter schools in LA. (In the world of commerce this is called establishing need.)

I got my start bloviating on matters educational explaining the magnet process at my neighborhood school – and later at other schools and online. It became entertainment made into an art form by Sandra Tsing Loh and her Martinis & Magnets shows and her Ask a Magnet Yenta gig at The Times. A few years ago Sandra and I were invited in to Beaudry to consult on simplifying the application. We were, needless to say, totally unsuccessful. I think some fonts were changed but the arcana remained arcane and the confusion continues to this day.

Solving this stuff takes more than writing about it.

Thank you to all who dream of a better day …and then work towards it.

¡Onward/Hasta adelante! - smf


Daily Breeze website from staff reports

11/24/2009 07:09:10 AM PST | A fourth group has applied to run Gardena and San Pedro high schools under a Los Angeles Unified School District reform initiative.

The Daily Breeze previously reported that three groups - the internal school community, United Teachers Los Angeles and Illinois-based education consultancy Synesi foundation - had applied to run both schools.

The fourth group, which was not included last week on an initial LAUSD list of applicants to the Public School Choice program, is Phoenix-based American Charter Schools Foundation.

Like UTLA and Synesi, American Charter Schools Foundation applied to run all 30 campuses available under the initiative.

A school district spokeswoman said the foundation was not originally reported as an applicant because it had submitted letters of intent to an incorrect e-mail address.

All the letters of intent from the applicants

LAUSD TO HALVE ITS LOCAL OFFICES: Even with closing local centers, deficit and thousands of layoffs still loom for coming year

By Connie Llanos, Staff Writer | LA Daily News

Updated: 11/24/2009 08:43:55 PM PST

In a concession to unions, Los Angeles Unified Schools chief Ramon Cortines said Tuesday he will eliminate half the number of local district offices he helped create a few years ago in a bid to reduce next year's deficit of nearly $500 million.

But Cortines said savings from the move will amount to just $12 million, and tougher cutbacks, including layoffs, will have to be made to balance the budget.

"There is no way to avoid cuts," Cortines said at a special budget meeting called to inform the school board about the district's worsening financial outlook.

"We have less state and federal money and fewer students ... the district has to adjust."

On Tuesday, district staff said LAUSD now faces a deficit of $495 million for the 2010-11 school year - up $15 million from earlier projections that included cost-of-living adjustments that the district now does not anticipate receiving from the state.

The eight local districts, including two in the San Fernando Valley, have been a major sticking point for a majority of LAUSD's employee unions. Union leaders complain too much money is wasted in these minibureaucracies and on their administrative staff positions.

Cortines, however, said cutting the local districts to four will only save him about $12 million - about 3 percent of the district's total deficit - and it will not prevent layoffs.

The elimination of all local district offices has been a long-standing request of United Teachers Los Angeles, the largest district employee union representing about 37,000 teachers and 4,000 counselors and social workers - a majority of LAUSD's employees.

UTLA president A.J. Duffy said he did not believe shutting down half of these offices would only save $12 million.

"We will have to look at exactly what offices are shut down, then we'll have to look at the properties they vacate and the personnel that leaves to figure out exactly how much is saved," Duffy said.

Set up in 2000 by Cortines, when he was acting superintendent for six months, the local district offices were created as a way to give schools, teachers, administrators and parents more support and access to LAUSD resources.

Currently the eight offices are spread across the city. With about 50 people per office, they oversee all aspects of instruction, operations and discipline of students and teachers at the district's more than 885 schools and preschools.

Valley offices scrutinized

In the San Fernando Valley there are two local district offices representing the eastern and western portions of the region. Under this plan it is likely that only one office will remain in the region.

"Things will be more impersonal and relationships will suffer at a time when the district wants more personalization," said Michelle King, local district superintendent for District 3, representing much of West Los Angeles.

King, who has been with the district for 25 years as a teacher, school administrator and now district administrator, said the addition of the local district offices nine years ago helped increase efficiency at schools since staff could go to one neighborhood office, rather than downtown headquarters to get answers and information. The office also gave parents more access to district personnel.

The move to shut down the offices comes just two weeks after Cortines gave all district employees an ultimatum to accept four furloughs days this year and a 12 percent pay cut next year or face layoffs of up to 8,500 employees.

Cortines asked that concessions be made by Dec. 8, before the district is required to submit its budget to the Los Angeles County Office of Education.

