Their Children Attend the Second Largest School District. They Have No Representation

Carl J. Petersen
3 min readNov 19, 2018

We are living at a time in our nation when democracy and true representative government is being attacked and eroded at every level of leadership

- LAUSD Board Member Scott Schmerelson

It has been almost three months since the LAUSD School Board rejected Board Member Scott Schmerelson’s “Providing a Voice and a Vote for the Constituents of Board District 5” resolution. As a result, the seat vacated by Ref Rodriguez has remained empty as the LAUSD careens towards a teacher’s strike. One-seventh of the LAUSD’s stakeholders have had no voice while Superintendent Austin Beutner is working on a secret plan to make another attempt at reorganizing the District’s bureaucracy. Parents had no one to turn to as yet another under-regulated charter school within Board District 5’s boundaries closed down in the middle of the school year.

At the meeting where Schmerelson’s resolution was considered, Board Member Nick Melvoin claimed that he wanted a temporary replacement to be named but felt that the community should have more input. He, therefore, attempted unsuccessfully to hijack the resolution with a substitute motion that would have had the Board collecting resumes from members of the community interested in serving. Melvoin could have had his staff perform this task and introduced these candidates to his fellow Board members. However, he took no such action proving that he had no real intention of voting to put anyone in the seat.

At the same meeting, Board Member Richard Vladovic stated that he felt that naming anyone to the seat was undemocratic. However, he did state that he would consider voting for Bennett Kayser, as he might have won the election if Rodriguez had not cheated. Nothing was said about Andrew Thomas, although his candidacy was also affected. In any case, Vladovic has not proposed a motion in the past three…

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Carl J. Petersen

Parent, special education advocate and former LAUSD School Board candidate. Still fighting for the children. www.ChangeTheLAUSD.com