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Richard Vladovic Will Continue To Serve As LAUSD Board President

FILE - L.A. Unified School Board member Richard Vladovic speaks during a meeting on Aug. 22, 2017. (Kyle Stokes/KPCC)
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Richard Vladovic was elected to serve a second consecutive term as president of the L.A. Unified School District board of education at the board's annual meeting on Tuesday.

While the position has few formal advantages over those of the other six board members -- the main responsibility of the board president is to run the meetings -- Vladovic's reelection is noteworthy because it signals a need for stability as the board navigates a host of unprecedented issues.

When he was nominated for consideration, Vladovic -– who represents Board District 7, covering Gardena, San Pedro, and parts of South L.A. -– said he wasn't seeking another term.

"We've got some troubling waters ahead of us as board members, and many major decisions to make," Vladovic told the board in the meeting, which was held via Zoom. "I can list a litany of things in the next six months that we're going to be dealing with."

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Vladovic did not name the specific challenges, but here are two of the elephants in the room:

  • POLICE: Last week, in a victory for activists and critics of police in schools, the board voted 4-3 to reduce funding for the district's police department by about 35%, and to redirect the funds to psychiatric social workers and counselors in schools with more Black students. In an emotional meeting that went well into the night, Vladovic joined the two other former administrators on the board in vocally opposing this cut.
  • COVID-19: The district continues to grapple with the effects of the ongoing pandemic, including whether and how schools will reopen in the fall, and how the district will support vulnerable students like those with special needs, limited Internet access and other technology for online learning, and students who are learning English.

"What I didn't want was a controversy today because, above all, we need to get together and face some of the challenges that many of the parents have said to us, and how we can improve the delivery of the instructional program during this terrible, terrible pandemic," Vladovic said.
Vladovic was first chosen to be board president in 2013 and served until 2015. He was elected to the position again a year ago.

Before becoming a school board member, Vladovic was a principal and district administrator.



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