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South Bay Digest

Lawndale : Schools Plan Called a Loser

July 09, 1987

Proposals to organize a unified school district in Lawndale got the brush-off from an attorney for the Centinela Valley Union High School District this week.

Keith Breon told district trustees that the plan offered by Councilman Larry Rudolph a month ago had little or no chance of overcoming the barriers to reorganizing school systems. He also criticized Rudolph for calling on the city attorney to study his proposal, which Breon said has no relevance to Lawndale city affairs.

Under Rudolph's plan, the closed Lawndale High School campus would be annexed from Centinela Valley and combined with Lawndale's present elementary schools to form a new unified district. That would leave the Centinela district, which now covers Hawthorne, Lawndale and Lennox, with only the high school campus in Hawthorne.

To initiate such a plan, Breon said, backers would have to get a petition signed by at least 25% of the registered voters in the present Centinela Valley district, not just in Lawndale. If the backers got over that hurdle, he said, they would face a complex process of public hearings, decisions by boards at various levels up to the state, and finally an election.

Breon said he knew of only one successful unification effort in the past decade in California. Lomita recently abandoned a two-year effort to set up its own school system by pulling out of the Los Angeles district.

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