Saturday, August 25, 2012

Paper or Plastic?

Onward! 4LAKids
4LAKids: Sunday 26•Aug•2012
In This Issue:
 •  PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES: A NATION DIVIDED - The New Phi Beta Kappa/Gallup Poll On Public Education :: What we can learn
 •  HIGHLIGHTS, LOWLIGHTS & THE NEWS THAT DOESN'T FIT: The Rest (but not necessarily the best) of the Stories from Other Sources
 •  EVENTS: Coming up next week...
 •  What can YOU do?

Featured Links:
 •  OUR CHILDREN, OUR FUTURE: What will California schoolchildren, your school district and YOUR School get when the initiative passes?
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 •  4LAKids Anthology: All the Past Issues, solved, resolved and unsolved!
 •  4LAKidsNews: a compendium of recent items of interest - news stories, scurrilous rumors, links, academic papers, rants and amusing anecdotes, etc.
So – there seems to be a disconnect between AT&T and my new apartment owner – which means I still don’t have phone service or internet connectivity a week after moving. The law in California says the landlord is responsible for the providing and maintaining the connection between where the phone wire enters the building and my new abode [California Civil Code Section 1941.4]. This has all the beginnings of a small claims action or a bad episode of Judge Judy. Stay tuned

This means is that I go online in coffee houses, McDonalds or public libraries - so I am over caffeinated, getting too much sodium and saturated fat and at the mercy of LAPL’s strange hours. Remember how Mayor Tony, when he was The Technology Mayor, was going to provide universal wireless access to the citizenry? I guess I never got the access code.

IN SACRAMENTO THE LEGE IS BENDING LIKE A PRETZEL TO COMPROMISE with the Teacher’s Unions and Arne Duncan on coming up with a teacher assessment model that will pass muster with both. Add to this they need something the governor might sign and will be revenue-neutral – and that they need the done-deal by next Friday – and you can see the problem.

(Gratuitous Parenthetical Internet Factoid: Pretzels have been around for almost 1,400 years. History has their origin about A.D. 610 when a baker in a monastery in southern France or northern Italy twisted leftover strips of bread dough into the shape of a person's arms crossed in prayer, traditional posture for prayer in those days.)

And the Just Say Nay(sayers) like Diane Ravitch and the friends and fellow travelers o’ 4LAKids who email me offer no help.

One teacher forwarded me a peer reviewed scholarly study from the Notices of American Mathematical Society about how Value Added Modeling in teacher assessment is bogus (if not downright evil) math – Mathematical Intimidation: Driven by the Data (highlighted following)

While another teacher responded on Facebook (whose stock value has halved – remember how the FB IPO was going to save the California Budget?) opined on test-based teacher assessment at the individual teacher/student level:

"The problem with using CST scores is the kids really have no stake in their results. In terms of reciprocal accountability, it would be the only fair way to include them in any teacher evaluation. If the kids like a teacher, they may be motivated to do well. But if they don't, they may rationalize blowing off the test in hopes it will reflect badly on the teacher & get him/her fired. In the 1990s, LAUSD kids used to complete a ‘stakeholder satisfaction survey’, For the most part; the data reflected how kids respected their teachers and felt safe at school. Unfortunately, the forces vested in the negative stereotype of LAUSD's ‘failing schools’ (educational consultants like IFL [Institute for Learning]) were quick to dismiss anything that looked like ‘good news’.”

ON TUESDAY THE BOARD OF ED HAD THEIR FIRST MEETING OF THE NEW SCHOOL YEAR. (OK, their first two meetings – they met twice; once at 9AM – and again at noon. They are not paid by the meeting – but they do get their pay docked for missing a meeting!) In three different resolutions they voted unanimously to support both the governor’s tax initiative, Prop 30 (which if it passes increases funding for everything under the-Sacramento sun …and if it fails cuts funding for education only) – and the PTA/Munger Initiative, Prop 38, which raises taxes and increases funding for Pre-K-12 schools, avoiding Sacramento.

And they voted to no longer Mk use of one-use-only/landfill-unfriendly Styrofoam trays in school food service in favor of much more expensive one-use-only recycled paper trays. This new policy has three curious aspects:

• It was based on a study+project by students at Thomas Starr King Middle School.
• The policy is already in place districtwide, beginning on the first day o’ school.
• …and wouldn’t it be even more ecologically correct and fiscally prudent to wash and reuse hard plastic or metal trays as was done in olden days?

