Nonprofit groups get nod to run LAUSD schools

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After neighborhood meetings, a vote involving thousands of people, and expert review, L.A. Unified’s superintendent released today the list of groups he’s recommending to administer 36 new and low-performing campuses.

Teacher groups and local school district administrators got the nod from Superintendent Ramon Cortines to run about half the 36 campuses. Cortines also gave the go-ahead to four charter school operators.

The Partnership for L.A. Schools, founded by L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, got the thumbs up to run an elementary school and a middle school.

The overhauls take effect next fall. They’ll affect schools that serve 38,000 L.A. Unified students from San Pedro and Gardena to Baldwin Hills and the San Fernando Valley.

Superintendent Cortines said the vote two weeks ago by teachers, students and parents of the schools in question was a minor factor in his decision.

"I made that very clear, that it would be about the plan for improvement, that this wasn’t a contest, this wasn’t a contest. Certainly I looked at the number of parents that voted and did not vote."

The district’s teachers union filed a lawsuit against the reforms but helped teachers submit proposals. District administrators warn that L.A. Unified may lose state education dollars if the school board approves some of the nonprofits Cortines recommended to run the schools.