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California Charter Schools Assn

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 1, 2008 | Howard Blume
The Los Angeles Unified School District on Tuesday withdrew offers of classroom space for charter schools at seven traditional schools. Charters will no longer be invited to share space at Taft, Fairfax and Crenshaw high schools. Elementary schools off the list are Wadsworth, 49th Street, Miles and Hughes. Teachers, administrators and parents at numerous schools have waged campaigns against the charters. In a memo, Senior Deputy Supt. Ramon C. Cortines said he based his decision on his experience running schools and on input from an "instructional group" that examined effects on academic programs.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 2014 | Howard Blume
Los Angeles Unified schools Supt. John Deasy has a newly modified contract that includes an annual buyout of unused vacation days and new performance measures that require him to bring in revenue and enroll more students. He will also pay his own pension deduction for the first time, a cost offset by an increase of $20,000 to his annual salary. The amended pact, approved by the Board of Education last week after private discussions, offers the latest evidence of a board that is exerting more control over the direction of the nation's second-largest school system.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 14, 2013 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
They hail from New York, the Silicon Valley, Arkansas, Los Angeles and elsewhere. They are a rich and diverse lot, including Republicans, liberals, Hollywood notables and international corporate executives. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, L.A. philanthropist Eli Broad, Netflix founder Reed Hastings, pomegranate juice titan Lynda Resnick, anti-Obama mega-donor A. Jerrold Perenchio and the widow of Steve Jobs. Together, they smashed records for spending by outside groups in last month's L.A. Board of Education elections.
OPINION
December 27, 2013
Re "When charter schools fail," Opinion, Dec. 23 As a longtime elementary school teacher, I know that the single most important factor in a student's success is the involvement of parents. The mere fact that a parent has taken the time to apply to a charter or magnet school means that those schools have students whose parents are at least paying attention to their children's education. Charter and magnet schools in effect skim the cream off the top of public schools. It's unfair to fully attribute any success they might have to teaching methods.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 16, 2008 | Mitchell Landsberg
An administrator from San Diego's acclaimed High Tech High has been named head of the California Charter Schools Assn., which has been a powerful advocate and organizing force for charter schools in the state, the organization announced Monday. Jed Wallace, chief operations officer of High Tech High since 2004, takes over an association that rose to prominence under the leadership of former Los Angeles school board member Caprice Young. Young left in August to take a job with Knowledge Universe, an education venture owned by financier and philanthropist Michael Milken.
OPINION
December 27, 2013
Re "When charter schools fail," Opinion, Dec. 23 As a longtime elementary school teacher, I know that the single most important factor in a student's success is the involvement of parents. The mere fact that a parent has taken the time to apply to a charter or magnet school means that those schools have students whose parents are at least paying attention to their children's education. Charter and magnet schools in effect skim the cream off the top of public schools. It's unfair to fully attribute any success they might have to teaching methods.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 5, 2013 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
In a case that could have impact statewide, a Los Angeles jury Friday found the operators of a west San Fernando Valley charter school guilty of illegally taking or misappropriating more than $200,000 in public funds. Together, Yevgeny "Eugene" Selivanov, 40, and his wife, Tatyana Berkovich, 36, faced 26 felony counts for using state money in ways they insisted were legal under laws that apply to nonprofits and charter schools in California. Over several years, for example, they spent more than $34,000 on meals, entertainment and gifts that they classified as business expenses or gestures of appreciation for teachers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 13, 2011 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
Two popular Los Angeles charter schools have allowed some families to bypass a lottery for admission in exchange for providing special services or a substantial volunteer commitment. The practices of Larchmont Charter School and Los Feliz Charter School for the Arts have raised concerns that such preference policies, if allowed, could open the door to well-connected friends or wealthier families who promise to contribute. In effect, critics say, charters could end up functioning more like private schools than campuses almost entirely supported with tax dollars.
