July 2, 2013: A 68-year-old supporter of the teachers' unions was elected president of the Los Angeles Unified School board tonight in a 5-2 vote that Barbara Jones, reporting for the LA Daily News, calls a "seismic shift in focus" for the board.
At left, Vladovic stands by during a talk by Deasy, from the LA School Report, March 2013.
...Lawyer-turned teacher Monica Ratliff, newly sworn in to her seat representing the east San Fernando Valley, joined the 5-2 majority supporting Vladovic... who has represented the South Bay for six years. The dissenting votes were cast by Garcia and West Valley board member Tamar Galatzan, whom she'd nominated to succeed her.
The new board leadership signals a potential change in direction for the district and raises questions about the future of Superintendent John Deasy. Vladovic has become increasingly critical of Deasy's reform agenda, particularly initiatives opposed by United Teachers Los Angeles, such as merit pay and the use of student test scores in performance evaluations
For LAUSD political junkies, the liveliest reporting (on the etiquette of tweeting at public meetings) from today's board meeting is on Scott Folsom's on 4LAKids.
Hillel Aron, covering the meeting in The LA School Report, dished: Pre-meeting rumors had [board member Steve] Zimmer neck and neck with Vladovic, but those turned out to be off the mark, as Zimmer was never nominated. Neither [Tamar] Galatzan nor [newly elected LA] Mayor Garcetti (rumored to be working behind the scenes) were able to persuade Zimmer or [newly elected Monica] Ratliff to break from the bloc of independent and/or union-allied board members...
In an blog post on March 5, 2013, Aron spelled out some examples of the rocky Deasy-Vladovic relationship:
[Vladovic] voted and spoke for Deasy when Deasy was first named to head LAUSD back in 2011 – a vote from which Zimmer abstained. “We have chosen a great leader to follow in the footsteps of a great leader,” Vladovic is quoted as saying in the LA Daily News. But then for a time things seem to have gone awry between the two men.
A source inside LAUSD said that Vladovic, at some point last year, made it known to other board members that he wanted to get rid of Deasy. In October 2012, the board voted 6-0 to extend Deasy’s contract one year. The missing vote? Dr. Vladovic. The Times reported he left for “personal reasons.”
In December of the same year, Vladovic proposed that Deasy be required to get board approval before submitting grant applications — a requirement Deasy hated. ”Every grantor has an agenda,” said Vladovic at the time. “They superimpose an ideology on us.”
Last but not least, Vladovic objected to Deasy’s initial plan to give tablet computers to every student in LAUSD, arguing with Board President Monica Garcia that he thought teacher salaries should be a priority over technology.....