Los Angeles gets a federal grant for jobs

Get LA Back to Work campaignJenny Cobb finished teaching her spring semester class with a pang of fear. She felt she had taught her class the best she could, but her performance had nothing to do with future.

“In the summer of the 2011, I was no longer employed due to lay-offs,” said Cobb

LAUSD had laid off another round of teachers that year and she along with hundreds of other teachers were left to spend their summer in search of work. Cobb could not find a job for nearly a year with no luck. She says she was at the end of her rope until she received help from the Workforce Development Program.

“Being lost and uncertain of the future, I felt like life was going nowhere,” said Cobb. “Today I feel like I’m going somewhere.” [Read more…]

24th Street Elementary parents vote for reform

24th Street Elementary parents voting on reform

Parents at 24th Street Elementary voting on a proposal to reform the school under the California Parent Trigger Act.

Listen to an audio story from Annenberg Radio News

Amabili Villeda says her eight-year-old son goes to an elementary school with unclean facilities, one of the highest rates of suspension, and a difficult principal.

“She didn’t communicate with the parents,”said Villeda. “Even the teachers complained that they couldn’t communicate with her, and parents started take their children out of the school.”

Over the course of a year, the enrollment rate at 24th St. in South LA dropped from 1,000 students to 600. Some parents were discouraged, but Villeda saw this as a reason to get motivated. [Read more…]

Christian Rap: Swag meets salvation

Everyone is familiar with the traditional sounds of Sunday morning. The sound of choir voices and organ riffs coming together to deliver the gospel, but USC student Makiah Green gets her gospel in a more contemporary form.

Makiah Green

Makiah Green believes Christian rap should not be alternative music but the standard. (Photo by Maria Eubanks)

“Oh man, I went to a church, Pastor for Christ Movement, filled with young people, and in service, they would play these really cool rap songs. And so I would just start asking who is this, who is this, who is this,” said Green. “They had a DJ that would play during service, and I went up to him and he put a playlist on a flash drive. And that was the beginnings.” [Read more…]

City elections underwhelm South LA voters

Listen to an audio story from Annenberg Radio News

imageOn election day in Los Angeles, not many people are at the polls.

I went out to four polling stations in South L.A. to find that only the most dedicated residents came out to vote.

“Voting for a mayor in your city is like voting for your president. That’s how important it is,” said 26-year-old Deja Crawford. [Read more…]