So far SEIU Local 99 - representing about 20,000 cafeteria workers, bus drivers and custodians - has agreed to the concessions, saving the district about $7.7 million this year.

Duffy said he is ready and willing to talk to Cortines about concessions, but he would not comment further.

"We choose to negotiate the way the law says we are supposed to - not in the media," Duffy said.

While most of the district's budget woes stem from the state's continued fiscal crisis, enrollment at LAUSD has also dropped to its lowest point in more than a decade.

Currently 51,000 students within LAUSD boundaries - or about 8 percent of the district's entire enrollment - attend charter schools. Independent charter schools traditionally do not hire LAUSD staff.

Meeting new deficit

Last year, when the district expected a budget shortfall of $258 million, it said it would balance that by increasing class sizes in kindergarten through third grade from 24:1 to 29:1. The district also said it would have to cut arts and music programs in half and reduce school nurses and cops.

To address the new deficit, that includes an estimated $50 million to $60 million this year, and a deficit of $495 million next year, Cortines said schools should budget cuts of between 10 to 20 percent in services.

Revenue generating opportunities are being looked at. Cortines said he expects to sell about 10 LAUSD owned properties this year - none located in the San Fernando Valley.

L.A. UNIFIED SCHOOL CHOICES ARE A CONFUSING MAZE: Fairs and websites try to help parents, but deciphering magnets, points and charters within the dist

by Howard Blume | L.A. Times

November 27, 2009 -- Pamela Krys, who moved to Woodland Hills a year ago, made a confession during a school fair this month at Sutter Middle School in Canoga Park.

"I don't understand the points," she said, referring to one aspect of the application process for magnet programs. "They don't do points in Florida."

Understanding the points system is just one of the complications surrounding school choice in the Los Angeles Unified School District. Although its "choices" website is improving, the school system provides no central location -- online or off -- to help parents manage all their options if they don't want their children to attend their neighborhood school.

Separate programs have different application forms, processes and deadlines. Nor does the district supply some key information, such as student test scores for most magnets. Budget cuts led to the cancellation of districtwide magnet fairs, although some regional administrators have staged smaller events.

The district's "choices" application brochure offers bare-bones magnet descriptions. It does, for example, classify a magnet as a police academy or a math-science-technology program but doesn't go into detail. It also includes how many students applied last year, along with the number of openings this year.

At the Venice High foreign language magnet, for example, 230 students applied last year and there are 145 openings this year.

Such figures offer imperfect insight in part because the openings and applications counts are not broken down by grade. There's also the factor of a student's race, because the magnet program, which began in the 1970s, remains an effort to promote voluntary integration.

The Venice magnet, like most, has a target enrollment of 30% white and 70% nonwhite. Based on recent history, white applicants for ninth grade are virtual shoo-ins because relatively few white families sign up, said magnet coordinator Darcey Wark.

Nonwhite students are likely to need about 12 "points" to avoid the waiting list, she added.

Points are collected several ways. If a family's neighborhood school is overcrowded, for example, the student gets four points. If that school serves an enrollment that is predominantly low-income minority, the student gets another four points. Applying to a magnet and not getting in earns four rejection points, which can be saved from year to year.

Some parents apply to overcrowded magnets hoping to get edged out, so they can accumulate rejection points for the future. (These points are lost when a student gets into a magnet and declines to attend.)

Families typically select a program with little knowledge about its performance. That's because many magnets are not stand-alone campuses, so student test scores are folded into those of the host school, even though the district has the data to break them out separately.

The Venice magnet does that on its own, proud to show off its proficiency rates of about 77% in English and 66% in math, which puts it firmly in the upper rank of high school programs, Wark said.

Magnet aspirants who end up on waiting lists need to line up other options but shouldn't necessarily give up. The Venice program typically offers admission to all wait-listed applicants before summer's end, she added.

Other than magnets, the application form in the choices brochure gives families the option to be bused out of overcrowded schools or to leave schools that have persistently failed to meet federal test-score targets. More than 300 of these "failing" schools are listed in the brochure, which also can be found at www.echoices.lausd .net.

The application brochure, due Dec. 18, is mailed to parents whose children are enrolled in traditional or magnet schools. Others, including those at charters, can obtain the applications from public libraries and traditional schools.

