URBAN TxT teens visit Google

URBAN TxT at Google

URBAN TxT students and staff with Eric Schmidt, Google Chairman.

Three members of URBAN Teens eXploring Technology received a private tour of the Google LA office, participated in a discussion with Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen, and then met Google’s chairman at the organization’s Venice office. 

“I am a coder and I’m seventeen years old,” said Alejandro to Eric Schmidt, Chairman of Google. “What advice can you give me?” asked the South LA teen at the culmination of Google LA’s speaker series session and May 10th’s fire side chat.

“Keep doing what you’re doing and you will be wealthy beyond your dreams,” answered Schmidt. “We need a million of you.”

The teen is part of URBAN Teens eXploring Technology (URBAN TxT), a nonprofit organization in South Los Angeles. The organization creates tech entrepreneurs by teaching teens in South Los Angeles computer programming, web development, design, and most importantly leadership skills. [Read more…]

Black Skeptics offering scholarships to LAUSD students


OPINION: Defense of Marriage: Racism, family values and the 99 percent

By Sikivu Hutchinson

As Proposition 8’s lead attorney trotted out the standard Christian fascist, marriage is only for procreation, party line before the Supreme Court yesterday, I was reminded of a 2011 Los Angeles Times story about the changing demographics of California families.

The article leads with an idyllic portrait of a white, lesbian-headed family whose daughter is asked “on a leafy drive…at a newly renovated home with cathedral ceilings and a backyard pool” why she has three mommies. [Read more…]

OPINION: Meet Compton’s mayoral candidate Aja Brown

By Melissa Hebert

Aja Brown is a second-generation resident of Compton who has entered the municipal elections for Mayor of the City of Compton. Brown has an extensive background in planning and has experience working for Compton’s redevelopment agency.

imageAja Brown

Please state your name and time as a resident in the City of Compton, and which district you reside in?
Aja Brown, second-generation Compton resident. I reside in District 2.

What makes you qualified to run for the seat you wish to fill?
I have over 10 years of community development and economic development experience working with the municipalities of Gardena, Inglewood, Pasadena (former Planning Commissioner) and the City of Compton’s redevelopment agency. I am an urban planner by educational training. I graduated from the University of Southern California’s Sol Price School of Public Policy, Planning and Development, and hold a B.S. in Policy, Planning and Development and a Master’s in Planning – emphasis Economic Development. [Read more…]

LA’s Synchronized Traffic Gets a Green Light

By Cliff Liu
Annenberg Radio News

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa flipped the switch today on the final traffic light control box in the citywide signal synchronization program.

“Every single traffic light in the City of Los Angeles is fully synchronized. The only big city over a million in the entire world that has every traffic light synchronized,” said Villaraigosa.

Synching all of LA’s traffic lights on the Automated Traffic Surveillance and Control system has been an ongoing effort since before the 1984 Olympics. The computer-based traffic signal control system monitors traffic in real time and syncs traffic lights accordingly.

Those behind the program say it will result in a 16 percent increase in travel speed and a 12 percent decrease in travel time.

“That translates into an average 22 hours and 23 minutes of time savings a year- nearly a day in the lives spent in travels,” the Mayor said.

That should help people get to where they’re going on time, but it didn’t work out for the Mayor who came half an hour late to today’s unveiling.

Along with the faster travel times comes environmental benefits in a city with 2.5 million registered cars.

“We have so many benefits that come from this. Less time idling at intersections that will help clean the air and reduce our air pollution and with twelve million plus people on our city streets, that translates into an incredible improvement on air quality,” said Councilwoman Jan Perry at the event.

The LA Department of Transportation says today’s synchronization will have the same effect as taking 190,000 cars off the road.


OPINION: Putting on my running shoes for Council District 9 elections

By Martha Sanchez

It is election time and most people are ready to elect a new representative for the poorest council district of Los Angeles; someone who can fix five powerful regulatory tools: infrastructure, industry, immigration, institutions and identity policies.

And this time the election is not about skin color, it is about universal issues. At least this is what we heard from candidates at the first CD9 Candidate Forum held Saturday, February 16th at Maya Angelou Community High School.

This election is about finding a meaningful leader eager to reduce crime, police abuse and political corruption, infrastructural disinvestment, environmental contamination, ethnic tensions, inadequate education, poverty, job opportunities, homelessness, redevelopment plans and discriminatory ordinances that only benefit certain ethnic groups.

