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FROM THIS EPISODE

Democratic leaders in Sacramento pushed ahrd today for Mayor Villaraigosa’s partial take-over of LA schools.  Will power-politics set back reform --instead of making things better?  Do all unionized teachers back the plan?  What about former Mayor Richard Riordan? Plus, the planet Pluto becomes a "dwarf."

Producers:
Frances Anderton

Reporter's Notebook Pluto Demoted 6 MIN

Last year, astronomers at Cal Tech discovered an object they called Xena--even bigger than Pluto, and also orbiting around the Sun. That set off an astronomical controversy. Are there really 10 planets? Today, the International Astronomical Union said, "No." Xena isn't a planet at all, and neither is Pluto. Planetary astronomer Mike Brown led the CalTech team that discovered Xena. (An extended discussion on this subject was originally aired earlier today on To the Point.)

Guests:
Mike Brown, Professor of Planetary Astronomy, California Institute of Technology

Main Topic School Reform Bill on Fast-Track in Sacramento 18 MIN


Mayor Villaraigosa says that dropout rates and low achievement show that the LA Unified School District is failing. He claims that the Mayors of New York, Chicago and Boston have demonstrated that accountability in just one elected official can put public schools on the road to reform and improvement. His bill to shake up the system is on a fast track in Sacramento, with one Democratic Senator saying her leaders told her to vote for the bill even though she has reservations. The Legislature's own legal counsel says it may be unconstitutional and some elected school board members promise to sue if it's enacted and signed by the Governor. Is it a power grab by the Mayor and the teachers' union?

Guests:
David Tokofsky, Associated Administrators of Los Angeles
Richard Riordan, former Mayor of Los Angeles (@RichardJRiordan)
Ed Levine, High school teacher, LAUSD

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