The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Los Angeles Schools:
Budget Cuts Breed Neglect and Abuse

Feb 20, 2012

Los Angeles school district officials removed, overnight, the whole staff of Miramonte elementary school in South Los Angeles. This is the higher-ups’ response to the arrests of two Miramonte teachers on charges of sexually abusing students.

The accusations are certainly horrible. But the removal of the school’s entire staff is an insult on top of injury. The same authorities, who have short-changed schools like Miramonte for decades, are now casting blame on all teachers – and further disrupting the education of students – to cover up for their own neglect.

With more than 1,200 students, Miramonte is severely overcrowded. Like other working-class schools, it has been hit especially hard by budget cuts, which have resulted in elimination of staff, as well as extracurricular programs.

Teachers at working-class schools like Miramonte don’t even have the time to teach their students properly – let alone to get to know them a little better through extracurricular activities, or to know what’s going on in other classrooms.

Child abusers infesting an elementary school – that’s a horrible thought. But what’s even worse is that fertile ground for such crimes has been laid down by authorities – government officials who keep cutting the money from public education, and school board officials who pass the budget cuts straight on to schools.