2022 LAUSD ELECTIONS: Endorsements
These Candidates Would Give LAUSD Parents Power
Voting for Rocio Rivas, Marvin Rodriguez, and anyone but Nick Melvoin would put parent voices back on the Los Angeles School Board.
- Rocio Rivas’ campaign website
When Patricia Castellanos lost to Tanya Ortiz Franklin in the November 2020 general election, public school parents were denied the opportunity to be represented by one of their own on the LAUSD School Board. Like all of the other board members, Franklin does not have any school-age children. Having been backed by charter school industry support, her election gave those representing publicly funded private schools a majority on the board.
The effects of Franklin’s victory were immediate. After electing a new Board President and the Chair of the Committee of the Whole, the first action of this charter industry-backed majority was to keep the Parent Engagement and Special Education Committees from holding meetings. Not only did public school parents not have a voice on the board, but they were also shut out from participating in important forums for advocating for their students’ needs.
While parents have been silenced, the charter industry-backed majority has taken steps to weaken public education in Los Angeles. Over $281,000 of COVID funds was used to hire a consultant in an attempt to push through a Betsy DeVos spending plan that would have reduced funding in some schools. Millions of dollars in charter school debts were forgiven without any public discussion. Public schools were slated for closure with plans to turn over the campuses to charter schools. Vitaly important programs for children with severe special education needs are being eliminated with students being forced to travel greater distances to get the services they need or be forced into mainstreaming with their typical peers.
On June 7, 2022, voters in the even-numbered board districts have a chance to start repairing this damage. All three seats are currently held by board members who are loyal to the charter school industry and a loss of any of them will give public school loyalists a majority. Even…