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'Hot for Teachers' video produced by L.A. parents protesting school budget cuts

The parents at Wonderland Avenue Elementary in Laurel Canyon were irate about the proposed education cuts from the state budget. So instead of going to Sacramento, they went straight to Hollywood.

The school’s PTA president came up with the idea of creating a video, and one parent suggested they ask Brian Austin Green (of "Beverly Hills, 90210" fame) to star in it. Green, whose son attends the school, agreed, and he got his girlfriend, actress Megan Fox, to costar.

The result was a four-minute short called “Hot for Teachers” that went live on Funny or Die, a viral comedy video site, on Wednesday. It begins with the Wonderland principal addressing a group of parents yelling about the budget cuts. Then Green gets a call on his phone from Fox.

“People are freaking out about these budget cuts,” he says into the phone. “It’s like Attica in here.”

Green tells Fox to wait for him in the library, and on her way there, she encounters a group of fifth-graders sprawled on the floor and on top of cabinets because of overcrowding. They mistake her for their new teacher. The kids tell Fox their teacher was laid off and their class was combined with another.

“The kids in this class are multiplying faster than my head lice,” said one of the students as she scratches  her head.

“It’s no wonder so many of us end up in prison,” laments another.

The video ends with Green and Fox urging viewers to sign a petition on the Say No to Cuts website and to “call, write, and annoy the governor until he cries for his mommy.”

Wonderland parents wrote the script and and produced the video with the help of Funny or Die, said John Koch, an entertainment public relations expert whose daughter attends the school. He helped write the script.

“The video is an exaggeration. It’s meant to be funny, but the question is, when is enough enough?” Koch said. “How far are these cuts going to go? It’s a tough situation for a lot of people.”

-- My-Thuan Tran

 
Comments () | Archives (37)

I have an idea. Since the Children are so important, and the Taxpayers can't afford to fund their luxurious way of life anymore, I propose this: Teachers have all debts for financial aid forgiven; Those who become teachers, after a set period of time are refunded college tuition costs; College professors show their solidarity and concern by taking massive salary and benefit cuts, agree to work until death; Communal housing be built near schools for teachers to live in, limited to 1 child per household; teachers receive minimal stipend yearly for services, but free housing, utilities and community provided food. Teachers work for life, when they can't teach in the classroom anymore, they can perhaps provide child care for children. As money is limited, when they become deathly ill we save the resources for the children and put them, mercifully, to sleep. That's a life of dedication and devotion where Children and FIRST!

good work guys love the clip:)

Koch said, "[The video] is an exaggeration. It’s meant to be funny......" No man this video is not an exaggeration. This is what is happening in our schools! Arnold do something... Save the Teachers of Los Angeles and support public education at all levels!

I will try to address all of the negative comments below. For starters, parents HAVE stepped up to the plate to support their local public schools. Our school is minutes from Wonderland and we raised $120,000 this year to cover budget cuts but have to raise $360,000 next year to attend a FREE PUBLIC school.

Next year the cuts we are facing in LAUSD:
1. principal is being cut to half time (set to work two schools!!!)
2. janitor cut
3. art programs cut
4. paper supplies cuts
5. bathroom supplies cut
6. nurse cut,
7. math specialist cut
8. class size is going up
9. school year cut
10. potentially losing FOUR out of 13 teachers ("worthless unfireable teachers" who just happened to have raised our test scores from 490 to 850 in 8 years!!! Yep they just eat bon bons all day. It's why were being reviewed as a California Distinguished School.)
11. librarian cut
12. yard aids cut

We've already been paying for a PE teacher and technology and aids for years. Test score improved because our teachers are magnificent and our parents gave 100% of their time and their funds to constantly fill the budget voids. How much more should we be expected to cover??!! This is a video for PUBLIC school. Mr. Green is a PARENT at that school. He knows exactly what is happening. Class size IS relevant when there are no chairs for kids to sit. Perhaps Japanese teachers teach in spacious auditoriums and can use corporal punishment. Who knows!!? Silly to compare.

For those of you insisting parents "dig deep", how many of you had parents who were asked pay $1500-$3000 per child to attend a free school? And don't forget to pile the monthly fundraisers on top of it all! I had it all growing up in a California school system. Great schools that were truly FREE with art, teachers, supplies...all of it. Our local private schools run $28,000 and up. Not everyone can afford that, especially not with 2-3 kids.

This "snarky skit" was paid for BY PARENTS not LAUSD. In fact, dealing with LAUSD as a parent myself, my guess is not only did these parents pay out of pocket, they probably had to pay LAUSD for rental usage of the property.

Last but not least, if you don't feel that as a childless resident you should be investing in the children in your community, remember those kids will grow up to be the ones voting for your city laws, investing in your community, and leading the way into the future. You can support them, or watch their schools crumble. Just don't complain when they vandalize your home because they have nothing better to do since they dropped out of school. This video is SCARY, not funny, because it's painfully 100% TRUE for LAUSD families.

Very funny! It's an exaggeration but seriously based on what really IS happening. I am a teacher in L.A. Due to budget cuts (and some things which were already in place before the budget cuts) the nurse is there only twice a week, school psychologist same, we no longer have an assistant principal, 4 general ed. teacher assistants for a school of 465 kids (they're used for yard supervision and split up in 30 minute intervals amongst a few teachers), custodial hours were cut (1 guy has to clean the same amount of space in a lot less time- the rooms are a lot dirtier now), kinder through 3rd went from 20 to 24 students, plus 3 more students from the 3rd/4th grade combo...The only difference is that our students and parent population is mostly immigrant, mostly high school grads- I've never really felt that everybody else really cares (except to criticize the many wrongdoings of the LAUSD) what happens to the L.A.U.S.D. kids...

We are fully reaping what we sowed with Proposition 13. I taught elementary school in Southern California (Corona-Norco Unified) in the 1990s during much better economic times. Even then my fifth grade class sizes were 34, we had no P.E. teachers, no art teachers, and very limited access to music teachers and counselors. Anyone who doesn't understand the impact of large class sizes has never had to teach a large class. I no longer live in California but I fear we have killed paradise.

the top hedge fund manager made 4 billion last year and paid 15% tax. That is twice all of the NBA players combined.

How long will we allow ourselves to be raped by the financial industry?

Increase the retirement age and cut pensions and you can keep the teachers...pretty simple math!

I went to Wonderland and culminated three years ago. I tutored the red-headed girl in the video when she was in second grade. I love that place!

How about a workable idea...and I think you meant "where children are FIRST", guess you missed the day your teacher taught proofreading.

How about the feds stepping in and giving teaching jobs to returning vets coming home from Iraq and Afghanistan so they won't join the massive ranks of the jobless, using Department of Veteran's Affairs money, so the state of CA won't be on the hook?

Really great video, however it is not just the governor that influences these cuts, lets not forget about the legislature.

 
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