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LAUSD School Board Election: What To Know About The Expensive, Hard-Fought Races




Hollywood High Teachers Assistant Yolanda Franco conducts class remotely on September 08, 2020 in Los Angeles, California.
Hollywood High Teachers Assistant Yolanda Franco conducts class remotely on September 08, 2020 in Los Angeles, California.
Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images

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For all the attention city council campaigns traditionally get, the most expensive local elections in Los Angeles this year have actually been the races for school board.

So far, outside political groups have spent more than $14.9 million trying to sway the outcomes of this year's L.A. Unified school board races.

That total sets a new "independent expenditure" record for any LAUSD campaign — and there are still two weeks left until voters decide the two competitive races on Nov. 3.

In LAUSD Board District 3, incumbent Scott Schmerelson is trying to overcome both challenger Marilyn Koziatek and a wave of spending against him by well-funded charter school advocates.

In the District 7 race, Patricia Castellanos and Tanya Ortiz Franklin are both seeking to replace the board's retiring swing vote — and both charter allies and LAUSD's teachers union see a chance to tip the balance of power on the board.

With files from LAist

Read the full piece on LAist

Guest:

Kyle Stokes, KPCC/LAist reporter covering K-12 education and the Los Angeles Unified School District; he tweets @kystokes