Teachers Know Best for LAUSD

Re: “Voters Should Flunk Zimmer,” Letters, April 13

The letter from Roy Reel attacking a Venice High School teacher’s support for LAUSD Board President Steve Zimmer over election opponent Nick Melvoin is completely off-base. The words of a teacher with 33 years of experience should carry more weight than the opinion of an outsider from Culver City.

Roy Reel’s letter is just another outsider like the Koch brothers, Bloomberg and the Waltons telling Los Angeles residents
what to do! Mr. Reel obviously does not believe in public education, as shown by his support of charter schools and Arne Duncan. Privately operated charter schools are just that — private!

Those charters are money-making facilities for their sponsors. Charter schools have been found by the ACLU to discriminate. They do not provide equal access to all children. To select a candidate who backs separation, elitism and discrimination is a slap in the face to the children and teachers of public schools. To select a candidate who taught with Teach for America for two years while waiting to pass his bar exam is a bad joke!

As far as who should get an “F,” it is clearly Mr. Reed.

Steve Zimmer is an outstanding member of the LAUSD board and deserves to be re-elected

Cecelia Boskin, Mar Vista

Keep the ‘Public’ in Public Education

Re: “The Argonaut’s March 7 Primary Election Endorsements,” Editorial, March 2

Please reconsider your endorsement of Nick Melvoin and endorse LAUSD Board President Steve Zimmer in the May 16 runoff election.

Even though I do not live in Los Angeles, I take great interest in efforts to protect public education from privatization; in other words, I oppose more charter schools exempt from state laws designed to protect our tax dollars. Zimmer’s opponent is enthusiastically pro-charter and wants to push co-location of charters onto existing public schools. He’s made auditing the district for available co-location land one of his top priorities.

What will this mean for Venice High School, which is adjacent to Santa Monica? From what I’ve read, these independent charter schools owe LA Unified close to a half a billion dollars in services and property taxes, don’t require their teachers to get ESL credentials to address the needs of English learners, and conveniently fail to offer programs for the severely disabled. These negative consequences will spill over into Santa Monica, a community dedicated to closing the achievement gap, which Melvoin’s policies contradict.

Please endorse Zimmer, not Melvoin. Keep the ‘public’ in public education.

Linda Piera-Avila

Santa Monica