TWO INTERESTING AND PROVOCATIVE PUBLIC OPINION POLLS CAME OUT THIS WEEK: The annual Phi Beta Kappa/Gallup national survey on the Public’s Perceptions of Public Education and also the USC Study on the two California Education Tax Initiatives. Read Diane Ravitch’s take on the first – and SIA Cabinet Report take on the second. And then drill down and review the data for yourself; find your own answers to the questions – and the deeper question of “What does all of this mean?” – in the context of today and the context of the future.

AND IF YOU REALLY WANT TO FEEL GOOD ABOUT DOING WELL - 7673 good words about the future: EVERYTHING YOU’VE HEARD ABOUT FAILING SCHOOLS IS WRONG: Attendance: up. Dropout rates: plummeting. College acceptance: through the roof. My mind-blowing year inside a "low-performing" school; from the Sept/Oct issue of Mother Jones | ttp://

¡Onward/Adelante! - smf

from a paper by Dr. John Ewing published in the Notices of the American Mathematical Society, May 2011 |

●● Thank you to a 4LAKids reader for forwarding this article.

“The most common misuse of mathematics is simpler, more pervasive, and (alas) more insidious: mathematics employed as a rhetorical weapon—an intellectual credential to convince the public that an idea or a process is “objective” and hence better than other competing ideas or processes.

“This is mathematical intimidation.

“It is especially persuasive because so many people are awed by mathematics and yet do not understand it—a dangerous combination.

“The latest instance of the phenomenon is valued-added modeling (VAM), used to interpret test data. Value-added modeling pops up everywhere today, from newspapers to television to political campaigns. VAM is heavily promoted with unbridled and uncritical enthusiasm by the press, by politicians, and even by (some) educational experts, and it is touted as the modern, “scientific” way to measure educational success in everything from charter schools to individual teachers.

“Yet most of those promoting value-added modeling are ill-equipped to judge either its effectiveness or its limitations. Some of those who are equipped make extravagant claims without much detail, reassuring us that someone has checked into our concerns and we shouldn’t worry. Value-added modeling is promoted because it has the right pedigree—because it is based on “sophisticated mathematics”.


PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES: A NATION DIVIDED - The New Phi Beta Kappa/Gallup Poll On Public Education :: What we can learn

by Diane Ravitch, from her blog |

August 22, 2012 :: The annual Phi Delta Kappa-Gallup Poll of the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools was released today. (follows)

The sponsors characterize public opinion as split, which is true for many issues.

We must see this poll in the context of an unprecedented, well-funded campaign to demonize public schools and their teachers over at least the past two years, and by some reckoning, even longer.

The media has parroted endlessly the assertion that our public schools are failures, they are (as Bill Gates memorably said to the nation’s governors in 2005) “obsolete,” and “the system is broken.” How many times have you heard those phrases? How many television specials have you seen claiming that our education system is disastrous? And along comes “Waiting for ‘Superman’” with its propagandistic attack on public education in cities and suburbs alike and its appeal for privatization. Add to that Arne Duncan’s faithful parroting of the claims of the critics.

That is the context, and it is remarkable that Americans continue to believe in the schools they know best and to understand what their most critical need is.

Here are the salient findings:

1. Americans have a low opinion of American education (how could they not, given the bombardment of criticism?): only 18% give it an A or B. And here is the real accomplishment of the corporate reformers: Those who judge American education as a D or F have increased from 22% to 30% in the past 20 years. Actually, their success in smearing U.S. education is even greater, because in 2002, before the implementation of NCLB, only 16% judged the nation’s schools so harshly. So the reform campaign has doubled the proportion of Americans who think the nation’s schools deserve a D or F.

2. When asked to evaluate the schools in their own community, 48% give them an A or B, which is the highest rating in 20 years.

3. When asked to evaluate the school their oldest child attends, an astonishing 77% give it an A or B. This is the highest rating in 20 years. Only 6% give it a D or F. This question elicits the views of informed consumers, the people who refer to a real school, not the hypothetical school system that is lambasted every other day in the national press or condemned as “obsolete” by Bill Gates.

4. When asked whether they have trust and confidence in teachers, 71% said yes. Americans continue to respect and admire teachers, despite the nonstop public bashing of them in the media.

