Parent Teacher Associations are meant to be apolitical, but there are paid adverts by the “Santa Monica Malibu PTAs council” (SMMPTA) that say vote yes on measure SMC.
The SMMPTA is an independent lobbying organization that is using the reputation of our local PTAs to push a ballot measure that seems to have little to do with educating our K-12 children.
Measure SMC is a bond measure for construction for Santa Monica College, with a few crumbs promised to SMMUSD that gives the SMMPTA a cover story for supporting it.
Why is the SMMPTA not lobbying against a different ballot measure that will seriously damage our children’s learning abilities (https://smdp.com/2022/09/30/no-on-hmp/)? (Unlike their knee-jerk reaction to support the SMC bond measure.)
The College board and School board only seem interested in massive construction projects, which aligns with the SMMPTA’s lobbying.
This relationship appears worryingly cozy, and it suggests that the SMMPTA may be more under the control of the school board than parents. Lobbying groups identifying with PTAs should be independent of school boards in order to provide alternative viewpoints. The opinions of PTAs should be just that, and not the opinions of the school board.
Perhaps, if they did exploit the SMMPTA in this way, then the elected school board might be able to repackage issues that do not benefit kids, but that might support board members’ agendas, into issues which look like they have parental support – like the current SMC ballot measure.
I urge all PTA members to question why the SMMPTA seems to be spending large sums lobbying for SMC and the construction industry, which will provide virtually no benefit to our children’s education when, for example, it would be better if they were lobbying to protect our children’s thinking and learning abilities from the very real scourge of legalized, high-potency drugs.
Peter Borresen – SMMUSD parent and PTA member