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LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy's resignation unclear

There are some mixed signals about LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy and his reported resignation.
October 25, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
There are some mixed signals about Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy and his reported resignation.

In a statement sent via text message to Eyewitness News Friday morning, Deasy said he would not discuss the topic other than to specify that he has not submitted a letter of resignation.

He ended his short message by saying he will have more to say after Tuesday, which is when Deasy is supposed to meet with the Board of Education for his scheduled evaluation.

Deasy, who makes $330,000 a year, received a contract extension that would have kept him on the job through 2015. The terms of his contract stipulated the extension would be automatic, provided he received a positive evaluation by the end of October.

Deasy's statement comes after Eyewitness News confirmed that Deasy called members of the Board of Education on Thursday, telling them he is resigning in February. Eyewitness News confirmed this with the LAUSD board president.

So, is it a misunderstanding or a prediction of what's to come? The answer will likely be made public Tuesday.

Deasy started his tenure in 2011 after Ramon Cortines retired. He is known for pushing a reform-minded agenda during his two years on the job.

He has also been criticized for the district's response to several scandals, including the ambitious $1 billion iPad rollout, which flapped when some students hacked into the systems.

Louis Klotz, who has two first-graders at Darby Elementary School, says he wasn't a fan of the iPads.

"I honestly think it's ridiculous because that money could have been spent on putting good teachers in classrooms, making the classroom size smaller, you know, instead of iPads. That stuff can come later. We can teach our kids at home," said Klotz.

Deasy has overseen the district's response to several scandals as well, including at Miramonte Elementary School, where teachers were accused of molesting students.

Earlier this year United Teachers Los Angeles gave Deasy a failing grade.

UTLA President Warren Fletcher said he views Deasy's resignation as an opportunity to "hit a reset button."

"It's no secret that the UTLA and the superintendent have had our differences over the last two to three years," Fletcher said. "But at this point, we'll just wait and find out. I'm sure he will make a statement."

For parents like Klotz, who says he has no bias for or against Deasy, the main concern is what happens in the classroom.

"To me it doesn't make a difference whether he resigns or not. It's just I have kids in first grade in the public school system and I just want them to get a good education instead of bouncing all around, you know, with the curriculum changing all the time," Klotz said.

Mayor Eric Garcetti weighed in on the rumors of Deasy's resignation.

"It may be that there will be a transition. This is going be an evolving story. I've certainly be talking to many parties, and I won't speak any further on that today, but if there is a transition, it is very important we don't lose the momentum and for us to make sure we have a board that's focused on results, not on politics," Garcetti said.


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