Los Angeles Unified: Why Has It Been So Bad for So Long?
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A new survey by the Public Policy Institute of California shows that California voters are more frustrated than ever with the public schools—so cynical that they’re almost losing interest. What about Los Angeles Unified, where reform efforts have been ignored, administrators don’t even know about policies of the elected board, there’s no link between plans and budgets and no sense of urgency? On Reporter's Notebook, unhappiness comes to Disneyland.
Photo Credit: Gabriel Bouys
Why Has Los Angeles Unified Been So Bad for So Long? ()
When David Brewer became Superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District, he ordered a study of what works and what doesn't. The Florida-based consulting firm he hired didn't have to look far. Evergreen Solutions spoke with more than 100 people who work for the district and reviewed reports on LAUSD going back five to ten years. Findings include reform efforts being discarded or put on hold by senior managers, out-of-date policies or administrators ill-informed of newer policies, disconnect between planning and budgeting, a lack of urgency in responding to priorities and deadlines, and a lack of accountability at all levels. Superintendent Brewer promises to change all that, just as past superintendents have. But the question remains: how did things stay so bad for so long?
- Connie Rice: Chair of the School Construction Bond Citizens' Oversight Committee, @ConnieRicePCN
- Jackie Goldberg: Former President of the Los Angeles Unified School Board
After Housing Approval Disneyland No Longer The Happiest Place On Earth ()
Disneyland is Los Angeles County’s largest employer; at one time it practically ran the City of Anaheim. Not anymore. The City Council voted 3 to 2 for a zoning change to allow 1,500 condos, including some for low-income people—just down the street from the happiest place on earth.
- Sarah Tully: Reporter for the Orange County Register
- Cynthia King: Director of Cal State Fullerton's Center for Entertainment and Tourism
A CD copy of Which Way L.A.? is a available by calling 1.888.600.5279.
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Which Way L.A.? is made possible in part by the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, and the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation, which supports study and research into policy issues of the Los Angeles region.
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