A plan by unionized Los Angeles Unified School District teachers to stage a one-day walkout in protest of anticipated layoffs was derailed today by a Los Angeles judge, who issued a restraining order barring the teachers from walking out of class.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge James Chalfont cited student health and safety as the reasons for granting the LAUSD's request for the restraining order.
United Teachers Los Angeles announced May 1 that the district's teachers would stage a one-day work stoppage Friday to protest planned layoffs and class-size increases approved by the school board in hopes of closing a huge budget deficit.
Superintendent Ramon Cortines called the planned work stoppage "not in the best interest of students" and "dangerous, illegal and irresponsible."
UTLA President A.J. Duffy said his union planned to conduct the walkout because "we have to stand up for our students because the district won't."
"We're calling on the superintendent and the school board to change course and make the right decision for our schools," Duffy said.
Union officials said they chose Friday for the walkout to ensure the least conflict with standardized testing.
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But district officials said the work stoppage would disrupt testing and jeopardize the health and safety of students at 1,000 early education centers and school campuses.
District officials said they were planning to deploy non-school-based personnel to assist administrators with supervision if the walkout took place.