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LA mayor a step closer to controlling city schools

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Aired 4/19/09

San Diego school board members are upset that Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is one step closer to taking control of LA city schools. KPBS Reporter Ana Tintocalis has more.

Villaraigosa's takeover plan cleared the state Senate. Now it's headed to the assembly for a final vote this week. San Diego school board members believe the plan will open the flood gates for other mayors to do the same. School trustee John de Beck says Villaraigosa's plan threatens to roll back reforms that have lead to some gains in student achievement.

de Beck: "The better model is to have people who have an interest in education, choose a superintendent and give that superintendent authority as we do in San Diego to run the schools. I can't imagine, for example, us turning over the schools to the city council or the mayor in San Diego."

If approved by the assembly, Villaraigosa would have direct control over 36 of the worst-performing LA schools. He could also veto school decisions and influence how the district spends its money. Ana Tintocalis, KPBS News.

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