Harvest Park principal appointment leads school board meeting agenda tonight

Rubino explains change Monday night at meeting not disclosed to media, general public

The Pleasanton school board will be asked to appoint a new principal for Harvest Park Middle School when it convenes for its regular meeting Tuesday evening.

The board meeting follows two meetings last night at Harvest Park where school Supt. Rick Rubino discussed the change with those invited by an email message sent to parents of students there. The email was not sent to the media or the public at large.

The appointment is the leading item on the board's agenda for closed session, which begins at 5 p.m. Public comments on closed session items are heard before the board begins meeting privately. The board will report on any action taken afterward.

The anticipated discussion will come nearly a week after Harvest Park Principal Ethan Cheever announced his resignation, effective Friday. In an email to the school community Wednesday Cheever said he had accepted a new position closer to home, a decision he said he made because the demands of his job have been harder on his family than was anticipated.

Cheever started working as principal on July 1. Previously he served as the principal of Parkside Intermediate School in San Bruno.

Pleasanton Unified School District spokesman Patrick Gannon said last week that Cheever alone made the decision to leave and that the district did not know of any other reasons behind his departure. He did not know where Cheever was headed next and Cheever has not returned a request for comment.

The school district has indicated that Rubino will ask the board to appoint Robin Munsell as the new Harvest Park principal. Munsell has spent the last four years as the assistant principal of Gale Ranch Middle School in San Ramon. Prior to that she worked as an English teacher in Castro Valley for seven years.

Munsell was a top finalist among the interviewees for the Harvest Park vacancy in June, but ultimately Cheever was selected for the job according to the district. Gannon said that district officials considered appointing an interim principal or bringing in a retiree for a period of time but decided to go back to the group of top candidates from June.

The board is also scheduled to confer with the district's labor negotiator in closed session.

In open session, which is scheduled to get underway at 7 p.m., the board will hear and discuss a report on the district's planned adoption of new English-Language Arts and English language development textbooks.

Over $6 million has been set aside for these new instructional materials, as the district last adopted English-Language Arts textbooks in the late 1990s and early 2000s according to a board memo. The district plans to order these new materials in the spring for implementation next fall.

The school board will also consider signing off on a memorandum of understanding between Pleasanton Unified School District and the Santa Clara County Office of Education. The agreement would authorize the district to pay up to $48,000 this school year for activities related to training and implementation of the Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports approach.

The board will also be asked to approve a resolution in recognition of the Week of the Administrator, which is Oct. 8-15.

The meeting will take place in the district office boardroom, 4665 Bernal Ave.

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13 people like this
Posted by Jennifer
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Sep 27, 2016 at 10:13 am

I understand that Ms. Munsell is an invisible presence at Gale Ranch Middle School. Hardly the quality that is needed at Harvest Park these days. What is the Board thinking??

11 people like this
Posted by Absentee bureacrats
a resident of Ponderosa
on Sep 27, 2016 at 10:29 am

Actually, when the entire set of Pleasanton Unified bureacrats spends its times basking in the glory of selfies they post of themselves at retreats and various outings to Twitter like this educrat huddle in front of Yoda at what looks like Skywalker Ranch Web Link recently it is no wonder that they want to hire an equally absent admin.

If you look at the Twitter accounts of various PUSD administrators and former principals now basking in the glory of District Office paper pushing it is full of not only administrators away playing at retreats but teachers during the class day being taken out of the classroom for other various meetings during the school day.

It just looks like one giant party down at at PUSD complete with photo ops. Wonder how much the taxpayers pay for all of those trips to Skywalker Ranch and substitutes to ebabysit the neglected students while the teachers are in all day conferences?

15 people like this
Posted by Absentee bureacrats
a resident of Ponderosa
on Sep 27, 2016 at 10:39 am

Web Link

More nonsense in the Film Clip above.

Special Ed Director and Supt Rick Rubino boogie for the cameras while students struggle to learn, have to go to one of the 4 dozen tutoring centers in Pleasanton, and the media and community are kept in the dark about how the management of the District actually spends its time.

12 people like this
Posted by Absentee bureaucrats
a resident of Ponderosa
on Sep 27, 2016 at 12:25 pm

Web Link

I wonder throw many District staff hours and taxpayer dollars it took to photoshop Rick Rubino's photo on this Star Wars figure?

How many reading specialists to work 1:1 with kids could be hired rather than spend tax dollars on things like this?

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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