More Big Cuts to Be Made at Los Angeles Unified Schools
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Budget cuts at LA Unified aren't quite as deep as expected, but almost 12,000 pink slips have gone out, and adult classes and other programs are scheduled for cancellation. After four years of concessions, the teachers' union is being asked to give up still more. We talk with the President of the UTLA and the Superintendent of Schools. Also, besieged by state budget cuts and student demand, Santa Monica College wants to provide extra classes at a higher cost. Is that legal? Would it effectively privatize public education? On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, the "Solid South" isn't solid after all.
Banner image: Members of UTLA attend the 'Stop the Insanity' rally on March 13, 2012, demanding that pink slips be rescinded immediately
Santa Monica College to Adopt Tiered Pricing System ()
Faced with state funding cuts, Santa Monica College can't keep up with student demand. So the governing board has approved a plan to provide extra classes after the regular ones are full. There's a catch. Regular classes will cost $46 a unit, but the extras will be $180. We hear more from SMC President Chui Tsang and from SMC student trustee Joshua Scuteri, who cast his advisory vote against the two-tier pricing plan.
Note: Santa Monica College owns the license for KCRW, and provides space on the campus for this radio station.
The Rationing of Public Education ()
LA's elected school board passed a preliminary worst-case budget last night with just one dissenting vote. Although the cuts were not as severe as expected, the $6 billion plan would still eliminate thousands of jobs, close all the adult schools and cut some after-school programs as well as music and art at elementary schools. Some 11,700 pink slips have already been sent out. There are other options. Superintendent John Deasy wants concessions from labor unions he says could keep some programs open.
Three initiatives on the November, 2012 ballot all could further impact public education. They are:
The Southern Primaries and the GOP ()
Rick Santorum won both Alabama and Mississippi yesterday. Newt Gingrich took second place in states even he said he needed. Santorum is claiming he's now the real, conservative alternative to Mitt Romney, who came in third. If Romney can't capture the Southern conservative base of the party, why is he still the likely GOP nominee?
- Maggie Haberman: Politico.com, @maggiepolitico
- Gary Langer: ABC News, @LangerResearch
- Jack Campbell: Public Strategy Associates
- Chris Kromm: Institute for Southern Studies, @chriskromm
- Ken Warren: St. Louis University
Which Way L.A.? is made possible in part by the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation, the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert 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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