LAUSD Turns Over Schools to Instructors

The Los Angeles Board of Education turned over control of 22 campuses to instructors in a surprise win for teachers.

The board considered recommendations from Superintendent Ramon Cortines Tuesday for the operation of  campuses under the Public School Choice program, which the board backed last year.  Eighty-five proposals were submitted by groups interested in managing 12 low-performing schools and 24 new campuses across the district.

After several weeks of review, Cortines made his recommendations last week for each of the affected campuses.  The proposed operators included charter school companies; collaborations of parents, teacher and local district administrators; and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's Partnership for Los Angeles Schools.

Charter schools were given three campuses and the mayor's Partnership for LA School received three.

The plan to allow outside groups to govern individual campuses has angered some education advocates, including the teachers' union, United Teachers Los Angeles. But given the board's approval of the process, UTLA helped some groups of teachers and local school administrators submit management proposals, and some of them are among the operators Cortines recommended.

UTLA President A.J. Duffy said last week he was pleased that Cortines had recommended that the parent/teacher/administrator teams operate more than three-quarters of the 36 schools up for bid. But he called on the school board to reject the superintendent's recommendation that outside operators, such as charter school companies, be given control of some campuses.

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