Demolition of long-closed West Valley schools to begin Monday, leaving empty lots
*UPDATED LA Unified will begin demolition Monday at the first of two schools to be razed in the West San Fernando Valley. But no new construction is planned, leaving empty lots in residential neighborhoods. The Oso Avenue and Highlander Road elementary schools have sat mostly empty for more than 30 years, becoming eyesores and a source of...
By Craig Clough | July 14, 2016
Nearly half of LAUSD students now eligible for free school lunches thanks to new program
Mikelah Wynn, 11, looked skeptically at the tall man in the suit who sat down with her and her friends as she opened up her breakfast Thursday morning. The man was Kevin Concannon, USDA Undersecretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services, who came from Washington, D.C., to her fifth-grade class in Winnetka to celebrate the...
By Mike Szymanski | March 10, 2016
Angry residents confront LAUSD over proposed West Hills high school that trumped a charter
LA Unified Local District Northwest Superintendent Vivian Ekchian faced an angry and skeptical group of West Hills residents Thursday evening as she presented the district’s plan to redevelop a long-shuttered and dilapidated elementary school into a high school serving 500 students. The anger stemmed from the school board’s sudden cancellation last month of a plan that had...
By Craig Clough | March 4, 2016
Just in: Porter Ranch schools relocated for gas leak might start return process this month; inspections are underway
Two Porter Ranch schools that were relocated during the methane gas leak are being checked for contamination inside every classroom, and the schools could begin moving back as early as this month, LA Unified officials said Tuesday. “Health inspectors are checking the inside of the schools before we move the children back,” Local District Northwest Superintendent...
By Mike Szymanski | March 1, 2016
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School board OKs first steps for Hale expansion at Highlander site, rejects charter school
In dual votes Tuesday about a long-vacant school in the west San Fernando Valley, the LA Unified school board halted a charter school that was previously proposed for the site and instead allowed a district school to pursue it. The school board gave a unanimous thumbs-up for Hale Charter Academy to pursue a proposal to develop a performing...
By Mike Szymanski | February 9, 2016
LA Unifed wooing parents of soon-to-close valley private school
In its latest effort to offset declining enrollment, LA Unified is wooing parents of children attending a private school in Woodland Hills that is shutting down after this academic year. The operators of Pinecrest Schools have notified parents that they intend to close the group’s last five campuses, a decision that creates a chance for...
By LA School Report | January 22, 2016
Reps for LAUSD, teachers union talk about computers, not salaries
Another bargaining session came and went today and still no contract agreement between LA Unified and the teachers union, UTLA. The district said in a press release, “union leaders weren’t ready to talk about raises at the table,” leaving the sides to focus, instead, on issues with the student-tracking system known as MiSiS, for My...
By LA School Report | September 10, 2014
UTLA could start another academic year without a contract
Despite a state budget deadline looming, it’s possible that LA Unified teachers will start yet another school year without a new contract. The district’s proposed spending budget for 2014-15, which must be approved by the school board and submitted to the state by July, includes a line item for teacher raises that remains to be negotiated with...
By Vanessa Romo | May 6, 2014
UTLA raises may be on the horizon but not negotiations
Within LA Unified’s proposed budget for 2014-2015, Superintendent John Deasy includes a line item for teacher raises. However, in the absence of a contract for the last three years between the district and the teachers union, United Teachers of Los Angeles, labor talks remain at a complete standstill, raising questions about just how much remains “TBD.” “Neither...
By Vanessa Romo | April 9, 2014
Defense rests in Vergara after a battle over dismissal stats
The defense rested its case today in Vergara v. California after an examination of an LA Unified administrator that was designed to show that the state laws under challenge did not impede the district’s effort to get rid of ineffective teachers. On Monday, court resumes with the plaintiffs’ opening a short rebuttal phase of the trial,...
By Michael Janofsky | March 21, 2014