Quality Schools and Teacher Seniority
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State law entitles all California students to equal education, but they aren’t getting it. As the budget crunch leads to lay-offs every Spring, the lowest performing schools lose the most teachers and chaos results in the Fall. Are seniority rules making things worse? Later on - Arizona has stirred a political hornets’ nest with its new law against illegal immigration. We’ll talk with the man who wrote it and with critics who call it an invitation to racial profiling.
Banner Image: LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 4: Students occupy the hallway outside the office of the university chancellor at University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) to protest education funding cuts and rising tuition on March 4, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. Thousands of students and educators from elementary, middle and high schools, and colleges and universities are holding marches, rallies and class walkouts across California today as part of a nationwide effort calling for no more cuts to education. University of California system student fees have increased 61 percent over the past five years and costs have gone up for students of California community colleges which, until the property tax rollback of 1978, provided tuition-free to all high school graduates. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
Fear, Loathing and Huzzahs for Arizona’s Immigration Law ()
Arizona has stirred a political hornets’ nest with its new law against illegal immigration. Undocumented aliens are accused of crimes up to and including murder, and the state’s accused of racial profiling, ethnic cleansing and Nazism. Over the weekend, Sarah Palin gave the new law her blessing. Today opponents are making another effort to stop it in court. We’ll talk with the man who wrote the new law. We’ll hear about the US Constitution and the lack of action on Capitol Hill. We’ll also get the perspective of a veteran Mexican diplomat.
Layoffs and Seniority in the LAUSD ()
Last week, Judge William Highberger ruled that teacher lay-offs planned for three inner-city middle schools would deprive students of their constitutional right to an equal education. Gompers, Markham and Liechty are three of the lowest performing schools in LA Unified. Because the state budget crisis requires cuts, the District sent pink-slips to between 46 and 60% of their teachers. In more affluent neighborhoods, the average was less than 15%. The judge found that educational opportunity would decline disproportionately and ordered the District to find a better way. But it’s not going to be easy because of seniority rules.
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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