Ramon Cortines' bizarre letter to Schwarzenegger


Somebody provided us the strange letter Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Ramon Cortines purportedly sent today to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, about the governor's plan to allow school districts to reduce the school year, increase class size, and/or drop a key science course that California students normally must take to graduate.

Putting aside those controversies, it's a rambling letter that eight times thanks Arnold for "flexibility" or praises "flexibilities." As we've mentioned before, Ray Cortines is a nice guy but not known for turning around schools (the unusual writing duo of NYC school chief Joel Klein and Al Sharpton listed the top school districts and top educators serious about reform in the WSJ. Neither L.A. or Cortines was mentioned.)

Cortines uses poor grammar and misspells the word "through," so let's hope this is a rough draft. It's about 400 words long, yet doesn't seem to make an actual point. A teacher might give him a C-.

Here's a taste of it:

Letter (or so we are told) from Ray Cortines to Schwarzenegger, dated today, January 13, 2009:
...
I want to thank you for your leadership in promoting the flexibility

authorization for the K-12 education budget. The flexibility option

would be of great assistance in these difficult economic times and

state budget deficits. Given the fact that we are more than halfway

thru the fiscal year and teachers and students are in the midst of

their school year -- with districts already having made decisions about

staff, class size and programs -- flexibility options are essential in

the handling of any midyear reduction. ... For the upcoming year,

continuing these flexibility options help us shape a more balanced

education program. In some ways this is even more critical in

preserving our educational programs. ... We hope that you will continue

to promote flexibilities, including class size ... as you come to a

resolution on balancing the budget. ...


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