At the failing 24th Street Elementary School in West Adams, the site of the first Parent Trigger in the Los Angeles Unified School District, an interesting competition appears to be brewing.
If you remember, parents at 24th Street Elementary dropped a signature petition on L.A. Unified officials on January 17, starting a process in which they may be allowed to institute changes at that chronically low-ranked school as part of the California law called the Parent Trigger.
Now the 24th Street Elementary School Parents' Union and advocacy group Parent Revolution are announcing that they've received eight “letters of interest” from education providers that want to come in and help the parents clean up the mess at that school. Such overwhelming “interest” is a first for a Parent Trigger.
The previous two Parent Triggers in Compton and Adelanto, California, weren't so popular with education providers — that's because long, dragged out legal battles were expected and unfolded.
This time around, they are leaping at the chance to partake in a Parent Trigger.
“Of the eight LOI's received,” a press statement from Parent Revolution states, “six came from existing non-profit charter school operators: Academia Moderna; Crown Preparatory Academy; Frederick Douglass Academy Elementary School and Vista Academy Elementary School; Global Education Academy; Celerity Global Development and Para Los Ninos. One was received from a former 24th Street Elementary School educator through an Education Management Organization (EMO), and the other was from the Los Angeles Unified School District.”
It'll be interesting to watch how the competition plays out. The 24th Street Elementary School Parents' Union are now asking for proposals from each group, with a March 8 deadline. The parents will then look them over and vote on who they want to work with.
“We are very excited that eight high-quality LOIs have been received,” says Amabilia Villeda, lead parent coordinator for the 24th Street Elementary School parents, in a press statement. “Before we submitted our Parent Trigger petitions we only had one option for our children's future — and even [LAUSD] Superintendent John Deasy agreed that it was a lousy one. Now we have eight!”
Villeda adds, “This gives us a real choice in who transforms our school in the coming months. We are pleased the school district is also participating in this process.”
The L.A. Unified school board still needs to decide if it will fight the Parent Trigger and launch a legal battle, but, so far, there have been no indications that will happen. The parents plan to institute their changes in the next academic year, 2013-2014. An overwhelming 69 percent of 24th Street Elementary School parents signed the Parent Trigger petition.
Stay tuned for more details as they happen.
Contact Patrick Range McDonald at firstname.lastname@example.org.