Los Angeles is ground zero for the privatization and DPE Movement (DPE=Destroy Public Education). The billionaires have pumped millions of dollars into races for the local school board. Last year, they knocked out Steve Zimmer, president of the board, with the most expensive local school board race in American history. Their small majority selected a businessman, Austin Beutner, as superintendent of schools despite his lack of any education experience. A key board member, Ref Rodriguez, Charter School founder, voted for Beutner, then left the board after he was convicted of campaign finance violations.

The race for his open seat will be held this spring. The UTLA just endorsed the extraordinarily experienced and articulate Jackie Goldberg. Jackie, if elected, will be a powerful voice for sound education policy.

UTLA endorses Jackie Goldberg for LAUSD School Board

The UTLA House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly tonight to endorse Jackie Goldberg in the special election for the District 5 seat on the Los Angeles Unified School Board.

Goldberg’s resume stacks up like no other: She was a classroom teacher for 17 years before serving on the LAUSD School Board, on the LA City Council, and in the California State Assembly, where she chaired the Education Committee.

Goldberg has been an unapologetic voice for the role of LAUSD as an essential civic institution in our city—a voice that’s urgently needed as the board considers Superintendent Austin Beutner’s plan to break LAUSD into 32 networks. This so-called portfolio reform has been tried in many cities, where it has ignited parent anger, increased school closings, deepened segregation and disparities between schools, and brought no proven benefit in student learning.

“We look forward to Jackie bringing her special brand of passion and integrity to the School Board and for the people of District 5 to once again have a voice on the board,” UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl said. “Jackie understands that our schools don’t need failed privatization schemes but instead need investment in lower class sizes; more nurses, counselors, and librarians; and other fundamental student needs.”

Ref Rodriguez stepped down from the District 5 seat in July after pleading guilty to a felony conspiracy charge and a series of misdemeanors for money laundering during his 2015 election campaign. For nearly a year, Rodriguez ignored calls from the community to step down, staying in place until he could be the deciding vote in the controversial hiring of non-educator Beutner.

The election to fill the open seat will be held March 5, 2019, with a runoff if needed on May 14.