Charters are independently managed and free from some restrictions that govern traditional schools. The best place to find them is on a locater map on the website of the California Charter Schools Assn. In the choices brochure, charters are mentioned but specific schools are not listed.

Every charter school has its own application process and its own timetable for a lottery if too many students apply.

At the Sutter fair, district magnet coordinator Sara Lasnover said the complexities of the magnet system relate to its history as an integration program. She tried to explain the points system to parents and also gave out her phone number: (213) 241-4177.

Parent Krissie Flemming is leaning toward either Hale Middle School in Woodland Hills or the nearby Woodland Hills Academy. Many such neighborhood schools have accelerated programs, called schools for advanced studies, for high-achieving students like her fifth-grader Hunter, although they can vary widely in academic rigor.

Especially with overall enrollment down, schools are eager to open up available seats to willing students; that process will occur in April or May.

Parent Lisa Polydoros wasn't sure how charter schools work -- and no charter representative was on hand to clarify the matter.

"I've been in the system all my life," she said, "and it's still confusing."

Ask A Magnet Yenta: Top Five FAQs about the Magnet Program

BUDGET CUTS HIT BROAD SWATH OF CAL STATE: The effects are rippling through the university system, touching students, teachers and administrators alike
By Carla Rivera | LA Times

November 29, 2009 | Rochelle Corros is passionate when she speaks about her college major: Recreation and leisure studies is not just fun and games, she says with conviction. Graduates run city and state parks, recreation departments, hospital clinics, theaters and cruise lines. They help keep kids off the streets.

So the Cal State Dominguez Hills senior was floored by an August letter from administrators telling her that admissions to the program would be suspended and courses slashed as the campus grappled with steep budget reductions.

Corros, 25, had to scramble to replace one canceled class this fall and no longer knows if she will be able to complete her studies by next winter as planned.

"It's really stressful and really frustrating," she said. "Some college students may just want to get by, but others want to plan their education semester by semester and have an eye on a deadline. . . . Now I don't know if any of the classes I need are going to be offered."

Corros is hardly alone as she tries to plan for an uncertain future. These days, the California State University system -- the nation's largest with 23 campuses and 450,000 students -- seems like a ship unmoored. With its lifeline of state funding cut more than half a billion dollars this fiscal year, Cal State, along with other California schools, has been unable to avoid unprecedented student fee hikes, staff and faculty furloughs, and deep reductions in enrollment.

Many campuses are planning for historic program reductions that could greatly narrow academic options, alter the career plans of thousands of students and, ultimately, further harm California's shaky economy, experts say.

The Cal State cutbacks are not uniform. Each campus was allocated reductions based on various criteria, including enrollment. Allowances were made for smaller campuses and those with large proportions of financial aid students.

Among recent cost-saving measures across the university, Cal State Stanislaus is canceling its winter term and will move next year to a more traditional two-semester schedule. The school, in Turlock, near Modesto, cut 50 part-time faculty and 192 course offerings this fall; several hundred more classes will probably be eliminated in the spring.

Humboldt State closed its popular Natural History Museum. It was the only such museum in largely rural Humboldt County and attracted thousands of visitors annually. The campus is the county's second-largest employer; the economics department estimates that twice monthly staff and faculty furloughs have sapped the local economy of $8.6 million.

Administrators at Dominguez Hills closed the student newspaper and may eliminate some small academic programs, including music, art and Chicano studies.

The Cal State system often does not get the same attention as the University of California, but in the state's master plan for higher education, Cal State is the workhorse of undergraduate academics, producing 60% of public school bachelor's degrees, according to the Public Policy Institute of California.

"It serves a more diverse population than UC; it's more representative," said Hans Johnson, an associate director at the institute. "It's very large, very important and a key component in producing our workforce."

California already faces a skills gap, with demand for educated workers outstripping supply. Cal State's cuts will only exacerbate the problem, Johnson said. The system reduced enrollment by 4,000 students in the fall and expects to cut 40,000 more in the next two years. The state will suffer from those decisions, he said.

The following student, faculty member and administrator are among those on the front lines:

Student's plight

Corros, of Lakewood, earned an associate's degree in liberal studies from Cypress College before transferring to Dominguez Hills last year. But for as long as she can remember, she has loved spending time with children, finding their energy and creativity an inspiration.

She worked in a program helping autistic children learn academic and play skills and decided that recreation studies would provide opportunities beyond the typical 9-to-5 desk job. It didn't matter to her that it wasn't a big program at the campus, unlike business, for example.

