Why is the school board election more important than we realized?

One mom gives her reasons why the March 5 election is critical to students and families.

On March 5, I'm voting for Steve Zimmer because he fights for equal access for ALL students (and truly knows what that means), demands a level playing field for charters and community schools, and helps innovate curriculum.

While so-called reformers claim no progress is possible until unions are shut down and school governance is turned on its head, Steve just gets the work done. 

This election is getting national attention because his opponent has backing from big money supporters who want to corporatize our school system. As a mom, would I sometimes like to scrap the whole system and start over? Heck yeah! But Steve has accomplished so much without that kind of drama.

Just recently, his victories for our kids include:

* achieving what the LA Times called a "landmark agreement" on teacher evaluations

* expanding school gardens and permitting students to earn money by selling their crops

* improving nutrition policies to give students more time to sit down and eat a healthy lunch.

Zimmer's campaign does not have the money to send weekly mailers. It will be up to us to spread the word.

* Make a list of at least five people you'll forward posts like this to every time you read them.

*Volunteer for Steve's campaign.

* Friend Steve on Facebook.

* Plan a house party so your neighbors can meet Steve and his supporters.

* Donate to his campaign today.

We only have one month to re-elect the best school board member ever. What other ideas to you have to get the job done?

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Sue Kaplan January 28, 2013 at 05:36 PM
I am voting for Steve Zimmer too. LA does not need any more of the cynical politicing we see in other races. This is about the education of our youth. As a volunteer in the schools, I respect the values Steve has shown to students, teachers and parents: He is ethical, fair-minded, and trustworthy. He gets the job done by being a conciliator and not by pushing any agenda. His heart and soul is in making these schools better for ALL. Tell all and vote for him on March 5.
Jeff Miller January 28, 2013 at 07:53 PM
As an educator in Los Angeles since 1992, and a current Venice High School parent, I am also supporting Steve Zimmer. I have had the pleasure of getting to know Steve professionally over the past couple of years and have found him to work tirelessly to represent ALL students of this city. He has been an advocate for early childhood education, a supporter of charter schools and driving force to align a strategy behind their growth, a community builder... He often works 7 days a week and late into the evening and is an objective voice of reason on the school board. I feel he has done an EXCELLENT job of representing the needs I have seen at Venice High School and has earned to continue doing the fine work he has done. I urge people to look at his record- you will see he has integrity. Attend a meet and greet and talk to him and ask him the difficult questions- he will discuss what he believes and why he believes it. This is an EDUCATOR- he was a teacher and a counselor and knows the landscape. Current times require critical introspection prior to voting. Steve Zimmer is an educator to the core of his soul and he deserves your vote.
kami turrou January 29, 2013 at 12:17 AM
I am absolutely voting for Steve Zimmer. Instead of looking to outside sources, Charter Organizations, and trying to completely turn the School District upside down, Steve has been an advocate for all students at all schools and does so much to support the schools already achieving and succeeding within LAUSD. There have been many times Steve has come to the aid of our local school, from small things like getting sprinklers fixed to HUGE things like helping save a teacher and helping parents and staff have input into hiring our new principal. His office has been incredibly responsive to us and really only wants what is best for each and every student in LAUSD. I believe he has so much more to do and will do it well.
carolyn rios January 29, 2013 at 12:26 AM
Steve Zimmer has proven over and over that he can work with all sides on an issue and negotiate solutions. He was significant in getting money from both Sacramento and Washington to save Art Education, Adult Ed, and Early childhood education. He has spent his life dealing with education from Special Education to founding Community Centers to facilitate local education. He has intervened to save beloved local programs. He knows the District and the issues at every level. He deserves re-election
Della Rios January 29, 2013 at 01:07 AM
I have worked next to Steve Zimmer since his first day as an educator. When people ask me about him I say "He is the real deal" Steve and 2 of his fellow educators took an old sweat shop, converted it into a Community Center where students of all ages come to receive educational support as well as wrap around services to help them not only graduate but become productive and ethical citizens. Being a school board member is public service. It requires long hours and the ability to be completely selfless. This is a job for an experienced educator and an advocate for all students and families. Having a strategic plan for charter schools, and all schools is just common sense. When you hear the rhetoric about Steve and charter schools, don't believe it. He cares about all kids and all schools. He just wants to make sure there is accountability for all adults. Not just some.
David Ewing January 29, 2013 at 07:46 AM
I heard him speak at a fundraiser the other day, and I've heard him speak at community meetings. What always impresses me is that he listens and discusses. He is not a divider; he is thoughtful and does not vilify those with other opinions. He has strong principles, but his approach is collegial.
Linda Lucks January 29, 2013 at 08:31 PM
I got to know Steve when he came to meetings of the Venice Neighborhood Council when the debate was raging about co-locations in Venice schools. I had not known him before and was new to the issue, but seeing how he navigated a very emotional issue with compassion, intelligence and fairness made me realize that he is a person who is really trying to find solutions to difficult problems in the best way. I also support Steve because of his support for school gardens and is using the popular gardens at many of our schools to create a curriculum including good nutrition, agriculture and including families in the entire process.
Sara Roos January 30, 2013 at 06:46 AM
David - I completely agree about his listening. And I confess I was a little surprised! There really are some true, deep problems in our school system and it is frustrating that things are in such a state. I just presumed that our school board member must be something-or-other .... I am happy to report my prejudices just turn out not to be true. He is thoughtful, articulate, concerned, knowledgeable - obviously morally directed and even accomplished to boot. I don't know why or where I had acquired some weird notion that he wouldn't be a good listener or explainer: I am wrong about both these myths. The debate he attended the other day showed up my internal prejudices. I didn't really realize previously how lucky we westsiders are to have him! As another said above: this man deserves reelection. On his own accord, but particularly when you factor in the alternative. His competition is not a wholesome prospect.


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