Thursday, May 28, 2009

Press release from the Hunger Strike and Teach-In for the Kids of LAUSD: Hungry for a Better Education


Media Contacts:

Fast Participant (Español) – Jose Lara
(714) 864-0543

Fast Participant – Sean Leys
(323) 490-2412

Teacher Organizer – Kelly Flores
(323) 286-5244

Teachers, Parents, and Community Members Announce Hunger Strike and Teach-In for the Kids of LAUSD: Hungry for a Better Education

Los Angeles, California – Nearly a dozen individuals, including LAUSD teachers, concerned community, and a single father will undergo a full-fledged, water-only fast beginning the evening of Wednesday, May 27th, 2009.

The objective of these actions is to call attention to School Board Members Garcia, Flores, and Vladovic’s plan to put nearly a half billion dollars of federal stimulus money into a savings account while raising class sizes and laying off some of the district’s best, most exciting, vibrant new teachers. Our demand is for a new LAUSD budget that defends students’ classrooms.

LAUSD has received nearly a billion dollars in federal stimulus money. President Obama has repeatedly announced that the purpose and top priority for this money should be to keep jobs and to inject the money as quickly as possible into the economy; however, Board Members Garcia, Flores, and Vladovic have voted to approve a budget that does just the opposite. Their budget calls for saving half of the money and laying off 2,500 desperately needed teachers, the future of the profession. Worse still, their plan calls for raising class size – the single biggest factor in determining students’ success.

Hunger strikers are willing to continue the fast until all demands are met. Such drastic cuts call for drastic actions.


1) Protect out students’ education by NOT increasing class size
2) Protect the future of education in LAUSD by NOT laying off our new teachers

Fasters’ Itinerary

Wednesday-Friday: Following the press conference, fasters will be working in their communities building support. Teachers will be at their schools teaching. They may be contacted individually.
Saturday: Hungry for Education Teach-in and Speak Out. Fasters will be available at this event.
Sunday and afterwards: Fasters will begin an encampment and be available for interviews. 5:00pm, Location TBA.

Press Conference
May 27th, 2009 at 4:30 PM
Gratts Elementary School
309 Lucas Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90017

Hungry for Education Teach-in
May 30st, 2009 at 11:00 AM
Centro Cultural Francisco Villa
2100 Maple Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90011

Fasters (Partial list):

Sean Leys
Teacher at Lincoln High School, fast organizer, English only
(323) 490-2412

Jose Lara
Single father of child at First Street Elementary School, teacher at Santee High School, fast organizer, English and Español
(714) 864-0543

Brenda Barragan
Pink Slipped Teacher at Santee High School, English and Español
(323) 533-8976

Elizabeth Juarez
Third grade teacher at Hooper Avenue Elementary, English and Español
(818) 239-9395

Alexia Lewis
Substitute teacher at Lincoln High School, artist, civil rights activist, English only
(323) 369-5109

Gladys Mazariego-Hamdi
Math and special education teacher at West Adams Preparatory High School, English and Español
(818) 568-8004

Martin Terrones
Filmmaker, community activist, founder / executive director of Chicano/Latino Artists for Social Equality (CLASE), English and Español
(310) 591-7560


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