And I’m absolutely right when I say the “poorest district of Los Angeles,” even when we have so many important and valuable assets such as the Augustus Hawkins Natural Park, the Jazz Corridor, the California African American Museum, the Green Meadows Recreational Center, the Mercado La Paloma, a great number of new and well equipped school buildings, the Los Angeles Trade Tech College, great transportation lines like the MTA blue line, Exposition line, well-preserved mansions, historical buildings and landmarks, such as the AAA building and the St Vincent Catholic Church along Figueroa corridor.

Did I miss something? Oh yes, L.A Live, L.A Convention Center, the California Science Center, IMAX Theater, L.A. Memorial Coliseum, Exposition Park, Mary Mount University, the University of Southern California, the newest Lorenzo Housing Project, the Orthopeadic Hospital, available warehouses, great investment opportunities, shipper land, ship labor and why not… its people.

Oh yes, we are the least and the last in almost all candidates’ bucket lists, but we are important too. Let’s not forget that “we are living in a neighborhood steeped in culture and history.” That’s why they need our votes!

As a longtime resident, this is the first time that I see a significant number of young and adult volunteers recruited by current political candidates walking down the streets talking to constituents, attracting young voters and reaching out to skeptical residents, encouraging them to participate in the upcoming election on March 5th.

I’m so fascinated with former and new politicians’ campaigns since ten years ago when I first became an activist in my community. Monica Garcia—my school board representative—who is fighting to keep her seat as well, told me: “Martha we can’t do anything for your community because your people don’t vote, and we don’t want to upset the voters.”

That was a slap on my face, but it didn’t prevent me from reaching my goal to improve my community. Now, the same people that were discouraged by politicians are being reached out to and considered important.

Observing all those campaign volunteers knocking on my neighbors’ doors makes me feel proud and inspired. It seems that we have finally changed the equation. We learned our rights and acquired some political awareness to turn things around. But we still need something equally important: we need jobs, education and economic opportunities. In order to get that, we need to have an honest and committed representative in City Hall.

For those who couldn’t attend the forum I would like to share some personal remarks. First and most importantly, this community has demonstrated that Black and Latino leaders can and want to work together. We had a great turnout and the event organizers deserve to be acknowledged for that. Second, we all wanted to know from all candidates what their connection with CD9 was and what they have done for us in their past. Third, I believe most people just started to understand that we don’t need a candidate that looks like us; we need someone that thinks and acts like us!

Thus, no matter how hard they tried to connect with us by mentioning their Mexican, Salvadoran, African-American, blue, white, red or purple affiliation, it was clear to them that we didn’t want big corporations dictating our lives. We want equitable funding for working class people, better public services and high quality infrastructure, and more power in decision-making process for new developments, housing projects and job opportunities. They might look like us, but if their campaigns are funded by banks, corporations and the so called “philanthropic big brother,” then we don’t want them to represent us.

Although some stressed the fact that since Latino residents are the great majority in CD9, a Latino representative could better suit this community. If it were the case, why is Gil Cedillo, a Mexican-American, running for office in the greatest Central-American district, and why are [Ron] Gochez and [Ana] Cubas, both of Salvadoran descent, persuading Mexican and Black residents to vote for them? Why do Curren Price Jr., David Roberts, and Mike Davis — none of them Mexican-American — think that they could represent CD9 residents better; they should be running for CD8 instead.

Even more outrageous is to hear people concerned with keeping the “black man” in power. This has nothing to do with “black and brown” tensions in South L.A. and it is not about skin color, right? With all due respect, they should know that it was Gilbert Lindsay, a black council member who almost destroyed the pride and character of this former black community. They should go and ask [Eighth District Councilman] Bernard Parks’ constituents how they feel about him too. I believe they feel almost like us when someone mentions Antonio Villaraigosa, Monica Garcia, or Marco Rubio.

My intention is not to divide but to raise awareness that skin color should not be the standard. Those comments really disappoint me in a similar way that others felt discouraged when Cubas and Gochez expressed few remarks in Spanish, though most people — like me — preferred to vocalize issues around education, job training and gentrification. Let’s be honest, a community like mine, holding so many amenities, cultural richness and leisure opportunities is a hidden treasure, a main target of developers and gentrification is already taking place. The rich want our land and they are willing to invest in a physically and mentally disconnected “token” to make it faster.

