Ellen Lubic, director of Joining Forces for Education and a professor of public policy in Los Angeles, here describes the numerous failings of Superintendent John Deasy and calls for an independent audit and grand jury investigation. The article has gone viral, receiving nearly 700,000 hits since it was published by CityWatch.
“Finally the lack of transparency of the mismanaged leadership of LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy is seeing the light of day. The excellent investigative journalism by the LA Times education reporter, Howard Blume, and KPCC’s detailed and informed reporter, Annie Gilbertson, has opened up the stench of the secret deals and waste of taxpayer funds that Deasy manipulated throughout his tenure, and is now exposed for all to see.
“Many in the public were shocked that his contract was renewed last October after the $1 Billion iPad scandal was published not only in LA, but all over the US. And now we have the proof of the secret deals he cut with Apple and Pearson.
“We see as evidence the actual emails and signed contracts that he put taxpayers on the hook for in so many ways, from using 30 year payback with interest of the Construction Bond money he negotiated to pay for this fiasco, to claiming it was a civil rights issue for inner city students to have these top of the line but soon to be obsolete devices, when actually it was a Broad Academy-taught business model for huge “free market” profits.
“Deasy has been a disaster at LAUSD from the beginning when Eli Broad and Tony Villaraigosa imposed his hiring without further search by the Board of Education. This power play led to ongoing conniving and mendacity that is now beginning to open up for public inspection.”
Lubic cites a number of actions by Deasy that should be reviewed by credible investigators, beginning with the $1 billion iPad plan that went bad when reporters learned of Deasy’s contacts with Apple and Pearson before the bidding process. She adds:
“Deasy’s first big decision to rush all Mira Monte teachers into “teacher jail” so as to punish them for guilt by association with the one teacher who was an abuser, caused many fine teachers to lose their good reputations while they and the young students they served were permanently traumatized.
“We the taxpayers are paying ongoing for the many lawsuits that were initiated due to this LAUSD mismanagement. The plethora of hidden lawsuits filed by parents, wounded teachers, and so many others, will strain the over burdened taxpayers of LA County for years to come, due to Deasy’s lack of judgment and leadership ability…..
“Thereafter, a continuing series of terrible management by Deasy is clear to one and all, from embedding charter schools to comply with his mentor Eli Broad and the Wall Street privatizers of public education, to firing teachers for no apparent reason and/or sending them to teacher jail as he did with the award winning and widely respected and beloved choir director at Crenshaw HS, his testifying for the Vergara plaintiffs against his own teachers so he could “fire teachers rapidly,” to making Jaime Aquino take the fall for the iPads fiasco, and now Deasy is still spinning it that it was exclusively all Aquino’s fault when Deasy actually hired Aquino only weeks after becoming Superintendent and knowing Jaime has just worked for Pearson.”
“Now, with all this evidence that shows his poor leadership skills and mendacious approach in covering up his faults with spin doctoring, we still ask why he has not been fired? We should all be calling for an external independent audit of these possibly fraudulent, but definitely mismanaged, spending of our public funds to the detriment of our public schools and the students and parents. And we should further all be demanding a Grand Jury investigation of this putrid affair.
“The LAUSD Board of Education is Deasy’s boss, and We the People are their boss, so please make your voices loud and clear to them, and to the media, and to each other, that those complicit in this mess that is LAUSD must all be investigated right now with both an external independent audit and a Grand Jury investigation.”