LAUSD Boardmember Marlene Canter issued the following statement in response to passage of a the Teacher Quality motion by the LAUSD Board of Education to reform the labyrinthine and expensive process to fire teachers who have been removed for cause:
"This is a historic and important step to put children first and reform the dismissal process for certificated school employees. I applaud my colleagues--Boardmembers Flores-Aguilar, Galatzan and Garcia--who joined me today to begin this effort.
"It is impossible to justify a dismissal process that fails to protect the children in our care. While employee rights are important, they should not trump children's rights to safety and a quality education. Today's action is an important step--but only the first step in the journey to change state law. I hope that the Legislature will act decisively to address these shortcomings and will continue to be an advocate for these changes.
"We cannot afford to become complacent. This is one of many examples of adult agendas taking precedence over children's best interests. The outrage caused by the series of stories in the Los Angeles Times has increased public awareness of California's broken dismissal process. We need similar attention and focus paid to other issues like tenure and seniority, performance pay, and the evaluation process. I remain committed to advocating for changes that put children's best interest first in education policy and encourage all stakeholders to do the same, especially in these challenging times.
I am counting on Superintendent Cortines and the members of the District Taskforce to continue this effort and to bring meaningful reforms to the legislature for action."
Boardmember Canter can be reached for further comment at the number above.