"When you think about recreation, you're not going to think high enrollment. But if you say it's not important to the world, that's wrong," she said.

At a meeting early in the school year, lower division recreation students were advised to consider changing majors because it was unclear which classes would be available, she said. She had just enough credits to continue.

The uncertainty has added to the usual college stress of tests, homework and squeezing in a social life. Corros, who says she was not serious about her studies in high school, is now vice president of the campus recreation club and has spoken about the plight of recreation students at a community forum. She also addressed a recent meeting of the Cal State Board of Trustees, urging them to save academic programs.

Corros receives financial aid, and her parents, who attended the forum, struggle to provide support. Part of her drive to get her degree on time is to find a job and begin helping them, she says.

"For my parents to actually see me . . . choose a major, go to classes and take things seriously, I'm quite proud of that," she said. "Now, this is happening."

Worried lecturer

As a precocious 6-year-old in Italy, Giulio Della Rocca earned the nickname "Prof" from his friends because he was the go-to guy for help with homework. Teaching has always been his dream.

When he earned a PhD in mathematics from UCLA, he thought he was prepared for a secure future. He's been a lecturer at Cal State Long Beach since 2001. But lately, when he hugs his young daughter, he wonders how he'll continue to be able to provide for her.

This fall, the university canceled one of his math classes, cutting his income by 20%. Like other faculty and staff, Della Rocca also must take two unpaid furlough days a month, lowering his pay 10% more. His mortgage and bills, he points out, did not drop commensurately.

"Now I have to get money from an equity line of credit or I literally wouldn't be able to pay all my bills and [would] be in jeopardy of losing my house," he said. "This is what the budget cuts are doing."

Della Rocca, 47, is trying to find outside income to fill the gaps, even asking a contractor friend about odd jobs, he said. His family tries to stretch their budget: They walk or use bicycles for errands. They forgo parties and movies and go to the beach for entertainment. They grow tomatoes, carrots, celery and cucumbers to save on grocery bills.

Della Rocca's math classes cover basic skills, and the cuts come at a time when the number of students needing such courses is rising, he said. His four remaining classes are full, and he turns no students away.

The furloughs have disrupted his life and those of his students, who are losing momentum and motivation with shifting class schedules, he said. Because classroom hours have been reduced, some topics can't be covered and students can't be tested on the material.

He tries to ease the effect on his students. "I usually do some work and increase the number of handouts for students so that even though they see me less, they continue to have work to do," he said.

Della Rocca said he also tries to be optimistic that the budget crisis will end quickly and the lost funding be restored. "I'm hopeful they will find a way."

A provost's angst

In his seventh-floor office with a view of the San Gabriel Mountains, Provost Marten L. denBoer is trying to close a $30-million budget shortfall at Cal Poly Pomona.

That will involve eliminating many programs, a process he says is like triage: Resources must be focused on programs that get the most bang for the buck, using criteria such as the number of students enrolled, the number of graduates, whether the program serves a unique function and its effectiveness in placing students into the workforce.

Engineering, for example, is a core part of the school's mission and is not threatened; nor is architecture, which is one of only two such programs in the Cal State system and is nationally recognized. But plenty of smaller programs, such as philosophy and history, may be on the chopping block.

These are the toughest, most wrenching decisions he will make in his academic career, said DenBoer, who came to Pomona last year. He said he wants consensus from faculty and deans on the cost-cutting measures, but knows the actions aren't likely to win him applause.

He said administrative functions will be reviewed and probably pared, but he rejects the argument that significant cuts can be made in that area. "The lights have to stay on, and someone has to maintain the computer system," he said. "These are people who work very hard and have to be properly compensated."

Cal Poly will not emerge undamaged, he said.

"Faculty express concerns about whether we are changing the nature of education at Cal Poly Pomona, and my honest answer is that it's going to be very difficult to reverse these changes," he said. "The people of California have made the decision that they don't want to invest in higher education as they have in the past. That means we will be a smaller university and will not be able to offer all the programs we've been offering."

Born in France to Dutch parents, DenBoer, 59, grew up mostly in Canada before earning a PhD in physics and serving in various academic posts at New York institutions, including associate provost in the City University system. While at Queens College, he had to consolidate academic programs during the financial crisis that followed the Sept. 11 attacks.

