L.A. Times education reporter: Oblivious or in the tank?

Oct. 25

By Chris Reed

The Los Angeles Times is the biggest newspaper in the state by far, presumably staffed with veteran reporters with a BS detector. As it turns out, the reporter on one of their most important beats — the Los Angeles Unified School District — is either thick as a brick or a union stenographer.

The story is about how school district boss John Deasy is struggling to get United Teachers Los Angeles to go along with an application for $40 million in Race to the Top funds from the Obama administration.

Reporter Teresa Watanabe actually buys the UTLA’s lame lie that it opposes the application because it might cost millions to administer!!!!!

 Faced with a looming deadline, Los Angeles schools chief John Deasy on Wednesday urged the teachers union to lay aside its concerns and back a federal grant application that could bring $40 million to the cash-strapped district.

If the Los Angeles Unified School District wins a federal Race to the Top grant, Deasy said, it could restore hundreds of jobs for teachers, counselors and others to help middle and high school students stay on track for graduation.

‘It’s a critical opportunity in these painful fiscal times,’ he said.

But so far United Teachers Los Angeles has not endorsed the application, leaving the district short of meeting the required support from the superintendent, school board president and teachers union. Deasy said all parties must sign off on the application by Friday to make the Oct. 30 deadline.

UTLA President Warren Fletcher said the union was concerned that the grant would not cover all the costs of implementing the district’s proposal. The district’s draft application proposes a $43.3-million budget, potentially requiring $3.3 million from general coffers that is equivalent to the cost of 39 teachers, he said.

‘We need to make sure it’s budgetarily sustainable,’ Fletcher said. ‘We don’t want to mortgage our future.'”

Incredibly enough, it’s not until the ninth paragraph that Watanabe even mentions that “another sticking point” was that the Obama administration would only give the grant to districts that had meaningful teacher evaluations based partly on their students’ performances.

Yo, Teresa!!! Where have you been for three years? Race to the Top grants being killed by teachers fighting for the status quo have been in the news the whole time!

Watanabe is either the most naive person in American journalism or the most in the union tank.

Dumb de dumb dumb.

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