In September, the school board voted to pass Resolution 026-22/23 to increase oversight of charter co-location and reduce the impact on neighborhood schools in LAUSD. A resolution like this would not have passed if there was a pro-charter company majority on the school board.

But during the hearing, it was revealed that the district has been blatantly misrepresenting their co-location policy as a state mandate when that’s simply not true. When questioned by the school board during the September 26 hearing, LAUSD’s Charter School Division director José Cole-Gutiérrez admitted that the district has been giving away campus space to co-locating charters based on their own definition— a definition that goes beyond what Proposition 39 state law requires. Neighborhood schools being co-located by charter companies have been told by the district countless times that under state law, any room without a full-time teacher assigned is considered “empty” and up for grabs by the co-locating charter.

VIDEO: At 2:11:27 of the board hearing recording, Cole-Gutiérrez admits the district’s definition of “empty” space is not part of state law under Prop 39.

The district’s deceptive practices have resulted in essential programs being closed and students losing learning, resource, and play space. Special Education programs have been forced to close, counselors and resource specialists have been forced to work with students in hallways and closets, and students have had to transfer to another campus because of lack of space caused by charter co-location.

José Cole-Gutiérrez and any other district leader who misled school board members, educators, students, families, and community members must be held accountable. 

Join Reclaim Our Schools LA in the call for accountability. Send a message to the school board and Carvalho demanding the resignation of José Cole-Gutiérrez and a full audit of co-location shared space agreements.