LA Unified pays tribute to longest serving board member

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L.A. Unified's school board paid tribute on Tuesday to its longest serving board member. KPCC’s Adolfo Guzman-Lopez has the story.

Adolfo Guzman-Lopez: Voters in the west San Fernando Valley first elected Julie Korenstein to the school board 22 years ago. At the time area parents opposed busing for desegregation and a year-round instructional calendar meant to reduce classroom crowding. The teachers union became a strong Korenstein supporter. Too strong, said re-election opponents who failed five times to unseat her.

More than a dozen public school administrators, the teachers’ union president and school advocates had nothing but praise for Korenstein at yesterday’s scheduled board meeting. School district area superintendent Jean Brown said Korenstein always took care of her constituents.

Jean Brown: On a regular basis you’d call me when you were visiting a school or driving around the neighborhood, "Jean, I’m outside Chase, they need to be painted. Tell Henry, get the board report ready. Jean, I’m at Langdon, they need a new playground, get the board report ready."

Guzman-Lopez: Julie Korenstein announced last year she wouldn’t run for reelection. Voters elected San Fernando councilwoman Nury Martinez to replace Korenstein on the board next month.