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Slap in the face: LAUSD uses last bargaining session of the school year to disrespect educators, students, and families

Over the past five bargaining sessions with LAUSD, UTLA educators and allies presented ground-breaking proposals to support students and families and address the historic educator shortage crisis impacting our schools.

A full month after receiving our Beyond Recovery package and hearing frank testimony from educators about how overworked and undersupported we are, LAUSD refuses to respond to our solutions.

Instead, on June 15 the district presented proposals that attack the fundamental rights of union educators and double down on inequitable, ineffective standardized testing.

LAUSD’s proposals would:

  • limit our ability to strike alongside other LAUSD unions, a right we have had for decades and that is fundamental to union solidarity
  • double-down on unnecessary overtesting that wastes instructional time and is ineffective and inequitable
  • ignore needed improvements to strengthen the Adult Education program

Our Expanded Bargaining Team completely rejected these proposals.

It was especially galling that LAUSD made these proposals after listening to the 16 parents, students, community organizers, and leaders who joined our Expanded Bargaining Team last night to testify about issues inside and outside of school that impact educators’ ability to teach and our students’ ability to succeed. Our package addresses these issues with proposals for, among other things, support for immigrant families, green space on all campuses, technology upgrades, and support for unhoused students, including advocating for Section 8 housing vouchers and support for rent control. Any solution to declining student enrollment must address the housing crisis that is pushing out LAUSD families and making the city unlivable for working families.

To date, LAUSD has made ZERO proposals on anything of value, such as higher pay, smaller class sizes, special education resources, and more mental health support for students.

“It’s outrageous that LAUSD’s first priority in bargaining is to try to shut down our voice as union educators,” UTLA President Cecily Myart-Cruz said. “Where is their urgency to bring solutions to the table? Where is their urgency to create better working conditions in the face of a historic educator shortage? Where is their urgency to use the record-breaking funding to go beyond the status quo and build the school communities that will attract students and staff and thrive?”

The signs are clear — winning what educators and students deserve will take all of us, building power and taking escalating actions in the new school year to force LAUSD to agree to our demands.