News


School board to discuss new calendar options tonight

Report will include staff survey results, community feedback

The Pleasanton school board will meet Tuesday night to hear a report on the non-traditional calendar for the 2015-16 school year in an open session at 7 p.m. in the school district's board room at 4665 Bernal Ave.

The report will share the results of the staff survey and community feedback to provide reasoning for the calendar options under discussion.

There are three possible calendar options being looked at, an early-start calendar and two modified calendars.

The early-start calendar offers everything the current traditional calendar has but school will start and end earlier, the first semester will end before winter break, spring break will be longer and summer break will be shorter.

The modified calendars offer an early start/finish for the school year, a fall break in October, the first semester ending before winter break, a longer spring break and a shorter summer break.

In the same open session, the board will also discuss if the Staggered Literacy Program will continue for third graders.

At the May 13 board meeting, the board approved continuing the program for first and second grade during the 2014-15 school year but they delayed making a decision on continuing it for third grade due to mixed results received from third grade teachers, the increased third grade curriculum along with Common Core Standards and the loss of instruction time.

Another item on the agenda includes the discussion and possible action to approve a resolution "authorizing the issuance of PUSD 2013 General Obligation Refunding Bonds with an authorization not to exceed $13.0M."

At the closed session Tuesday starting at 5 p.m., the board will discuss "the discipline, release or dismissal of a public employee," and also will confer with legal counsel about "Anticipated Litigation Significant exposure to litigation."

The board will also appoint the director of special education, Amador Valley High School's vice principals and Foothill High School's vice principal.

Any action taken in closed session will be reported at the regular school board meeting.

Comments

Posted by Pleasanton Resident, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on May 24, 2014 at 11:17 pm

Hope the Special Ed. director is not the one which is running that department as an interim.


Posted by Right, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 25, 2014 at 9:23 am

Yet another indicator of how incompetent the public schools are. Add this to the scandalous removal of Jon Vranesh and its clear we need to disband the union, fire the administrators, and replace the Board as we prepare to go Charter. Only Charter will give us freedom from the corruption and incompetance.


Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on May 25, 2014 at 11:42 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

"There are three possible calendar options being looked at, an early-start calendar and two modified calendars." Still no calendars that show exactly how these proposals fit into an actual calendar.


Posted by Me Too, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 25, 2014 at 11:18 pm

Right - How does a proposed calendar change have anything to do with a school being incompetent? And there is no evidence to suggest that charter schools are any better than public school? Get rid of the union? You might want to be careful what you wish for, schools are required to have qualified teachers, those with high demand qualifications (science and math) could seriously raise salaries levels.


Posted by Me Too, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 25, 2014 at 11:23 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger - I guess I don't understand what you mean, because the options that board are discussing are clearly outlined in the presentation on the website. These are also not dramatic changes. Even the most drastic moves the start 3 weeks back and adds a 2 week break in fall and adds a second week to spring break. My guess is that they will go with the option of moving the start to early august with a 1 week fall break (the rest being the same as it is now) and ending in late May.


Posted by William Tell, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 26, 2014 at 7:56 am

I think Kathleen's point is a good one. Just like the Vranesh situation, everyone profits from more public information. Its good we have such vigulent people in the community.


Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on May 26, 2014 at 8:19 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Me Too, "My guess is . . . " The best way for the community--most importantly families--to be able to understand these proposals is to see the actual start date, break dates, holidays, end dates, and the impact to programs like band and fall sports for each proposal. The district's web page has the survey from Palo Alto, but didn't include the links to those types of calendars. PAUSD projected out for three years, presenting to the board and community well over a dozen versions for consideration. Here is a link to the first presentation: Web Link The conversation shifted when the those actual dates were presented. Here are the final nine (about 2/3 into the packet): Web Link The board choice is here: Web Link

I continue to be amazed at what this board will accept as a report for decision making, and not just on this topic.


Posted by Pamela, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on May 26, 2014 at 9:18 am

I agree with Right... as far as "Add this to the scandalous removal of Jon Vranesh and its clear we need to disband the union, fire the administrators, and replace the Board." I cant believe they still want to go through with this calendar change after all of the insanity they have been causing.

And still... no notification from the district, that they will even have these discussions. We have to hear it here...on PWeekly? What about those parents who don't read the Weekly's website, or those that don't spend their free time on the districts website? It is really unfair that there is no notification or surveys for the parents to see how they feel about the calendar change. They surveyed us about homework, why nothing for this... which will affect many, many families in Ptown.


Posted by Sirena, a resident of Val Vista
on May 26, 2014 at 10:10 am

Maybe the school board should work for the Zone 7 because they are all incompetent.


Posted by Here's Jonny, a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on May 26, 2014 at 1:16 pm

If we disband the union and go the charter school road, I think there's plenty of teachers that are willing to work hard, and would love to come to Pleasanton. If they don't meet the goals set for them, they can be let go, and replaced by teachers who can do the job unlike the untouchable teachers now. If the current issues surrounding the superintendent didn't happen, i don't think we'd be having this discussion.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on May 26, 2014 at 2:30 pm

You can whine about the quality of teachers in public schools. If you're so dissatisfied I strongly recommend that you place your children in a private school...where ever...ta-ta

tee hee...


Posted by Here's Jonny , a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on May 26, 2014 at 3:33 pm

Cholo it's not all of the teachers. Only a very small few. It's the union that's the issue.


