Sunday, December 12, 2010

LAUSD Ready to Sell Out to Highest Bidder

On Tuesday, LAUSD board members will vote on loosening the district's ban on corporate sponsorship and advertising on campuses as a way to help meet budget shortfalls. LAUSD hopes to raise $18 billion from the plan.

Corporations would be allowed to place logos on virtually any surface within LAUSD. Melissa Infusino, LAUSD's director of partnerships, said that only healthy and appropriate products would be allowed, ruling out the obvious tobacco and alcohol ads.However, this would leave open the possibility of advertising by educational management organizations and charter schools. private for-profit tutoring companies, private test prep. companies and for-profit colleges.

The only thing that is new here is the desperation of LAUSD. Schools have been selling ad space and giving away marketing opportunities for years. Kiosks and marquees often have ads. Year books and school newspapers also sell ads. There are often ads up in cafeterias and bulletin boards. Josten's ads abound during second semester enticing kids to waste their money on cheesy class rings they'll end up tossing within a year. The military recruiters, while not corporate, also give away free binders, pens and sample MREs (meals ready to eat) to entire kids to volunteer.

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