LAUSD spared teacher layoffs (for the time being)

LA Daily News reports that Los Angeles Schools Chief Ramon Cortines announced that the Los Angeles Unified School District will not be laying off any teachers throughout the end of the school year.

Huzzah! Right? Right?

Not so fast:

But Cortines said he does not want to make the cuts now because state lawmakers have not yet crafted a deal to address the state budget deficit, and he doesn’t want to disrupt classrooms halfway through the school year. He also noted a high number of district teachers have expressed interest in early retirement.

In a written statement to teachers, faculty, staff and the community, Cortines warned that this decision only delays the inevitable need for layoffs down the line.

“To guide us in our difficult decision making, we will have a plan to present to the Board of Education and community by the end of February 2009,” Cortines wrote. “I want to be clear that this plan will not be comfortable and will result in layoffs at every level of the district.”

Bummer. Thankfully my brother just got out of the LAUSD, but it’s a sad state of affairs when we’re laying off teachers. Any of you a teacher in the LAUSD? Any have less than two years worth of experience? (That’s who the layoffs are targetting.

BREAKING: LAUSD Votes to Send Layoff Notices to 2300 Teachers

From the Daily News:

Los Angeles Unified school board members voted 4-2 Tuesday to authorize sending layoff notices to about 2,300 teachers, although the district superintendent said the notices might not necessarily be sent.

“It is strictly precautionary mainly, because I am trying to put pressure on Sacramento,” Superintendent Ramon Cortines said.

He vowed not to send any notices before the board’s next scheduled meeting in two weeks, adding the notices would be sent only if there were no other options to save the jobs.

The president of the teachers union condemned the vote, saying it was more than a bluff.

“It’s more than pressure,” said United Teachers Los Angeles President AJ Duffy. “No matter what Cortines said the reality is with Megan Reilly, the district chief financial officer, who has a budget based on laying off 2,200 teachers.”

Cutting education is no way to solve a budget crisis. Who is running this joint, and why haven’t they been fired?