Chinese chicken salad with three sides is served to Tustin public school students through a new, federally funded after-school supper program.
Amid all the bad news about budget cuts to public schools there is a bright spot: More money is now available for free and subsidized school meals, and not just for school breakfast and lunch.
For about a decade, federal grants allowed schools to serve after-school snacks like juice and crackers. But youth nutrition advocate Matt Sharp says educators had concerns about the program.
“Which is that the amount of snacks are too small, too few, driving some students to run off campus to purchase much less healthy options from vendors outside school gates or convenience stores,” he said.
A year and a half ago, a boost in the federal allocation expanded that snack into a meal. The goal was to tackle two problems: rising childhood obesity and families’ growing inability to buy healthy food.
The Tustin Unified School District is the first in Southern California to offer students supper after school. A third of the schools in that district, including Marjorie Veeh Elementary, currently serve an after-school meal.
Los Angeles schools Supt. John Deasy speaks during a press conference at South Region High School #2. Deasy says he believes LAUSD has "an incredibly strong application" should the district choose to apply for a Race to the Top grant.
For the first time ever, individual school districts may apply for the Obama Administration’s highly competitive Race to the Top grants — and that could mean good news for Los Angeles Unified.
LAUSD has wanted the money, but it couldn’t get the respect. Just last year, Gov. Jerry Brown refused to support its joint application with public school districts in Long Beach, San Francisco and Sacramento.
A change in the rules means districts that want their reform policies to line up with the Obama administration’s may compete for grants up to $25 million on their own.
The requirements are the same: programs must target low-income students and must factor those kids’ progress into teacher evaluations.
That’s been a major point of tension so far. Unions, including United Teachers Los Angeles, have opposed including student test scores in job performance assessments.
James F Clay/Flickr
LAUSD will pay a school district manager $200,000 in cash and benefits to settle sexual harassment allegations against a former superintendent.
The Los Angeles Unified School District will pay a school district manager $200,000 in cash, along with lifetime benefits, to settle sexual harassment allegations against a former superintendent.
It started two summers ago when senior LAUSD facilities manager Scot Graham accepted an invitation from then-Superintendent Ramon Cortines to spend the weekend at Cortines’ Kern County ranch.
Graham says Cortines made inappropriate verbal and physical advances, but Cortines has since said that what happened was "consensual spontaneous adult behavior."
Two months ago, nearly a year after Cortines retired, Graham’s lawyer told the school district he planned to file a sexual harassment lawsuit.
"The board concluded it was the best use of the district’s resources to resolve it early with probably less expense and less disruption to the district," said district lawyer Linda Savitt.
Graham agreed to retire at the end of the month. He’ll receive the $200,000 settlement from LAUSD’s general fund.
clcv/Flickr Creative Commons
Fed up with LAUSD’s continuing budget cuts, angry activists have launched a campaign to recall school board member Nury Martinez (pictured above).
Fed up with LAUSD’s continuing budget cuts, angry activists have launched the first phase of a campaign to recall school board member Nury Martinez.Martinez represents L.A. Unified schools from San Fernando to Sylmar, and parts of Pacoima.
The group’s grievances against Martinez include her support of plans to shut down adult education and occupational centers throughout the district. Critics also oppose her support for charter schools.
The opponents must have a formal petition approved and then get signatures from about 33,000 voters in Martinez’s district to force a recall election. She is the second LAUSD board member targeted by activists upset over the board’s budget cuts. A separate effort to recall school board president Monica Garcia was filed last month.
Tami Abdollah / KPCC
A former teacher's aide at Gratts Elementary School was charged with more than a dozen felonies after allegedly committing lewd acts on a 12-year-old.
A former teacher's aide at Gratts Elementary School in the Westlake district has been charged with more than a dozen felonies after allegedly committing lewd acts on a boy for nearly three years, beginning when the child was 12 years old.
Jorge Luis Dominguez was arrested Thursday and quickly fired by the Los Angeles Unified School District.
Prosecutors said the victim was not a Gratts student, but Dominguez met him when he worked as a youth sports coach at the Los Angeles Academy of Arts & Enterprise west of downtown. The 25-year-old allegedly abused the boy between June 5, 2009, and his arrest last week, according to the District Attorney's Office.
The 25-year-old was charged with 10 counts of lewd act on a child under 14 and one count each of lewd act on a child 14 or older and possession of child pornography.