Education

LA School District Superintendent Says Day 1 Of Los Angeles Teacher Strike Cost District $25 Million

Screenshot/ Twitter via United Teachers Los Angeles

Daily Caller News Foundation logo
Neetu Chandak Education and Politics Reporter

The Los Angeles Unified School District’s (LAUSD) superintendent claims the first day of teacher strikes on Monday cost the district $25 million.

LAUSD superintendent Austin Beutner got this number based on student attendance, which determines the district’s funding, and the number of people not at work, according to a Tuesday conference.

“So, the district, on a day like yesterday, would lose approximately $25 million in funding,” Beutner said in a LAUSD Facebook live video.

He clarified $10 million of the $25 million was from wages of people not at work.

“About $15 million that would have been better spent to reduce class size, to hire more nurses, counselors, librarians… Each day we should be asking ourselves, ‘Why can’t we get this solved?’ Let’s finish this contract. Let’s put that behind us. Let’s move forward. Let’s get back to Sacramento, where I was last week. Let’s keep working for more funding so we can do more at our schools,” Beutner said, according to ABC 7.

Teachers represented by the United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) union walked out of classes Monday to protest higher pay and smaller class sizes, among other issues. LAUSD claims UTLA’s demands are unreasonable as the district currently runs an annual $500 million deficit. (RELATED: Los Angeles School District Braces For Massive Teacher Walkout, But Officials’ Preparation Might Spell Disaster For Students)

Nearly 600,000 students are in the district. LAUSD saw 141,631 attend classes Monday, though this is not the final count with reports from 54 schools missing as of Monday afternoon. The district also received nearly 3,000 calls from family members and parents of students.

Caliornia Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom called on LAUSD and UTLA to get back to the negotiating table.

“This impasse is disrupting the lives of too many kids and their families,” Newsom said in a statement Monday. “I strongly urge all parties to go back to the negotiating table and find an immediate path forward that puts kids back into classrooms and provides parents certainty.”

LAUSD originally claimed in a press conference 3,500 people were striking, but later retweeted LA School Police who gave an estimate of 20,000 demonstrators.

UTLA says more than 50,000 teachers, parents, students and community members were part of the strike, however.

Big name Democrats like New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, California Sen. Kamala Harris and Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard support the strike.

WATCH:

LAUSD and UTLA did not immediately respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

Follow Neetu on Twitter

Send tips to: neetu@dailycallernewsfoundation.org

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.