Posted by Leslie, a resident of the Foothill Knolls neighborhood, on May 1, 2012 at 8:23 am
I hope in evaluating Ms. Ahmadi the trustees keep in mind that she works for them and not vice versa. It seems that they might have forgotten this along the way. I would hope that Ms. Ahmadi is given feedback that the arrogant lack of transparency and accountability that continue to be perpetuated under her leadership are unacceptable. The district deserves better. Pleasanton deserves better.
Posted by sj, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on May 1, 2012 at 8:39 am
The board should look at some of the benefits the superintendent has, like car allowance, and remove them. And PLEASE, no raises for her. No matter what you think about her performance, with the budget situation, this is not the time to increase costs, they should be looking at her contract and how to save money. Top down. Start with her and then go after the management.
Posted by Jan Batcheller, a resident of the Downtown neighborhood, on May 1, 2012 at 9:10 am
Superintendent Ahmadi has done an outstanding job steering PUSD through a very difficult period, thanks to the State of California and its arcane school finance methods. She has kept the district harmonious and always has the best interests of the students as her top priority.
Posted by Kathleen Ruegseggerr, a resident of the Vintage Hills Elementary School neighborhood, on May 1, 2012 at 9:51 am
I think Ms. Ahmadi has done well under the circumstances. She has come into a district with strong personalities in her cabinet and within the community. The drawback is possibly not knowing how to sort through the bombardment to find the truth. I'm not even certain she has it yet.
As to the past, Bill James, while tough, had a team that unified the district, passed bonds to save the school sites, managed through a strike, worked to put negotiations on a positive path, and put money in the bank for the future. Mary Frances was smart enough not to upset what was handed to her. Hands down, no one was worse or did more damage than Ms. Ahmadi's immediate predecessor. He destroyed the district's finances when he knew very well the state was hitting its own difficulties, locked in three year contracts with upper management so Ms. Ahmadi couldn't make changes had she wished to do so, and padded his wallet as he ran off into retirement.
Posted by xyz, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on May 1, 2012 at 11:17 am
" He destroyed the district's finances when he knew very well the state was hitting its own difficulties, locked in three year contracts with upper management so Ms. Ahmadi couldn't make changes had she wished to do so, and padded his wallet as he ran off into retirement."
Well he's gone and there isn't much we can do about he who must not be named. Seems like everyone is taking out their frustration on his replacement.
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of the Vintage Hills Elementary School neighborhood, on May 1, 2012 at 11:50 am
xyz, Ms. Ahmadi was handed a lump of coal and expected to polish it back into a diamond. She has been gracious and responsive and deserves the time to make any needed changes, which I think revolve more around the business side, not necessarily the education side.
Posted by I'd give her an F-, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on May 1, 2012 at 12:11 pm
How much time does she need to 'make changes?' My gosh, she has had almost 2 years here and has made absolutely NO changes. She has a so-called 'innovative' education plan that parrots NCLB Federally mandated requirements (wow, equal test scores regardless of ethnic background, what a new concept :-)) and her public outreach seems to consist solely of attending Rotary and Chamber functions.
The Board is the one that extended contracts for upper management and the superintendent. They need to find a new superintendent or the public will find a new Board.
Posted by Sandy Piderit, a resident of the Mohr Park neighborhood, on May 1, 2012 at 4:09 pm
The board as a whole selects the superintendent and conducts her performance appraisals. If someone is dissatisfied with some aspect of her work, then their feedback is most useful if directly conveyed to the board members, rather than via an anonymous forum. As has been evident over the last two years, board members have different perspectives, based in part on which members of the community contact them. Here are their names, numbers, and emails:
Superintendent Ahmadi brought her experience as an assistant superintendent in a district three times the size of ours to Pleasanton. She has not made changes in cabinet, but she has selected new principals for Amador, Harvest Park, and Walnut Grove two years ago. Last summer Amy Simione moved from Alisal to Donlon, and Terri Quisenberry came to Alisal. Is the Valley View principal also new? Six new recruits in 15 schools are making a difference in students' experiences.
The board and superintendent are making tough choices about where to make budget cuts. Over the next 3-5 years the district will tackle new challenges, and many of us are paying attention to how those challenges will be addressed --- which is good news.
Continuing to build partnerships with the community will be a gradual process. I hope that those who have not yet connected with Superintendent Ahmadi will invite her to their events.
Posted by fact checker, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on May 3, 2012 at 9:15 pm
There were three superintendents since the one who was fired. He wasn't there long enough to do the kind of damage you are referencing. Doug Gephart and Milt Werner were there with Ahmadi. The current superintendent is Jim Morris.