Posted by Laverne, a resident of Castlewood
on May 26, 2014 at 5:42 pm

Voice your opinions regarding the calendar changes to the following:
Pleasanton's superintendent:
pahmadi@pleasantonusd.net
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
You can email the board members:
School board members:
jhintzke@pleasantonusd.net
jlaursen@pleasantonusd.net
ChrisMGrant@gmail.com
jeff.pusd@gmail.com
valerie@arkinhome.com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Calendar commission:
instcal@pleasantonusd.net
City council liaison between the city/school district:
cherylcookkallio@gmail.com
You can write a letter & mail it to the school district -4665 Bernal Avenue Pleasanton, CA 94566


Posted by Really???, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 27, 2014 at 8:25 am

Pamela, the district has been talking about this for months. Here is the e-mail I received from the district back in February inviting anyone and everyone to community input forums specifically to solicit feedback from the community about calendar changes:


Parent Presentations on Calendar Changes
Come learn about & give input on the potential changes to the Instructional Calendar!

Pleasanton Unified is exploring the idea of moving to a modified form of the traditional calendar for the 2015/2016 school year. The district calendar committee has developed a few options around this concept, varying from an "Early Start-Early Finish" to several versions of "modified" calendars that offer more or longer breaks than the traditional calendar.

In an effort to gain valuable feedback on the calendar, and provide information and answer questions related to the calendar, we have scheduled a number of times and places for staff and the community to share their views. Representatives from APT, CSEA, and management will attend and facilitate each meeting. Informational Flyer

March 13, 2014, 6-7:30 p.m.
Pleasanton Middle School, Multi-Purpose Room

March 17, 2014, 3:30-5 p.m.
Fairlands Elementary School, Multi-Purpose Room

March 20, 2014, 6-7:30 p.m.
Foothill High School, Room C-6


IMO, there has been plenty of notification and time to engage in this dialogue and provide input if you so choose.


Posted by Mrs Bob, a resident of Pleasanton Village
on May 27, 2014 at 8:34 am

Pamela. ...& others. There were meetings that went on discussing the new calender dates for all to see & discuss a few months ago. You even had a chance to email your view. I do believe one person has posted the links.
On another subject. ..Same with common core. There have been lots of meetings available to the public to discuss & explain about common core with an email address to view your concerns or appreciation. You just have to keep an eye on your schools website.


Posted by Yes, Pamela, a resident of Amador Estates
on May 27, 2014 at 9:05 am

Honestly, Pamela, your response shows you spend more time looking at Pleasanton Weekly than reading emails from your school/district.

I'm against the calendar, but do not feel as though this has been a surprise at all. The district has been communicating with us and I did go to a meeting.


Posted by William Tell, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 27, 2014 at 9:28 am

Okay, okay already! Sure, parents were notified, parents were asked for input, parents were listened to. But, hey, what about the nonparents like Kathleen and me whose job it is to criticize unions, teachers, supers, board, language, curriculum, lack of transparency, etc? Don't we deserve to be notified too? We pay taxes!


Posted by Anonymous, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 27, 2014 at 9:28 am

I agree with Pamela - how would anyone know about this if they weren't avid followers of Pleasanton Weekly or of the agendas of the Council? School schedules are pretty important, and I'm sure teachers and parents would like to know what's going on with them, prior to the schedules being put in place.

Same thing with the water reduction. I read about it here first, called my Property Manager, and she had no idea. She said they had to wait for a letter from the Water Department. And we STILL haven't heard anything from the apartment complex, even though I know, FROM HERE, that the letters went out a couple weeks ago.

So somehow, Pleasanton needs to be better about communicating with the community.


Posted by Really???, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 27, 2014 at 9:34 am

William Tell, you can sign up for PUSD E-connect so you, too, receive e-mails from the district. That way you can stay in the loop and criticize all you want. E-Connect is not limited to parents. In fact, not all parents get e-mails from the district . . . they have to sign up on E-Connect to get these communications. I'm sure the district would love it if all Pleasanton residents signed up for E-Connect so that they could communicate more effectively and directly with the general public, especially since it's not uncommon for PW stories about Pleasanton schools to be factually incorrect.


Posted by 2 links, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 27, 2014 at 11:48 am

The options:

Web Link

the web site;
Web Link


Posted by Cronny, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 27, 2014 at 8:52 pm

Comment deemed inappropriate by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff)


Posted by William Tell, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 27, 2014 at 9:47 pm

Comment deemed inappropriate by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff)


Posted by Yes really., a resident of Downtown
on May 27, 2014 at 9:49 pm

I did see the ONE notification on e-connection in February too, but I am surprised that was the only notification...considering how many thousands of families will be affected by the changes. It seems like a done deal. I believe Ahmadi will go forward with the changes, regardless of what parents & students want.


Posted by Jtjh, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on May 28, 2014 at 1:38 pm

Jtjh is a registered user.

Does PUSD make adequate provision to ensure that families without computers stay in the information loop?

I recall being at a PTA meeting some years ago, when a principal explained that certain information would henceforth be sent out online. When I asked about students without computers, his response indicated that he did not believe any of his students had no computer access at home. I was shocked. Yes, this is an affluent community, but that doesn't mean that every family has internet access. Furthermore, anyone who assumes that a student without internet access at home will openly admit to it, has little understanding of young people.


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