Foshay as official Democratic school (** updated)

At FoshayAt yesterday's Angelides and Villaraigosa rally in South Los Angeles, I sat for a time with Pilar Marrero, the political columnist and Features Editor for La Opinión. In today's paper I see she picked up too on the use of Foshay Learning Center, a K-12 LAUSD school, as a campaign venue for the Democratic candidate. Marrero takes it farther than anybody I saw, reporting in a sidebar that district officials objected to a brazen partisan role for the students and refused an Angelides campaign request that the students hold signs. They did miss class time and chanted "Go Phil Go" in the auditorium. Marrero writes that the Angelides campaign first told school officials the rally would be held outside, but switched it to inside late in the game. Marrero's story quotes Lucy Okumu from the district's office of external affairs and from the LAUSD policy, with a reply from Angelides spokesman Nick Papas. It's all in Spanish at the link, along with the mainbar coverage.

* More coverage: Thursday's LA Weekly also quotes Okumu and Foshay principal Veronique Wills, who says that Michael Trujillo — who works for Villaraigosa's independent fundraising committee — told her the district had approved the fundraiser. District officials said otherwise. Also, "Foshay administrators drew the line at the midday request by the Angelides camp for even more kids to fill the auditorium," the Weekly reports. ** Also: In Thursday's L.A. Times.

Photo inside the Foshay auditorium, by Robert Galbraith of Reuters. Google's deficient auto-translation of the La Opinión story follows after the jump:

Mess by meeting in school

The audience of the school Forshay Learning Center was prepared to receive to the democratic candidate by the gubernatura Phil Angelides: great signboards with their name and slogans of campaign adorned the scene, were several groups of present students and the band of the school touched its better pieces.

The problem is that the regulation of the Unified Scholastic District of Los Angeles (LAUSD) prohibits to use the interior of the establishments for political events.

“The schools can be used for political events, neither individual nor thematic political campaigns”, establishes the regulation, from which the Opinion obtained copy, to emphasize the more ahead that: “From time to time, candidates and civil employees wish to visit the premises of the LAUSD… can speak of subjects in general, but not make no type of political persuasion.”

Lucy Okumu, ordered of external subjects of the LAUSD, indicated that “generally we give the welcome to the today leaders so that they interact with the leaders the morning… in the case of this event, we were notified after he himself already had been calendarizado… we did not request that the students participated.”

According to sources of the LAUSD, people of the office of the mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who participated in the event, and members of the campaign of Angelides, approached the school and requested to use it.

These sources indicated that the central office of the district was notified last hour of Friday and that they maintained talks with personnel of Angelides and directors of the school to decide that it would not directly become jumbled the students and who single would be present those groups to which the event did not make lose classes.

The event, that was announced for 1:15, began one hour after the announced thing and lasted until last the three of afternoon. Groups of students entered and left the audience and a student faint during the speech of Angelides. It was part of a group of students who remained standing up behind the politicians during almost one hour and in several occasions they shouted eslogans as `Go Phil Go'. The duration of the event caused that a group of students lost part of a class, said the sources of the LAUSD.

Nick Papas, spokesman of the campaign of Angelides, said that “we had permission of the district. Angelides had visited this school before and wanted to do it again, but some students got passionate and moved… what we could do.”

The mayor said, in a meeting with the press after the event, that had not been its decision to put the children there, but of the school. “In any case, it is important to integrate to the young people in the discussion of civic subjects,” emphasized. Spokesmen of their office did not respond to calls of La Opinion to know their reaction before the annoyance expressed by spokesmen the LAUSD.

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