5. When asked whether standardized test scores should be used to evaluate teachers, opinion split 52-47 in favor. Considering that the public has heard nonstop endorsements of this bad idea from President Obama, Secretary Duncan, and most other political figures–and very limited dissent–it is surprising that opinion is almost equally divided. How did so many Americans manage to figure out that this idea is problematic at best?

6. When people were asked to describe the teachers who had the greatest influence in their lives, they used words like caring, compassionate, motivating, and inspiring. Interesting that few remembered the teachers who raised their test scores.

7. There has been a big change in what the public sees as the biggest problems facing the schools today. Ten years ago, the biggest concerns were about discipline (fighting, gangs, drugs, lack of discipline, overcrowding). Today, the biggest problem that the public sees, by far, is lack of financial support. 35% chose that option. Among public school parents, it was 43%. Concerns about discipline almost faded away in comparison to concerns about the lack of financial support for the schools.

8. On the subject of vouchers, there was a surprising increase in the proportion who would support “allowing students to choose a private school at public expense.” It increased from 34% to 44%, which is a big jump. I recommend that future questioning ask about support to allow students “to choose a private or religious school at public expense.” That would be closer to the reality of voucher programs in Milwaukee, Cleveland, D.C., Louisiana, Ohio, and Indiana.

9. On the subject of charters, public opinion dipped, from an approval rating of 70% in 2011 to 66% in 2012. It will be interesting to see where this number goes as the public begins to understand more about charters in their own communities.

10. A question about the parent trigger was so vacuous as to be misleading. The question was “Some states are considering laws that allow parents to petition to remove the leadership and staff at failing schools. Do you favor or oppose such laws?” 70% favor, 76% of public school parents favor. This is a misleading question, however, as the parent trigger is not a matter of simply allowing parents to sign a petition, but of allowing parents to take control of a public school and hand it over to private management. My guess is that the public doesn’t know much about the parent trigger concept and hasn’t heard a discussion about the pros and cons. So, I don’t put much stock in the response–after all, why shouldn’t parents have the right to sign a petition to change the staff at their school? It does show how clever the corporate reformers are in framing issues that advance privatization and doing it in ways that are deceptive and alluring.

11. In a series of questions about the Common Core standards, most people believe they are a good thing and that they will make the nation more competitive globally; about half think they will improve the quality of education while 40% think they will have no effect. These answers exemplify why polls of this kind must be viewed with caution. I am willing to bet that the majority of respondents has no idea what the Common Core standards are; and willing to bet that 98% have never read them.

In future versions of the poll, I hope that questions will be asked about for-profit schools, privatization, and vouchers for religious schools. These are big issues today, and the poll should ask about them.

My takeaway from the 2012 poll is that the corporate reform movement has succeeded in increasing support for vouchers, but that the American public continues to have a remarkably high opinion of the schools and teachers they know best despite the concerted efforts of the reformers to undermine those beliefs. This is an instance where evidence trumps ideology. The reformers have not yet been able to destroy the bonds between the American people and their community’s schools.

THE FULL REPORT: The 2012 Phi Delta Kappa-Gallup Poll of the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools

By John Fensterwald. EdSource Today |

August 24th, 2012 | At the 11th hour, the author of the bill to rewrite the teacher evaluation law has offered compromises intended to placate opponents and to qualify the state for a waiver from the No Child Left Behind law. The latter may work, but probably not the former.

Key amendments to AB 5 that Assembymember Felipe Fuentes released Thursday (see link below in “Going Deeper” for the amendments) don’t appear to have softened the opposition of organizations representing school administrators, school boards, and some student advocacy groups. They say the biggest problem with the bill remains: It makes every aspect of evaluations subject to negotiations with teachers unions, eroding power that districts assert they have had to unilaterally set the criteria and standards for evaluations. “EdVoice still strongly opposes AB 5,” Bill Lucia, president and CEO of the Sacramento nonprofit wrote in a statement Thursday night.

It’s premature to say whether passage of AB 5 would clear the path to a much desired NCLB waiver that’s already been granted to 33 states. A waiver would freeze penalties against low-performing districts and loosen restrictions on $350 million of California’s Title I money for low-income districts. But several of Fuentes’ changes respond directly to requirements that U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and the Department of Education had set for a wavier. These include:

The requirement that districts adopt at least three performance levels. The current law, the Stull Act, has only two: Satisfactory and Unsatisfactory. The adding of a third, such as Excellent, could enable districts to reward the best teachers and shield them from layoffs and bumping rights.

