Early Wednesday, 1,200 key local and national leaders gathered at the L.A. Convention Center for United Way’s 2013 Education Summit - a groundbreaking discussion on how to strengthen low-performing schools through partnerships in our classrooms and communities.
The sold-out event was kicked off with a morning plenary featuring philanthropist Eli Broad, Wasserman Foundation President and CEO Casey Wasserman, LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy and LAUSD Board President Monica Garcia.
The conversation centered on the panelists’ investments of time, energy and dollars into L.A.’s ailing public school system which, according to Garcia, has secured some significant gains in recent years.
“As we grow this movement towards a student-focused agenda – this coalition to put our kids first, we’re pushing ourselves as a community to rebuild LAUSD and we are making great strides,” she said. “The key is to remember is that when we get it right, the world changes.”
Three concurrent breakout sessions immediately followed the Summit’s opening ceremony, with the first two focusing on “How Businesses Are Making an Impact On Our Schools” and the importance of “Establishing Key Partnerships to Support Our Educators.” Doubling as a pre-election debate on the future of education in L.A., the third session showcased the five leading candidates in this year’s mayoral race: Eric Garcetti, Wendy Greuel, Kevin James, Jan Perry and Emanuel Pleitez.
Here's full video coverage of the debate:
The nearly day-long Summit wrapped up with an afternoon panel discussion, featuring Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Newark Mayor Cory Booker, which tackled complex issues such as public school funding and accountability, teacher effectiveness and parent engagement.
According to Mayor Villaraigosa, real progress could only be achieved through cross-sector collaboration and a willingness to take action on behalf of our struggling students.
“Everyone – parents, teachers, students, politicians and business leaders – should be held accountable for the success of our schools,” he said. “We have to change the way we do things and we need to stand up and commit to reforming the system and helping our kids the way that United Way of Greater L.A. has.”
Watch our video of the panel with the Mayors:
Hear our President and CEO, Elise Buik's speech from the event:
For more info on how to support UWGLA's mission to Create Pathways to Graduation for the students of L.A. County, please click here.
Check out press coverage of the 2013 Education Summit below:
Los Angeles Times "L.A. Now" blog by Howard Blume
Radio interview with UWGLA President & CEO Elise Buik on KCRW's "Which Way, L.A.?"
Here's a slideshow from the event: