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2 LAUSD roles now 1, UTLA president takes case to talk radio

LA School Report | January 29, 2015



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The Associated Administrators of Los Angeles and LA Unified reached an agreement last week to consolidate two positions into one. The role of “assistant principal” and “instructional specialist” as of July 1 will be merged into the role of “assistant principal elementary” or “assistant principal secondary.”

The change was explained by AALA in its weekly newsletter: “APs and ISs have similar duties and responsibilities at school sites and often are used interchangeably. However, APs earn seniority while instructional specialists are temporary advisers and do not earn seniority. ISs may be released from their positions at any time with no recourse. Some superintendents have encouraged principals to use the budget process to replace APs with ISs which has destabilized schools, caused job insecurity and decreased the number of APs throughout the District. Consolidation will afford greater protections to all while stabilizing school staffs.”

Caputo-Pearl on KABC 790

Alex Caputo-Pearl, president of the LA Unified teachers union, UTLA, appeared yesterday morning on the KABC 790 radio show McIntire In the Morning to give his response to a sharp letter from LA Unified Superintendent Ramon Cortines that criticized the union’s contract demands as unreasonable and a path to severe layoffs in the district.

There weren’t any huge surprises in Caputo-Pearl’s comments, but his appearance on the show along with the Cortines letter certainly illustrates how both sides are ramping up their PR campaigns as contract negotiations appear to be stalling.

“We were very surprised and disappointed in his letter… We think the letter is just scare tactics,” Caputo-Pearl said on the show. He also added, “[Cortines] comes across saying our demands aren’t fiscally possible, when we’ve got hundreds of millions of dollars that have been put into the iPads, the MiSiS, unnecessary legal costs, we’ve got a bunch of six-figure salaries still hanging out downtown that came in under John Deasy.”

Negotiations resume today.

Board election boiling down again to unions vs. charters 

A quick look at the money coming into the LA Unified board district 5 race shows that it’s fast building up to the usual battle between the teachers union and charter schools.

Among independent expenditures, the teachers union, UTLA, has invested $4,601.52 on behalf of incumbent Bennett Kayser while the political action committee for the California Charter Schools Association has spent $28,574.80 on behalf of Ref Rodriguez, a charter executive.

So far, neither of the other contested races, in districts 3 and 7, has drawn any outside spending, according to the LA City Ethics Commission. But it’s still early. The election is March 3.

Heroes in Education Awards Dinner

LAUSD school board President Richard Vladovic is hosting the 2015 Heroes in Education Awards Dinner tonight at 6 p.m. tonight at the Carson Civic Center. The event will “honor an array of individuals including teachers, administrators, parents, custodians, community partners and volunteers from across LAUSD’s 7th Board District who have distinguished themselves in supporting quality education and student achievement,” according to a district press release.

This is the first such event in District 7 since 2008.

LA Unified leads country in teachers earning top certification

The district said last week 128 of its teachers earned the profession’s highest credential. It was the most in the country for the second year in the row.

The credential awarded by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards typically takes up to two years to complete, according to a district press release.

“I’m very proud of the dedicated teachers we have and their commitment to demonstrate their expertise and to push themselves to a higher level,” Peggy Taylor Presley, who directs the Teacher Support Unit for L.A. Unified, said in a statement.

Meatless Monday campaign 

Actress Holland Roden, who co-stars in in the MTV show “Teen Wolf,” has launched a Meatless Monday poster campaign for the Humane Society of the United States with an unveiling at Hamilton High School, according to LAUSD’s Facebook page, which added that the district “supports the program by offering a meatless menu items on Mondays as well as a daily vegetarian option.”

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