Please don’t get me wrong, we don’t need a “hometown candidate” that has never been outside of this community and can’t think outside of the box. I don’t believe in a candidate that adjusts his thoughts and manners to please different audiences. How can I trust in a candidate that is taking credit from somebody else’s work to enhance his efforts and commitment, a candidate that was paid to perform some specific tasks under somebody else’s administration, and later feel proud and confident to say “I did it” in a public forum.

Why do we have to use our gender, race, and our humble background to make the statement that we are better. I know rich people that are humble, peaceful and that really care about the poor. I also know poor people who, once they got in a position of power, turned around and became unconscious dictators. I know a lot of female politicians holding important positions of power supporting male agendas and constantly voting against female rights.

I do really want to see change, but change from the grassroots level to the glass ceiling. As a woman, I doubt other women that are successful based on male agendas. As an immigrant, I feel uncertainty around the police department. As minority, I distrust blue eyes. As an educated person, I know how politicians have used and abused this community. As a mother and wife, I need better opportunities for my husband and my kids that Wal-Mart has never provided.

As an activist, I admire Cesar Chavez and Dr. [Martin Luther] King, but what I learned from them is that they never left people behind to run for office and they died fighting for their cause. We don’t need another hero. But if we really want to stop our politicians from being accountable to corporations, then we need to invest in them and work on their campaigns, so they will only be accountable to us… their real constituents. Then, let’s put on our running shoes to walk precincts and make this happen.

OPINION: I could be wrong

Catholics love the season of Lent. I recently enjoyed Mardi Gras over at Bourbon Street fish market this past Tuesday, you know, Fat Tuesday. We party our ass off Tuesday, then Ash Wednesday we receive our ashes created from last years Palms, and prepare to atone and reflect for the next 40 days, otherwise known as Lent. Lent represents the 40 days before Easter. We are asked to give up something during this time. In addition to the no meat on Friday’s policy, this year I’m giving up my pessimistic views of the Inglewood Unified School District (IUSD). Raised to read the bible for understanding what type of person I should be, I began to get reacquainted on how to rid myself of negativity so that I will emerge from Lent more understanding and compassionate and less frustrated. So, I read.

imageMelissa Hebert

Proverbs 13:24 – He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.

This passage is deep. You hate your child if you don’t chastise them…hmmm??? I must have read that line 100 times. Things became clear instantly. I’ve been giving IUSD a hard damn time because of my love for the city which helped raise me.

IUSD gave me my foundation. If any of you have went to an Inglewood school or had your children in one, some of these names may sound familiar: Mrs. Ichinaga, Mrs. Wax, Mrs. Schieldge, Mrs. Strickland, Mr. Rothenberg and Mrs. Howe. Mrs. Ichinaga was a small woman with a huge heart. She was principal during a time when you could go rogue and take your school by the reigns. My teachers understood the difficulties some children faced at home and showed high levels of compassion towards them. Finding solace in our classroom, because it was comfortable and welcoming, created an environment conducive to learning; one where we could escape the nonsense at home and simply be a kid and learn. Friendships flourished for we not only lived in the neighborhood together we went to school together, many of us walking to school together both before and after school.

Inglewood is home, where you still run into former neighbors, classmates and teachers. The reason many seek clarity in the bible is because some overlook a major component of life – faith.

Hebrews 11 – Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. (2) This is what the ancients were commended for.

I was lacking faith in IUSD. Here I am assuming that because we don’t know what their plans are to turn things around doesn’t mean our state administrator and current assistant superintendent have not gotten it together. The problem with having faith stems from not being able to immediately see it and being tired of waiting too damn long. We’ve become an instant society. Just add water and go, but solving real life problems aren’t as simple.

Sure we can get frustrated, but why? Let’s show our support by being more positive and helping to volunteer on campus, let’s encourage non-working family members to help with traffic control so the kids don’t have to dodge the cars of frantic parents rushing to work. Let’s make an effort to bring some goodies to the classroom on Teacher Appreciation Day, or on the whim, to impress upon the teacher that “we don’t take you for granted,” while showing the kids how to express love.

As we wait for funding from Measure GG and we begin to see what our administrators have in place, our children may not directly benefit in the short-term, but long-term, most definitely. It’s the next generation that will be bringing up the rear and if we Generation X-ers make it to our promised golden years of 70, these kids will be the ones we encounter at our grocery stores, banking institutions, city halls and emergency services. So looking at the big picture, we have to have faith that the improvements the district plans to make will indeed come to fruition.

I ask the district to consider offering foreign language courses at the middle school level. By teaching kids a foreign language at an early age, they will become more fluent in the language both written and oral, thus increasing their opportunities for higher education and employment. Mrs. Ichinaga was long criticized for requiring her english learning students to learn through english immersion. It will also be a great program to draw kids back to the school district.

Bennett-Kew was the number one school in the district, and test scores remained high across all ethnicities, for at least a decade. Bennett-Kew was also designated as a distinguished school, as are several other schools in the district. The best thing about our district is we benefit from having Tom Torlaksonas as our state administrator.

Back in 1997, many of us remember the little girl, Sherrice, who stopped at the Nevada state line with her family and was sexually assaulted and killed by Jeremy Strohmeyer. His friend, David Cash, witnessed the assault on Sherrice but never reported it to police. He wasn’t required by law to do so.

While Jeremy serves life in prison, David is free to roam the streets. Tom Torlakson, a former State Assemblyman (D-Antioch), authored legislation, the Sherrice Iverson Good Samaritan Law, that would make it a crime to witness the sexual assault of a minor without notifying police. It was signed into effect in 2001. Without the urging of local black leaders it may not have come to pass, but Torlakson stepped up and did something about it. I too have faith that he will make the right decisions concerning the Inglewood Unified School District because he has demonstrated that he listens to the community.

OPINION: I smell…synergy

By Melissa Hebert
Editor of 2UrbanGirls.com

Synergy, the interaction of elements that when combined produce a total effect that is greater than the sum of the individual elements, contributions, etc. For many years, synergy ceased to exist between cities and their respective school boards.

To say that the synergy in Inglewood and Compton were lacking is an understatement; it is the equivalent of church vs. state. However, it appears that synergy is brewing in both of these great cities.

image Melissa Hebert

Back in 1993, the state took over Compton Unified School District (CUSD) for a couple of reasons: academic and fiscal insolvency. CUSD was $20 million in the hole and test scores reached rock bottom. Scores at 20 of its 34 schools ranked in the bottom 10 percent of the state in 1992, and Compton residents had little recourse to get its schools back on track.

Ward Connerly, the state administer, who also happened to help author Proposition 208 (you know, removing affirmative action from education) was brought in to bring order to chaos. It was also the first time the state took over a school due to low test scores; normally the fiscal solvency is the most pressing issue.

Recently, Inglewood Unified School District (IUSD) was also taken over by the state for the exact same reasons – low performing schools and a $17 million deficit. IUSD found itself asking for additional funds to keep the district operating and the state’s response was a takeover, earlier than expected.

IUSD currently has 12,000 students enrolled and we lose approximately 1,000 kids a year due to the lack of programs and creativity in the way the students are taught. IUSD has yet to come up with a plan to get kids back in school. They have actually done the opposite by removing discriminatory boundaries such as opening advanced placement classes to all students, regardless of whether they earned the right to be there or not.

While Compton Unified School District (CUSD), made a simple move that yielded huge gains.

CUSD recently made headlines when the state recognized the board’s efforts, as they increased student enrollment, which ultimately brought CUSD an additional $1.2 million in funding for the students.

“We tell districts when they are starting out to make attendance a priority that a good goal is a 1 percent improvement in ADA,” said David Kopperud, a consultant with the California Department of Education who helps oversee student attendance programs.

“If they can do that – that’s a real achievement,” he explained. “Anytime a district increases ADA above 1 percent – that’s exceptional.”

Utilizing a new web-based attendance management system, Compton’s one-year improvement resulted in a total gain of 57,326 learning days over the prior year. While it may be too early to draw conclusions, the district’s performance on the state’s Academic Performance Index increased 11 points in 2011 – 2012 to 697 – a recent high point.

So basically, by turning to a web-based attendance management system this single action allowed for decreased attendance error calculations, which most likely resulted in fewer delays in transmitting the data to the attendance clerks in the district.

The district has become much more vigilant in notifying parents when unexcused absences occur and more consistent in meeting with family members when patterns start to emerge.

It’s too bad that Inglewood Unified School District is still taking attendance by pen and paper and then counting on staff to either drive the forms to the district office or expect welfare and attendance clerks to visit the school sites and enter in the attendance forms manually.

For once, IUSD can actually learn from the progress of the Compton school board. If they followed Compton into the 21st century of technology, our children wouldn’t continue to suffer in their lack of educational funding.

Inglewood’s solution to the lower attendance is to have the children attend school on Saturday for four hours a day with enrichment studies in order to capture the missing funding.

Wouldn’t it be easier to increase technology in both the classroom and attendance office? Oh that’s right, all of the funding received from the Microsoft grant went to LaTijera, who I might add is in the bottom five of all schools in the district.

We see that the City of Inglewood has begun their share of promoting the value of IUSD schools when the annual Martin Luther King Day parade was changed from a parade to a festival at Crozier Middle School. Coincidence? Nope, not with the city preparing to sell the bonds the residents approved when Inglewood residents passed Measure GG.

The good news for Compton residents is the recent declaration of two current Compton USD Board Trustees, Satra Zurita and Skyy Fisher, have both filed to leave the school board and enter the City Council elections.

If they are able to make strides in increasing enrollment and funding for the city’s children, imagine what they can do to turn around the city’s fiscal issues? Perhaps, the money earmarked for Compton USD will actually make its way over there.

We’ll see when City of Compton holds their municipal elections on April 16. Take note Inglewood USD Advisory Board – I know we’ll be watching.

By the way, Inglewood should also take a look at Compton USD’s website because IUSD’s website looks like a 5-year-old made it.

OPINION: IUSD is getting on my nerves

By Melissa Hebert, editor of 2UrbanGirls.com

The 2012 – 2013 school year started off with a bang. Inglewood Unified School District was in debt, employee morale was at an all time LOW, the state took us over and we got a state appointed administrator. Heading into the winter recess, shit hasn’t changed. It’s actually getting worse! image

What really has my panties in a bunch is the fact that IUSD, in an attempt to be more accommodating of all students, have made the following changes:
• Advanced Placement (AP) classes are now open to ALL students
• $0 funding for GATE

Why is this disturbing to me? AP classes are supposed to be hard to get into while GATE (a program I was in) is practically non-existent. Angie Marquez, who is over GATE, has explained to us time and time again the district has zero funds for gifted students. So wait, IUSD has ZERO funds for kids who are excelling in school, but if your child is dumb and falls into the basic, below or far below categories (based on their test scores) here is what is available, so ask your individual school about these services:
• access to AP classes
• $1,100 in outside tutoring services
• laptop computer
• free uniforms
• free backpacks
• free supplies

Why do basic and below average students have access to AP and magnet classes? Former State administrator Kent Taylor stated it was a form of “discrimination” to not allow all children to enroll in the classes, and it would be up to the child to remove themselves if the classes where too hard. Well how in the hell does Inglewood Unified School District expect to retain quality children if they don’t invest in their achievements? Why should children who earned a right to be in the class be forced to share space with someone who can barely read? It is no coincidence that if you attend any of the various advisory committee or school site meetings that the hispanic community has taken a visual AND vocal stand against what is transpiring on the IUSD campuses.

They protest, write petitions regarding the piss-poor job the staff and faculty are doing both in the class, the lack of hygiene in the bathrooms, lack of administrators present on campus, staff out getting their hair and nails done as opposed to working on-site, and guess what – the district is listening. As a direct result of their actions, several principals where put on notice by Taylor about their school’s behavior (take note Mrs. Baptiste over at Bennett-Kew). It is still unclear why the program coordinator over there is in charge of a multi-subject school although her credential is for single subject only, but I digress, it is sad when only a handful of African American parents are present and voicing their concerns on the lack of education IUSD is giving our children. Are we that complacent and afraid to speak up? Do we not care about our childrens future?

A word to the wise, if you have a smart child attending one of the many Program Improvement schools in the district, get them out of the Inglewood Unified School District as fast as you can! Wilder Prep is the best school in Inglewood and you have Environmental Charter on Imperial. If you are considering a path that includes private schools, A Better Chance is more than happy to help you out. Just ask your neighbors in Ladera.

OPINION:  Crenshaw High School community meets about reconstitution

By David Rapkin
Editor’s note: The Crenshaw meeting was held Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Last night’s parent meeting at Crenshaw High School was one of the most inspiring exercises in speaking truth to power that I have witnessed in a long time.

The Crenshaw library was packed to overflowing with parents, students, Crenshaw teachers and community members, as well as a large contingent of UTLA activists from the Harbor to the Valley. From the moment Crenshaw’s principal started the meeting with a transparently disingenuous powerpoint, you could feel the anger, and our power, in the room.

A painful chunk of the meeting was taken up by Crenshaw principal Remon Corley and District bigwigs such as LAUSD Superintendent Office Director George Bartleson and Magnet Director Estelle Luckett trying to explain their shameless attempt to reconstitute Crenshaw and convert it to magnets, as if their naked power grab were a thoughtful move to help students and the community. They tried everything from absurd bar graphs “comparing” Crenshaw’s SLCs to district magnets in upper-middle class neighborhoods to pretending that last night’s rigged meeting about a virtual done-deal takeover was simply “an opportunity” for the community to choose their school’s future direction.

Unfortunately for the suits, absolutely no one was buying the bill of goods they were trying to sell.

Once parents got started and seized the floor, 12 parents in a row spoke, including several in Spanish, to issues of the need for continuity and stability at the school, praise for last year’s reform work, calls for real inclusion and for funding. Then it was the students’ turn to bring down the house.

Perhaps one of the most telling moments of the whole night came late in the meeting when Bartleson from the District claimed for the fiftieth time that the “magnet conversion” would bring new resources to the school. A very articulate parent shot back: “if you guys have all these resources, why have you been keeping them from our school all these years? Where have they been all along?”

Again and again, parents and students took the floor (when the brass shut up long enough to give them time to speak) to express their outrage at the fact that District moves to convert the school have happened with no consultation and no discussion with the school community, despite our side’s multiple attempts to engage the District in discussions.

The teachers in the room were angry yet restrained, and let it be the parents’ and students’ space, as was the plan.

It was clear from this excellent balance that the meeting was planned and organized through patient leadership development, through many meetings, and after much democratic planning, strategizing, and sharing of ideas and putting them into action. The way parents and students worked together and led the meeting, with back-up from teachers, represents the kind of work that UTLA urgently needs to invest institutional resources into right now, the kind of organizing that may happen at a few schools because of the organizers who happen to be there, but that needs to happen across the District through a massive infusion of union resources into organizing. It is fantastic that the UTLA officers are helping tremendously with the Crenshaw fight; now they need to use the resources that only they control to reproduce that power at all our schools.

Last night’s meeting reminded all of us how exciting it would be if UTLA really worked with our community partners to wage this fight everywhere.

There were moments when you almost felt sorry for the six-figure District people. Luckett, the Magnet Director, struggled to get a hearing on the strength of the argument that she too “looked like the students at Crenshaw” and lived right in the community. Unfortunately for her, the actual community members knew that whatever she looks like and wherever she came from and wherever she lives, last night her job was to front for the absent “Dr.” John Deasy and his unilateral decision to re–make Crenshaw in his own image. Deasy’s plan to make Crenshaw’s entire staff re-apply for their jobs and to squander years of tremendously successful, collaborative reforms at the school only “works” if he gets parents, students and teachers at Crenshaw to acquiesce and do what he says.

From the looks of things, that’s going to be a tall order. The Crenshaw community is united in the conviction that the authentic, home-grown, foundation-backed reforms that Crenshaw has been engaging for the past two and a half years represent by far the best course for the school. Everyone knows that Deasy’s phony “concern” for the Crenshaw community, and the fake, half-baked “reform” ideas he pulled out of who-knows-where to impose on the school, are little more than his attempt to punish the entire Crenshaw community for daring to do something meaningful and for daring to organize from the grassroots. Deasy quite clearly isn’t about helping schools; his goal is to control schools and weaken their independence, at all costs.

And our goal is to fight back with all our collective strength and to force the powers that be to fully fund our schools and allow all of us to run them democratically and collectively in the interests of our entire communities. Last night’s meeting was a very important step in this direction.

David Rapkin teaches at Youth Opportunities Unlimited Alternative High School in South LA and is a member of PEAC (Progressive Educators for Action)

To read the Los Angeles Times story about the Crenshaw meeting, click here.