The economy and enrollments there eventually recovered. But he doesn't expect that Cal State will ever completely recoup its losses from this downturn.

He recalls the time, while training for the New York City Marathon, that he was struck by a car and spent three months in the hospital with a broken neck and legs so shattered that his doctors expected he would never walk again. He recovered, but the experience of helplessness and dependence led him to switch from research to more active academic roles.

Now DenBoer hopes that his legacy at Pomona will be one of helping keep the school alive.

"I think we're in a better position than some campuses because we have a pretty well-defined and supported mission," he said. "We'll survive and do well, but the future will not be the same."


HIGHLIGHTS, LOWLIGHTS & THE NEWS THAT DOESN'T FIT: The Rest of the Stories from Other Sources
RETIRED LOS ANGELES TEACHER KEEPS AT IT. FOR FREE: The district balked at first, but now Bruce Kravets is back in the classroom by Steve Lopez, LA Times columnist...

L.A. UNIFIED SCHOOL CHOICES ARE A CONFUSING MAZE: Fairs and websites try to help parents, but deciphering magnets, ...


BRIEFLY: Texas’ Catch 22 | Cal’s universities hard(er) to get into | Schools wait for H1N1 vaccine | Class size up...

No budget/No clue: CITY OF L.A.’s CREDIT DOWNGRADED: L.A. credit rating takes a hit in light of grim budget outlo...

MARKHAM MIDDLE SCHOOL ISN’T WORKING: The problem-plagued Watts school needs teachers, but state regulations and c...

HEALING THE WORLD, ONE SCHOOL AT A TIME: By Rachel Heller | The Jewish Journal Emerson Middle School principal...

B U D G E T - LAUSD TO HALVE ITS LOCAL OFFICES: Even with closing local centers, deficit and thousands of layof..

When a little transparency reveals a little too much: AALA & SUPERINTENDENT CORTINES’ FRIDAY THE 13th LETTER: F..



NO UNIFORM SOLUTION: Uniforms make students look sharper and create a safer environment, but they can't raise a..

LA SCHOOLS CHIEF ORDERS HIRING FREEZE: Ramon Cortinez (sic) also announced other expense cuts.: LAUSD Superinte..

CHOICES ROILING VALLEY SCHOOL: Competition causes apprehension at San Fernando campus.: By Connie Llanos, Staff..

EVENTS: Coming up next week...
*Dates and times subject to change. ________________________________________
Phone: 213-241-5183
Phone: 213-893-6800


What can YOU do?
• E-mail, call or write your school board member: • 213-241-6383 • 213-241-6386 • 213-241-6180 • 213-241-6382 • 213-241-6388 • 213-241-6385 • 213-241-6387
...or your city councilperson, mayor, the governor, member of congress, senator - or the president. Tell them what you really think! • There are 26 mayors and five county supervisors representing jurisdictions within LAUSD, the mayor of LA can be reached at • 213.978.0600
• Call or e-mail Governor Schwarzenegger: 213-897-0322 e-mail:
• Open the dialogue. Write a letter to the editor. Circulate these thoughts. Talk to the principal and teachers at your local school.
• Speak with your friends, neighbors and coworkers. Stay on top of education issues. Don't take my word for it!
• Get involved at your neighborhood school. Join your PTA. Serve on a School Site Council. Be there for a child.
• If you are eligible to become a citizen, BECOME ONE.
• If you a a citizen, REGISTER TO VOTE.
• If you are registered, VOTE LIKE THE FUTURE DEPENDS ON IT.

Who are your elected federal & state representatives? How do you contact them?

Scott Folsom is a parent leader in LAUSD. He is Past President of Los Angeles Tenth District PTSA and represents PTA on the LAUSD Construction Bond Citizen's Oversight Committee and the BOC on the Board of Education Facilities Committee. He is an elected repreprentative on his neighborhood council. He is a Health Commissioner, Legislation Team member and a member of the Board of Managers of the California State PTA. He serves on numerous school district advisory and policy committees and has served a PTA officer and governance council member at three LAUSD schools. He is the recipient of the UTLA/AFT 2009 "WHO" Gold Award for his support of education and public schools - an honor he hopes to someday deserve. • In this forum his opinions are his own and your opinions and feedback are invited. Quoted and/or cited content copyright © the original author and/or publisher. All other material copyright © 4LAKids.
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