School Board Approves Moratorium on Charters

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Teachers and community picket outside the California Charter School Association's office in downtown Los Angeles on day two of the UTLA teachers' strike, Jan. 15, 2019

Teachers, HHS staff, parents, students and other members of the community picket outside the California Charter School Association's office in downtown Los Angeles on day two of the strike on Jan. 15, 2019.


Board calls for state study in passing resolution

Today the LAUSD School Board approved unanimously a historic UTLA contract that prioritizes what students need in their schools. This is a reaffirmation of the effectiveness of our 6-day strike and the overwhelming parent and public support for LA educators. Additionally, in a 5-1 vote, the School Board passed a resolution calling for a state study and an 8- to 10-month moratorium on new charters in the district until the study is complete.

The charter moratorium vote is a groundbreaking moment in the fight for public education in LA, one that is reflective of what UTLA members, parents and our communities have fought so hard for: A sustainable public school district that serves all students.
“LAUSD has joined the NAACP and other key organizations in calling on the state of California for a moratorium on charters,” said UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl. “This is a win for justice, transparency, and common sense. We need to invest in our existing schools, not follow a business model of unregulated growth when new schools are fundamentally not needed in LA.”
The California Charter Schools Association bused students to the meeting, leaving a day of instruction behind to attend. CCSA did so under the false pretense that the board was considering a ban of charter schools. Teary eyed students talked during public comment, thinking that their school would be closed if the resolution passed.
Charters have grown exponentially at LAUSD, from 10 in the 2000-01 school year to 277 this year, with the district now the largest charter school authorizer in the nation. The current oversaturation of charter schools means that more than 80 percent of charter schools cannot meet their projected enrollment numbers. This calls into question the charter industry’s assertion that their schools have waiting lists and underscores that there are already more than enough charter schools to meet demand.
Nick Melvoin, who disavows any responsibility over charter school regulation despite being on the school board of the largest charter school authorizer in the country, was the lone vote against the resolution.