The mandatory use of state standardized test scores as one of several factors that measure a teacher’s contribution toward student academic growth. The Stull Act had required this but AB 5 until now had proposed that the use of state test scores be optional in evaluations. The feds, in listing requirements for a waiver, want test scores to be a “significant” component in measuring student growth. AB 5 does not include that word; each district and union would determine how much weight to give test scores, as well as factors such as student portfolios and presentations.

The California Teachers Association had taken the position that the California Standards Tests were not designed for teacher evaluations and therefore were inappropriate, and that the new Common Core assessments, developed by the Smarter Balanced Consortium of states, would have to be studied as to their suitability. However, among the new amendments, AB 5 would declare those assessments perfectly valid: “It is the intent of the Legislature that any assessments developed by a national consortium and adopted by the State Board and used for the purposes of this section meet statistical and psychometric standards appropriate for this use.”

The creation of model teacher evaluation systems by the State Board of Education for possible adoption by districts. The idea behind it is that the models would provide guidance that could eliminate protracted deliberations on difficult issues like establishing guidelines for teacher observations and developing consistency in training administrators on conducting evaluations.

Sue Burr, executive director of the State Board, said last week that federal education officials had suggested the Board adopt these models as part of a waiver application. In May, the State Board submitted a NCLB waiver application that ignored the requirements for teacher evaluations and other conditions. The state has yet to hear back from Duncan, and he has not publicly commented on it. Instead, he has announced plans to invite districts in states without a waiver to submit their own waiver proposals. If AB 5 passes and Gov. Jerry Brown signs it, the State Board is expected to file another waiver – one that conforms with the Department’s rules. The Board would have to approve the waiver at its Sept. 12 board meeting to meet the federal deadline.
Objections remain

AB 5 would establish an evaluation system based on best teaching practices as defined by the California Standards for the Teaching Profession. All sides agree this would be a significant step forward. And advocacy groups like EdVoice and Education Trust-West had called for some of the latest amendments that Fuentes agreed to. But they, the Association of California School Administrators, and the California School Boards Association are expected to continue to oppose the bill for one or both of the following reasons:

High costs of a new mandate. The state already reimburses districts about $18 million each year to cover reimbursement for negotiations under the Stull Act. AB 5 would broaden who would be evaluated and how often, along with adding costs from principal training and the expense of several teacher observations. This year, these costs will be included in a block grant of $28 per student covering teacher evaluations and other education mandates. Districts know that the new evaluation system will be expensive – how much isn’t clear – and are worried that the governor and Legislature won’t increase the block grant, leaving them holding the bag when AB 5 takes effect on July 1, 2014.

Fuentes is proposing to shift $60 million next year from a program for improving the lowest-performing schools, QEIA, to prepare those schools for the new evaluation system. Other schools and districts would not have any one-time startup money for the new system.

Subjecting all aspects of evaluations to collective bargaining. The Stull Act requires school boards of every district to establish standards of expected student achievement at each grade level in every area of study and to evaluate teachers based on students’ progress in meeting the standards. AB 5 would repeal this section of the law. In its place would be recommendations for best practices that would have to be negotiated between the district and the local teachers union. In a statement, Lucia of EdVoice said, “AB 5 eliminates the only provision in the state Education Code giving local districts control over standards. In doing so, it now opens the door to require districts to bargain over grade level standard expectations of pupils in each area of study at each grade level, since grade level expectations are the anchors for gauging progress of student learning and student learning must be assessed … in the job performance evaluations of teachers.”

Los Angeles Unified’s argument asserting the district’s right under the Stull Act to decide standards and criteria for evaluating teachers.

Whether school boards have the unilateral power under the Stull Act to determine the factors behind an evaluation and how much weight to give them has not been tested in court. Los Angeles Unified is pushing its authority in creating a voluntary pilot program for teachers at the same it is negotiating with United Teachers Los Angeles to implement it. An attorney for the district has written a brief laying out the district’s authority. The CTA has issued a rebuttal (which I have not seen).

