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Archived: Luis Sanchez for LAUSD District 5

Not only is the Los Angeles Unified School District, LAUSD in the midst of reorganizing low-achieving schools, it must also select the groups that will run the new schools that will open this fall.

The school district is also facing a huge budget deficit due to state funding cuts. The impact to schools — fewer teachers, fewer days in the classroom, loss of school support workers and systems — are sure to be contentious.

Special care must be taken to not use tough financial times as an excuse to circumvent the progress of school reform underway in the district. The retirement of Yolie Flores in District 5 should not delay those reforms, or set them on another path. Flores has championed an end to the status quo at all levels, even when it was met with strong resistance. Her replacement must be willing to the same.

EGP endorses Luis Sanchez for LAUSD School Board District 5.

Sanchez has displayed a real understanding of the issues now in discussion regarding the district. As a long time education reform advocate, he has walked the walk and talked the talk of civic engagement in the reform process.

He is well aware of the need to reduce the huge dropout numbers in District 5 schools, and like us believes that there is a need to increase parents participation in their children’s education.

Concern have been raised about his ability to differentiate himself and his votes from his current boss, school board president Monica Garcia, the mayor or even the community groups he has long been aligned with when the need arises.

Sanchez says he is an independent person who intends to follow his own mind and not others on the board.

He says he is willing to call for greater review of charter school management, student achievement at those schools and when necessary revoke the charters of  schools with persistently low performance records. He is also in favor of a process to evaluate teacher performance.

We feel that John Fernandez, one of two other candidates in the district, has been badly treated by his former union friends, but we do not accept his there are no bad teachers, just bad administrators point of view. Many of his other campaign points we put in the been-there-done-that category.  The use of old fear bating rhetoric, such as charter schools depriving LAUSD students of quality education, holds no sway with us, nor should it with voters.

We believe that Luis Sanchez is the best