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Opinion

Opinion: Finally, Los Angeles has a pro-student school board

The new Los Angeles school board, the first with a pro-charter majority, meets for the first time Ju
Ref Rodriguez, center, speaks after being selected as the new school board president the Los Angeles Board of Education meeting Thursday.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: Ref Rodriguez, the new charter-friendly president of the Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education, gets it. United Teachers Los Angeles, the teachers union that opposed the new board members in the last election, does not. (“A new era begins as pro-charter majority selects Rodriguez to head L.A. school board,” July 6)

According to the article, “Rodriguez urged his colleagues to visualize a child every time they made a decision.” This is spot on. The school board needs to take this change not as an alignment with charter schools as much as an alignment with student-first decision making.

My kids, now adults, went to LAUSD schools. As a former employee of the district who went on to become a charter school principal, I can tell you that kids have not been at the center of decision-making in LAUSD.

This change is refreshing, and I hope it will spread to other places like the struggling Pasadena Unified School District. Let’s stop fighting and get to work.

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Wendy Zacuto, Playa del Rey

..

To the editor: It’s outrageous that the pro-charter school board members would suddenly ask for unity and to “turn away from the divisive politics of yesterday” when they themselves have been so truculently divisive.

In their campaigns, they indulged in the most despicable and dishonest mudslinging and negative campaigning ever seen in a school board election. They did this with millions in outside money from well-heeled charter supporters, vastly outspending their opponents.

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The people who bought the election expect the new board members to deliver the LAUSD schools over to private interests. As morally bankrupt as these charter shills have demonstrated themselves to be in their election campaigns, we can only expect exactly that.

Marc Wutschke, Los Angeles

The writer is an LAUSD teacher.

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