The union argues the primary goal of an evaluation system should be to guide teachers to perform better. That requires trust, which can’t be built by imposing a system on teachers. Negotiations prevent bad systems, such as the disproportionate use of standardized test scores to judge teachers.

Districts argue that they should have the power to set the criteria on which teacher performance will be determined. Otherwise, there will be a weak system of expectations.

Fuentes is expected to introduce the amendments on Friday. The bill is expected to return to the Senate Education Committee early next week for a public hearing.


By Rick Najera, from City Watch and The Huffington Post |

8.20.2012 :: CALIFORNIA’S FUTURE: I'm at my children's school fundraiser. I'm eating pizza and holding coupons in my hand, wondering how many of these I have to attend to fund my children's education.

In front of me I see a person inside a hot thermal mouse costume dancing around my kids. This person is Chuck E. Cheese, and he (or "it") is helping fund my children's elementary school's education. Laughing children surround this pizza-loving rodent.

He is in the fifth level of minimum wage hell, but I'm not laughing because as a parent I know that funding public schools is the most important investment I can make.

Public K-12 education has been gutted in the past three years, and I'm particularly angry because these school children are most likely -- at least in California -- to be Latino.

I'm Mexican-American and a second generation Californian. Propositions have always been strange politics for us natives because it is nearly impossible to differentiate the truth from a politician's agenda.

However, according to Sandy Escobedo, Senior Policy Analyst at the Advancement Project:

The Latino K-12 population in California was over 1 million students, or 25.8 percent in 1981.

By 2010, the number increased to over 3 million students, making Latino students more than half of the total K-12 population in California.

Those statistics are not part of an agenda; they are simply the truth. My children are merely 3 of that 3 million Latino number.

I have three children who are half Mexican-American and half Irish-American. I call them "Mixicans," and they are an important part of our state's future. Twenty years from now, their education, or lack thereof, will determine if they are the problem or the solution to problems of California.

The National Education Association, an organization for education professionals, tracks the decline in per-student funding on a national and state basis. Based on their analysis, in 1981, the state of California spent over $500 per year more per student in comparison to the rest of the nation.

By 2009, the rest of the nation spent over $1,500 more per student per year in comparison to California. Yet, it gets worse.

In the last three years alone, California cut education by $20 billion. With numbers like these, it is no wonder that California now ranks 47th in per student funding and 50th in classroom size, resulting in over 40,000 educators without a job. This is the truth, not agenda.

Furthermore, Latino high school graduation in California is estimated to be 63 percent, according to the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System. At this current rate, improving high school graduation rates for Latinos would take a little over a decade.

The Education Trust-West, a statewide education civil-rights organization, advocates on behalf of schools, parents, and students to reverse this trend. Arun Ramanathan, Executive Director of Ed Trust-West, states: []

Tens of thousands of dropouts represent a large scale-tragedy for the California economy and our state's future prosperity. It's time we stopped talking about this problem and invested in the strategies that top districts and schools are using to fix it.

So what can we do to fix it? This November, Latinos in California have an opportunity to address this crisis by educating ourselves on the differences between the propositions on the ballot: Prop 30 and Prop 38, respectively.

Prop 38 is the only initiative on the ballot that guarantees funding directly to schools on a per-student basis. The initiative is designed to last 12 years so that for the first time, in a long time, Latino students in our public schools receive the funding that they need to compete for jobs in the twenty-first century.

One might argue that the propositions are tax increases, and that we as a state cannot afford that. After all, what have the politicos done with our money before? Whatever happened to all the money the Lottery was going to give our public school? That is the brilliance of voting Yes on 38: it makes it a crime for any politician to divert money away from the schools.

A vote for Prop 30 will solve the adult issues of our state, such as funding prison guard pensions, but it does not put the children first. The biggest problem we need to address is that of education vs. incarceration.

Education costs us around $7,500 per K-12 public school student a year where as a prisoner costs us around $50,000 a year per incarcerated adult. The difference for an incarcerated youth is much more staggering.

A recent Legislative Analyst’s Office report noted that the state spent $179,000 in 2011-2012 per incarcerated youth! In essence, the state spends $171,500 MORE incarcerating our kids than it does educating them.

Moreover, according to retiring San Francisco State President Robert Corrigan, California spends as much on prisons ($8.7 billion, or 9.45% of its budget), as it does on all of higher education ($9.3 billion, or 10.1% of its budget).

