Commentary: The long goodbye, the no goodbye, the tears of Cortines
That was quite a board meeting yesterday, with more emotion on display than Nixon or LBJ ever showed in announcing their decisions to leave the White House. The first wave came in The Long Goodbye to Bennett Kayser, whose bid for a second term was thwarted by a member of the group he most detests,...
By Michael Janofsky | June 24, 2015
Zimmer still angry about Rodriguez campaign but vows to work together
Drinking too much at a work dinner or hitting on a co-worker’s spouse can make things truly uncomfortable at the office. But what about publicly damning a future colleague before his first day on the job? That’s the situation LA Unified school board Vice President Steve Zimmer faces, now that Ref Rodriguez has defeated his good...
By Vanessa Romo | May 22, 2015
Buoyed by millions, Rodriguez beats Kayser for District 5 board seat
In the most of expensive and vitriolic of all three LA Unified board races, Bennett Kayser lost to Ref Rodriguez in the battle to represent District 5. Shortly after polls closed Rodriguez cemented an early lead, and Kayser, who had hoped for a second term, was never able to catch up. “This is a historic victory, as...
By Vanessa Romo | May 20, 2015
Zimmer ‘damns’ Rodriguez and his supporters for attacks on Kayser
* UPDATED If Ref Rodriguez wins election tomorrow, he’s got no friend in Steve Zimmer. Rodriguez is the challenger in the race for LA Unified school board District 5 against Bennett Kayser, easily the most heated of the three board elections. A loss by Kayser could shift the ideological balance of the seven member board...
By Vanessa Romo | May 18, 2015
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District 5 candidate asks Kayser to retract claim of endorsement
Andrew Thomas, who finished third behind Ref Rodriguez and Bennett Kayser in the District 5 school board primary election, has complained to Kayser that an invitation to a Kayser fundraiser this afternoon incorrectly says Thomas is supporting him in the May 19 runoff. An email from Kayser’s campaign circulated yesterday describes Kayser as “The choice...
By LA School Report | May 1, 2015
UTLA pulls back campaign spending on Kayser in shift to Schmerelson
Despite only modest spending on behalf of Bennett Kayser in the race to represent LA Unified’s board District 5, the teachers union said today it’s not abandoning him in the May 19 run off against reform darling, Ref Rodriguez. According to the latest data from the LA City Ethics Commission, the political action committee connected...
By Vanessa Romo | April 24, 2015
Can a $25,000 giveaway increase voter turnout in District 5?
Despite hundreds of thousands of dollars spent on the race by supporters, voter turnout in the District 5 LA Unified school board primary in March was pretty dreadful, with only 12 percent of registered voters coming to the polls. But now a nonprofit dedicated to getting more Latinos to the polls seems to think a...
By Craig Clough | April 20, 2015
Rodriguez opens big money lead over Kayser in District 5 campaign
With the May 19 runoff elections five weeks from tomorrow, Ref Rodriguez has opened a huge money lead over incumbent Bennett Kayser for the District 5 school board seat. Rodriguez, a charter school official, has built a nearly 3-to-1 edge in individual contributions, raising $26,896 to Kayser’s $9,575 through April 4, the latest figures from...
By LA School Report | April 13, 2015
Analysis: A deal with the teachers soon may carry a Kayser message
* UPDATED Could a deal between LA Unified and its teachers union, UTLA, be close at hand? The answer is a definite maybe, judging by the accelerated schedule of meetings with the mediator trying to bring the sides together. Two more sessions are scheduled — today and tomorrow. If that’s a sign of progress leading...
By Michael Janofsky | April 9, 2015
Charter group makes initial spend for Rodriguez LAUSD board seat
They’re off… and spending. Over the last 10 days the California Charter School Association political action committee has resumed pumping in money to help Ref Rodriguez win the District 5 seat on the LA Unified school board in the May 19 runoff. The group has spent $18,347 on two flier mailings and one phone banking session....
By Vanessa Romo | March 30, 2015