"I think the aim of LEARN is not to save the school district but rather (to) help improve the educational opportunities of students. And it will do this in two ways: Firstly, it returns much more control to schools' staff where principals, school staff and parents will get a chance to set objectives. Secondly, it sets up a move from an environment where the district is a regulator to being a provider. LEARN has a good chance of changing the educational system."
* Theodore Mitchell, dean of UCLA School of Education, who has been working with LEARN
"I think it would be good. If the teachers and stuff were more responsible for things they would try more. But the way it is now, they aren't really responsible for things, so they just sort of do their jobs. Things do need to change. We've been talking abut changes in the schools for a long time but nothing has really happened. And if it's something really new, well then I think we should try it. We have to try something different."
* Alicia Harrison, student, Manual Arts High
"I think it's a good idea because the district is so big. The schools know what they need more than someone who is 40 miles away. So who better to have control than the people who are in the schools? . . . I think some of the money would be better distributed this way, too, because the district is so big now that there are some places out there like Montebello and stuff and they may need different things."
* Priscilla Marshall, Carson resident whose children attended L.A. schools
"There are some components of LEARN--any type of school-based management systems that allocates how efficiently the schools work--that will help the system. . . . Restructuring will help, but it won't get to the core issues. No matter what changes are instituted, the people who are working in the schools with the children--that's where we need to put our focus. . . . We have kids that are at risk and we have to have comparable people who can work with at-risk youth. Not everyone is equipped to do this."
* Alvis Andrews, principal, Grape Street Elementary in Watts