It was actually then-governor Jerry Brown that started the jail-building boom in California. Ironically enough, during Brown's first administration there were 44,000 people in prison.

Today there are 44,000 prison guards! If that does not make you angry consider this: in the last 30 years, California has built 22 new prisons versus one new University and one State University.

Victor Hugo said it best when he stated: "He who opens a school door, closes a prison."

Education is the most important civil rights issue today. We are living in a time of more and more economic segregation. If we put three million Latino students in underfunded schools, is that not economic segregation? Is that not "ghettoizing" our youth? Is California having the most crowded class sizes in the nation not a civil rights issue?

As a parent, I see this issue as the civil rights issue of our time. Without an education that will lead to a good job, my kids -- along with many other minority children -- will slip further into poverty; further slipping into an underdeveloped working class with no escape.

We may now sit anywhere on the bus, but if we cannot afford a good education then we may never get a job that will give us the paycheck to buy a ticket to ride that bus. That is economic segregation!

Prop 38 acknowledges that education is a civil right and it forces our governor and his fellow politicos in Sacramento to fund our schools.

One might argue that we need to let the governor fix California's economic problem and that Prop 30 is that fix, but if they were to read the small print they would learn that Prop 30 does not do what Prop 38 can.

Prop 30 is a compromise and I will not let my children's future be compromised any longer. Prop 30 comes with a threat of more cuts if not passed, whereas Prop 38 is a promise for California's future.

Prop 30 redirects some of the public school money, whereas Prop 38 forces Sacramento to give 100% of the school funding to local schools.

That is why I am voting "Yes on 38" and hoping never to see Chuck E. Cheese as the answer to my children's lack of education funding.

And, as I sit at this fundraiser eating pizza and slugging down sugary drinks, I wonder if the person dancing in the Chuck E. Cheese costume might be working in a better paying job had they not been educated in California.

(Rick Najera is an Award-winning Mexican American writer, actor, producer and director. This column was posted first at

HIGHLIGHTS, LOWLIGHTS & THE NEWS THAT DOESN'T FIT: The Rest (but not necessarily the best) of the Stories from Other Sources
EVERYTHING YOU’VE HEARD ABOUT FAILING SCHOOLS IS WRONG: Attendance: up. Dropout rates: plummeting. College accep...

Value Added Teacher Assessments - MATHEMATICAL INTIMIDATION: DRIVEN BY THE DATA: from a paper by Dr. John Ewing ...


Teacher Evaluation: FUENTES AGREES TO COMPROMISES ON AB 5: ARE THEY ENOUGH?: By John Fensterwald. EdSource Today...

PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES: A NATION DIVIDED - The New Phi Beta Kappa/Gallup Poll On Public Education...


PROP 38 … BECAUSE EDUCATION IS A CIVIL RIGHT: By Rick Najera, from City Watch and The Huffington Post |

PRESS CONFERENCE WELCOMES LAUSD’s SUPPORT FOR PROP 38: Remarks by Scott Folsom, Member of the California State P...

Student Viewpoint: OBJECTIVE TEACHER EVALUATION: By Shyam Senthilkumar | Posted in Opinion,Web Exclusive South ...

Diane Ravitch: IS THIS THE TRUE GOAL OF “®EFORM” TODAY?: from Diane Ravitch’ blog | ht...




L.A. SCHOOL BOARD BACKS TWO RIVAL TAX HIKES ON FALL BALLOT: The Board of Education supports Gov. Jerry Brown's b...


STUDENT ATTENDANCE IMPROVES AT LAUSD: Administrators continue to work for further improvement in attendance numb...


EVENTS: Coming up next week...

*Dates and times subject to change. ________________________________________
Phone: 213-241-5183
Phone: 213-241.8700


What can YOU do?
• E-mail, call or write your school board member: • 213-241-6386 • 213-241-6180 • 213-241-5555 • 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! • Find your state legislator based on your home address. Just go to: • 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 Brown: 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. THEY DO!.

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

Scott Folsom is a parent leader in LAUSD and is Parent/Volunteer of the Year for 2010-11 for Los Angeles County. • He is Past President of Los Angeles Tenth District PTSA and represented PTA on the LAUSD Construction Bond Citizen's Oversight Committee for ten years. 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 as 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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