OPINION
July 15, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
What can the education world conclude about charter schools after their first couple of decades in existence? Something so simple that it's almost earth-shattering: The best ones benefit students enormously, especially those students who are low income, African American or still learning English. And the bad ones are far worse than if the students had stayed in their public schools. It's not hard to ensure that charter schools are good; it just takes a modicum of oversight and the political will that too many school boards have been unwilling to exercise.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 23, 2011 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
The state charter school association has received a $15-million grant from the Walton Family Foundation to add 20,000 more charter school students in Los Angeles and 100,000 statewide. The grant, scheduled to be announced Tuesday, is the largest by far to the California Charter Schools Assn., and also the largest of its kind from the nonprofit established by the founders of the Wal-Mart Corp. The Los Angeles Unified School District has more charter schools — 183 last year — and more charter-school students than any school system in the country, and that growth spurt is poised to continue despite countervailing pressure from reduced education funding and political resistance from teacher unions and other critics.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 4, 2013 | Martha Groves
When a privately run charter school opened in August on the campus of a traditional elementary school, a quiet Westside neighborhood suddenly found itself inundated with traffic during morning drop-off and afternoon pickup, one resident recalled. "People parked in front of driveways, didn't use crosswalks and moved trash bins without permission," said Jose Benitez, a longtime resident whose house is a block from the school in Los Angeles' Del Rey neighborhood. After he and others complained, Citizens of the World Charter School distributed packets of "karma tickets" that listed violations such as wasting curb space and double parking.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 4, 2013 | By Howard Blume
The founders of a San Fernando Valley charter school were sentenced Friday for the misappropriation of more than $200,000 in public funds in a case that could affect charter schools statewide. Yevgeny "Eugene" Selivanov, the co-founder of Ivy Academia Charter School, faces four years and eight months in prison. His wife, Tatyana Berkovich, who had a lesser role in managing school finances, must serve 45 days in County Jail. She also will be sentenced to five years probation and 320 hours of community service.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 4, 2013 | By Howard Blume
The founders of a San Fernando Valley charter school were sentenced Friday for the misappropriation of more than $200,000 in public funds in a case that could affect charter schools statewide. Yevgeny "Eugene" Selivanov, the co-founder of Ivy Academia Charter School, faces 4 years and 8 months in state prison. His wife, Tatyana Berkovich, who had a lesser role in managing school finances, must serve 45 days in County Jail. She also will serve five years' probation and perform 320 hours of community service.
OPINION
August 28, 2013
When voters passed Proposition 39 in 2000, they surely had no idea of the headaches it would cause Los Angeles schools. Most Californians probably never even noticed the wording about providing space for charter schools, and if they did, they had little idea of what a charter school was. The chief purpose of the measure was to allow school bonds to pass with 55% of the vote rather than the two-thirds supermajority required up to that point. Schools were falling apart and classrooms were so tightly packed that many campuses operated on year-round, multitrack schedules.
OPINION
July 15, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
What can the education world conclude about charter schools after their first couple of decades in existence? Something so simple that it's almost earth-shattering: The best ones benefit students enormously, especially those students who are low income, African American or still learning English. And the bad ones are far worse than if the students had stayed in their public schools. It's not hard to ensure that charter schools are good; it just takes a modicum of oversight and the political will that too many school boards have been unwilling to exercise.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 14, 2013 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
They hail from New York, the Silicon Valley, Arkansas, Los Angeles and elsewhere. They are a rich and diverse lot, including Republicans, liberals, Hollywood notables and international corporate executives. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, L.A. philanthropist Eli Broad, Netflix founder Reed Hastings, pomegranate juice titan Lynda Resnick, anti-Obama mega-donor A. Jerrold Perenchio and the widow of Steve Jobs. Together, they smashed records for spending by outside groups in last month's L.A. Board of Education elections.
OPINION
August 15, 2009
Re "Charters get an unsatisfactory grade," Opinion, Aug. 11 I have been following with great interest the many issues related to our public schools in Los Angeles and elsewhere, as both a retired teacher and a grandmother. Diane Ravitch, in her thoughtful and well-researched Times Op-Ed article, says it all. The public school system has served our country well. I believe it should be improved and preserved. I hope our Los Angeles Unified School District Board pays attention to the research Ravitch discusses before it gives away our schools to private enterprise.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 4, 2013 | By Howard Blume
The founders of a San Fernando Valley charter school were sentenced Friday for the misappropriation of more than $200,000 in public funds in a case that could affect charter schools statewide. Yevgeny "Eugene" Selivanov, the co-founder of Ivy Academia Charter School, faces four years and eight months in prison. His wife, Tatyana Berkovich, who had a lesser role in managing school finances, must serve 45 days in County Jail. She also will be sentenced to five years probation and 320 hours of community service.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 5, 2013 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
In a case that could have impact statewide, a Los Angeles jury Friday found the operators of a west San Fernando Valley charter school guilty of illegally taking or misappropriating more than $200,000 in public funds. Together, Yevgeny "Eugene" Selivanov, 40, and his wife, Tatyana Berkovich, 36, faced 26 felony counts for using state money in ways they insisted were legal under laws that apply to nonprofits and charter schools in California. Over several years, for example, they spent more than $34,000 on meals, entertainment and gifts that they classified as business expenses or gestures of appreciation for teachers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 12, 2012 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles school officials are fighting a court order, which took effect Wednesday, that would set aside more classroom seats for charter schools - even if that means traditional schools will lose space for parent centers, computer labs, academic intervention and other services. Under state law, school districts must offer space to charters that is "reasonably equivalent" to that provided for students in traditional schools. Charters are independently run and are exempt from union contracts and many rules that apply to regular campuses.
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