Robert D. Skeels, candidate for Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) School Board, stood with counselors, psychiatric social workers, school psychologists, and teacher librarians demanding LAUSD leadership vote no on depriving our students of 208 desperately needed professionals. The demonstrations were on Monday evening and Tuesday morning. Los Angeles City Council CD9 Candidate Ron Gochez was on hand as well. The community candidates support the community. Mr. Skeels also brought the topic up during the District 2 candidate debate on Monday evening. On Tuesday, under pressure from community activists, the board decided to vote against cutting services for our students.
Here's the press release from Monday:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 11, 2013
CONTACT: Sean Abajian, Campaign Manager
(213) 261-8651, firstname.lastname@example.org
WHEN: Monday, February 11 at 4:30PM
WHERE: LAUSD, 333 S Beaudry Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90017
WHO: Robert D. Skeels, candidate for LAUSD School Board
PRESS CONFERENCE AT LAUSD HEADQUARTERS
***Robert D. Skeels: LAUSD needs to provide our students with professionals ***
LOS ANGELES—On Monday Robert D. Skeels, candidate for Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) School Board, will stand with counselors, psychiatric social workers, school psychologists, and teacher librarians demanding LAUSD leadership vote no on depriving our students of 208 desperately needed professionals.
LAUSD Candidate Robert D. Skeels issued the following statement:
"For LAUSD to consider eliminating these position, vital to our students is unconscionable. On the heels of a national tragedy, and recent revelation by the The California Endowment that two-thirds of Californians surveyed said they would choose putting a counselor in every school over having more armed security, the district's decision couldn't be more out of touch with the communities it is supposed to serve.
Many of us worked hard to pass Proposition 30 in order to avoid these damaging cuts. Our students deserve so much better than this. We need more school librarians, counselors, psychologists, and social workers, not less.
More insulting is the fact that the Board will be voting on a plan to give away $50 million in iPads on the same day that they are voting to cut indispensable professionals who directly serve our students. According to research cited by Dr. Stephen Krashen 'ebooks only account for one-half of one percent of school library collections, and this is predicted to increase to only 7.8% in five years.' Rarely mentioned in iPad discussions is cases where this costly experiment has been tried, it has failed. Honywood Community Science School in Essex England spent £500,000 on iPads, and reported that more than half were broken within a year. With these two things in mind, we should be skeptical of calls that such expenditures will provide 21st century skills, which often amounts to students playing Angry Birds or using myspace.
Once more we see our district's highest level decision makers putting corporate greed in front of student need. This is one of the reasons my community asked me to run for school board, because they are tired of policies and budget priorities that put our students last. We demand that LAUSD retain the professionals who provide our students vital services."
Candidate website is http://www.robertdskeelsforschoolboard.org
Public education activist, researcher, and writer Robert D. Skeels has lived, worked, and organized in District 2 for over 18 years. He and his wife, Yoon Jung Lee, fought to save LAUSD Adult Schools. Robert's LAUSD campaign has broad community support with numerous volunteers and he is the only District 2 candidate endorsed by both United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) and Associated Administrators of Los Angeles (AALA). He is also endorsed by several national education experts, including former US Assistant Secretary of Education, Dr. Diane Ravitch. Campaign supporters include local immigrant rights organizations, classroom teachers, and community/parent leaders.