Vergara trial ends, with CA teacher laws hanging in the balance
Lawyers from both sides in Vergara v California — the state’s most significant teacher rights case in two decades — unleashed their final arguments today, in a last attempt to amplify their own case and destroy their opponent’s. The case is now in the hands of state Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu, who gave the...
By Mark Harris | March 27, 2014
Laws must be struck down, plaintiffs say in their closing
Via The Associated Press LOS ANGELES — An attorney representing nine California public school students told a judge Thursday that laws making it too hard to fire bad teachers and retain good ones are preventing students from obtaining a decent education and must be struck down. Theodore Boutrous Jr. made his assertions in a closing...
By LA School Report | March 27, 2014
Vergara witness says state laws governing teachers work
The battle of the experts continued today in Vergara vs. California as an expert in labor economics and public policy called by the defense provided rationales for keeping in place the state laws governing teachers that are under challenge in the case. Jesse Rothstein, a professor at Cal-Berkeley and a former senior economist on the...
By Mark Harris | March 6, 2014
In Vergara, witness says districts can overcome ineffective teachers
The defense in Vergara v California began its case today, calling to the witness stand a veteran educator whose testimony about identifying and dealing with ineffective teachers came in stark contrast to the views of earlier witnesses in the case. Robert Fraisse, whose career included serving as superintendent in three California school districts, appeared to...
By Mark Harris | March 5, 2014
Vergara lawyers await decision on whether to let case proceed
After a one-week recess, the court resumes tomorrow in the case of Vergara vs. California. Attorneys for both the defense and the nine student plaintiffs are gearing up for what could turn out to be a critical juncture in this landmark case. Before Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu is whether to throw the case out...
By Mark Harris | March 3, 2014
Vergara plaintiffs file response, arguing to keep the trial going
Plaintiffs today in Vergara v. California, a case challenging state teacher laws, submitted their opposition to the defendants’ motion for judgment, which was filed with the California Superior Court last week. Defendants are asking the court to throw out the case for a lack of evidence. The plaintiffs’ response emphasizes the “compelling and overwhelming evidence” that...
By LA School Report | February 26, 2014
Vergara defense team: plaintiffs failed to reach the bar
At 10:25 this morning, after they got their final documents entered into evidence, the plaintiffs in Vergara vs. California rested. That was the signal to Susan Carson, a lawyer for the state, to inform Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu that the state and teachers’ unions would file papers later in the day, asking him to...
By Mark Harris | February 20, 2014
Defense tries hard to undermine an expert in Vergara trial
Arun Ramanathan, Executive Director of The Education Trust–West, a group that works for high academic achievement, returned to the witness stand today for more questions by the defense, aimed at undermining his credibility, research and right to be considered an expert. As one of the plaintiffs’ key experts in the landmark trial, Vergara vs. California,...
By Mark Harris | February 14, 2014
More ‘ineffective teacher’ testimony, even without Vergara
After the first week of the groundbreaking trial Vergara vs. California in a California superior court, lawyers and witnesses talked a lot about ineffective teachers, arcane rules for dismissing them and how much money it costs. One thing they didn’t talk about was Beatriz Vergara. The lawsuit in her name — she’s an LA Unified...
By Mark Harris | January 31, 2014