Cue the “Leave it to Cleaver” theme:
Voice over announcer: “Leave it to Cleaver, starring the Los Angeles Unified School Board of Education, written by Gates and Broad, and John Deasy as the Cleaver.”
Cleaver and the Board reviewing the budget acknowledge that the teachers are the only body of workers within the district that has not been granted a salary increase or a cost of living increase for seven straight years. In fact, the teachers had to take furlough days, which is a pay cut, and their medical benefits are reduced.
The Cleaver speaks: “Okay, we offered the teachers a 2% increase after 7 years without one and they declined. So here’s what we should do: Cut the 10% lowest teachers by seniority, increase class sizes across the board, then offer the teachers a 3% increase saying it is justified because they have extremely larger classes.”
A board member asks, “What if they decline that?”
He responds. “We will cut library aides, classroom aides, music, drama, and art teachers, custodians, and office clerks. Then when the teachers have to teach music, drama, and art too, clean their own rooms, and do more paperwork they will agree. If they don’t then all itinerant teachers who help special needs students will be terminated.”
Another Board member, “What if they refuse and go on strike?”
The Cleaver answers, “They will be playing right into our hands. There are lots of retired teachers, aides, and substitutes ready to take over the classrooms. And we will save millions everyday in salaries and be able to do what we want with that money. We can start new departments, hire new administrators for here and the local offices, order even more tests, and give everyone downtown a raise.”
“When the teachers final settle the strike and return to work, so much time will have been lost that the test scores will assuredly go way down. And we can blame the teachers.”
Voice over announcer: “Leave it to Cleaver” is brought to you by Pearson, Apple, Walmart, Microsoft, and the Times.