Don’t minimize neighborhood schools
Re: “Broadway’s traditional students would be better served at Westminster,” (Argonaut letters, June 20).
The Mandarin immersion program, while a worthy endeavor, should never inconvenience, nor take precedence over the rights of local students.
The concept of neighborhood schools is as old as public education in the United States. Magnet programs, charters and experimental schools should be considered additional school choices for parents.
Busing, although somewhat successful for integration, was very disruptive to the lives of local parents. Parents prefer to have their children close to home for two or more reasons: First, close proximity is important for a child’s safety and security. Neighbors or relatives can care for sick children or be able to help in emergencies.
Second, children make close friendships, which continue after school and on weekends. So called play dates by car inconvenience parents and make it difficult to maintain close daily encounters. Reforms, if necessary, can be best addressed at the local school.
To me the underlying tone of the letter writer’s letter is seething with snobbery. It suggests preferential treatment of those gentrified families with the inference that only 80 local children do not deserve the privilege of walking to the closest school as did previous Broadway students. To young children, a several block radius is another world.
We have to look at the example of Walgrove Avenue Elementary School, which was a receiver school for inner city students for many years. Because of changing demographics, specifically the death of many older residents, and the birth of a new generation of children, the school is now a neighborhood school.
At a time about 10 years ago, the Los Angeles Unified School District proposed to build a new school on the campus, which would have eliminated most of the playground. At that time I wrote and called, enlisting the help of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to quash this proposal.
This case is similar. As the area continues to change with the birth of a new generation of children, Broadway will need every available classroom. Do not destroy nor minimize the importance of neighborhood schools.
former Walgrove teacher
Doubtful of change with new mayor
What will be different with Eric Garcetti versus Antonio Villaraigosa as mayor of Los Angeles (Re: “Garcetti Receives Warm Westside Welcome,” Argonaut, June 20)?
Now that Garcetti has been elected to a four-year term of office, what will he actually do?
His non-committal, politics as usual approach at his recent Mar Vista appearance does little to suggest there will be much difference with the new boss versus the old one.
Where are the concrete positions on pension reform and reducing the burden on residents as it relates to the bureaucracy of local government?
Where is the commitment to getting tough at the bargaining table where city employees are enjoying generous salaries and raises while most in the private sector are lucky to have a job, and while those in minimum wage positions are working two and three jobs to pay the rent and put food on the table?
While Garcetti did the politically expedient thing in opposing the Los Angeles International Airport Specific Plan Amendment Study that secured large blocks of votes in his municipal runoff victory, is he going to use the bully pulpit to actually prevent expansion versus modernization?
Why is he unable to be specific in his plans to oppose this runway change?
Garcetti even refused to make any commitments on future appointees to the Board of Airport Commissioners who could oppose the current expansion recently approved by the Los Angeles City Council.
It is difficult for me to believe any change will occur on the watch of Garcetti.
His inability to take a tough position on anything tells me the next four years will be an extension of the same laissez-faire attitude of city government that is detached from economic reality and those who reside west of the 405 freeway.
Make Bradley Terminal concessions available to greater public
Re: “New Tom Bradley Terminal draws rave reviews” (Argonaut, June 27).
While the newly remodeled Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport will be nice for international travelers and will make a good impression on tourists arriving in Los Angeles, it is disappointing that the more than 60 new dining and retail shops, lounge areas and multimedia features will be inaccessible to, and will not also be enjoyed by the general public, local residents and other non-passenger visitors.
All of the new features of the remodeled terminal are located in the passenger boarding gate and baggage check sections, which are off-limits to non-passengers and the general public. If the building of new shops and restaurants for the Bradley Terminal remodel project had been in non-boarding gate areas, retailers would make more money from their stores by also being accessible to the general public, local residents and other visitors besides just the plane passengers, employees of LAX and TSA staff, for example.
If LAX wants to expand the north runway into Westchester and Playa del Rey, how about a compromise or deal being made to permit access to the new dining and retail shops in the boarding gate areas of the Bradley Terminal to those of us who are either homeowners against expansion, or other local residents, for our shopping and dining enjoyment?