Resolution: Board Meeting Accessibility to the Public

Whereas, it is a stated goal of the Los Angeles Unified School District to have “parent and community engagement”;

Whereas, the Brown Act ensures that “All meetings of the legislative body of a local agency shall be open and public, and all persons shall be permitted to attend any meeting of the legislative body of a local agency, except as otherwise provided in this chapter”;

Whereas, a meeting is not truly open to the public if it is held at a time when most members of the public have other obligations;

Whereas, both parents work in 60.6% of married-couple families with children and “about two-thirds of single mothers are working outside the home” and, therefore, have difficulty attending meetings if they are held during working hours;

Whereas, the public portion of LAUSD Board meetings often scheduled to start at 1:00 PM;

Whereas, a meeting is not truly open to the public if it is held in a room that is consistently not large enough to accommodate the number of people who seek to attend;

Whereas, the LAUSD Board Room has a maximum occupancy of 155 persons;

Whereas, “it is easier for families, teachers and school leaders to speak to the school board without having to wait eight to 10 hours”;

Whereas, LAUSD Board meetings can often last seven or more hours;

Whereas, outside organization often manipulate access to the meeting so that speakers are stacked with speakers that only represent one viewpoint.

Resolved, no regularly scheduled open meeting of the Board shall occur during the hours when school is in session, during the hours of regularly scheduled bus transportation, or during the time after school closing that it would take to commute from the furthest school in the district to the meeting location using public transportation;

Resolved, half of all scheduled Board meetings shall begin no earlier than 6:00 PM if they are held on a weekday;

Resolved, the Board meeting that hears public comment regarding the following year’s budget must be held on a weekend, must be held at a site that accommodates the number of people expected to testify, must not limit the number of speakers and should not include any non-budget related items;

Resolved, the Board directs the Superintendent to put in place a plan to accommodate any members of the public that cannot fit into the Board meeting room so that they can watch a remote feed of the meeting in a room solely dedicated to that purpose and still be given access to presenting to the Board;

Resolved, the Board directs the Board Secretariat to ensure that agendas are written with the expectation that meetings will not last longer than four hours and to schedule additional meetings in the same month if additional time is needed;

Resolved, that if there are speakers both for and against a resolution, the Board Secretariat must ensure that both sides are represented on the speaker list.