The Los Angeles Unified School District board did more in one meeting last night than it's done in months. (Still, theirs couldn't compete with Compton's. Hot damn.)
Board members passed two major changes to L.A. schools: 1) The academic year will now start on Aug. 15, and 2) corporate sponsors will be allowed on campus to hang ads, name buildings, claim stadiums, etc.
We're guessing the kiddies will be cool with Nike Computer Lab, but schlepping to class in the peak of summer heat?
We'd be pretty ticked. The board spent all night blabbering about how great this would be for the students, seeing as they could finish the semester and get their finals out the way before winter break.
Then the real motive reared its ugly head: More time to jam children's brains with random tricks and factoids for higher scores on the California High School Exit Exam and Advanced Placement tests.
In the careful words of Superintendent Ramon Cortines, as fed to City News Service:
“The advantages of this reform support academic achievement for all of our students.'' Read: all of our state standings.
School will let out earlier to make up for the change, but who wants to be free for all that “June gloom” nonsense?
Kennedy High School in the San Fernando Valley was one of the 2010 guinea pigs for next year's schedule. Vice Principal Sherilyn Schwartz says it was a “shock,” but that everyone is excited about being done with the first semester this Friday. In terms of the heat, she points out that this year was weird — cooler in August, hotter in September.
Students better hope this apocalyptic weather keeps up for another summer.
In the meantime, they'll be able to enjoy corporate sponsorship at school — which LAUSD board members hope will offset billion-dollar budget cuts with up to $18 million a year. They've reassured parents that evils like drugs, alcohol, fast food, etc. will not be allowed ad space, but we can smell some angry overprotective mothers in their future.
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