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School board to discuss enrollment projections, new elementary school

Original post made on Feb 14, 2017

The Pleasanton school board Tuesday night will take a look at the big picture for PUSD, as trustees are scheduled to discuss the fall 2016 demographer's report and next steps for finding a new elementary school site at its regular meeting.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, February 13, 2017, 5:25 PM

Comments (9)

Posted by Peetown lifer
a resident of Birdland
on Feb 14, 2017 at 10:39 am

Remember when the PUSD closed Pleasanton Middle School because there'd never be enough kids for 2 middle school, sent all the 6th graders to elementary schools, and made all the 7th and 8th graders go to Harvest Park? And a few years later, had to build two more middle schools? That was some good forecasting right there. (I was one of the 6th graders that had to stay at grade school, FWIW.)

Posted by Lin
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 14, 2017 at 11:00 am

When are you going to discuss why the superintendent was fired! As a tax payer who pays your salary we have a right to know. What is the big secret??? If was a good reason.

Posted by Sam
a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 14, 2017 at 12:03 pm

@Peetown Lifer: "I was one of the 6th graders that had to stay at grade school, FWIW."

I'm sure that there are worse things that could have happened to you. When I was a kid, elementary school was grades 1 thru 6. Don't know when they changed it to 1 thru 5.

Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Feb 14, 2017 at 3:53 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Sometime after 1987 when "Caught in the Middle" was published.

Posted by remember
a resident of Birdland
on Feb 14, 2017 at 4:10 pm

I also remember when the district was not going to build Hart Middle School. They said the demographers report showed we did not need that third middle school. Can you imagine what we would be looking at now if Hart was not build?

Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Feb 14, 2017 at 5:36 pm

Seems like the horse coming after the cart? Shouldn't this have been determined as part of all the housing approvals?

Posted by Patriot
a resident of Birdland
on Feb 14, 2017 at 6:29 pm

So confusing. I believe we need new schools! All I see is build new housing, recently 87 More! I see wooden pods still in use at Harvest Park? More housing says more kids. The city council is building on every square inch of Pleasanton ! Shouldn't they be interested in finding some land for schools and show an interest in education? Davis demographics projects decrease in elementary build an elementary school? Davis sees an increase in High School students so...dont build more high schools.! Who hired this consultant? Seems like to me, a layman, we need more schools and interest shown by city council. Kathleen, help us out.

Posted by Flightops
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 15, 2017 at 9:48 am

Flightops is a registered user.

It would be nice if the school board and administrators actually figure this out themselves and not hire consultants to take more money out of our pockets, or they could hire me to tell them that there is an explosion of baby strollers in town, not to mention all the new housing that keeps getting approved!! The storm is coming!

Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Feb 15, 2017 at 10:25 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

A few people showed up last night to ask questions and comment on historical numbers and available land. Of course, the board isn't allowed to respond to speakers during the meetings, so it is difficult to know what their takeaway was after the presentation. The most distressing part was when asked what would happen if all portables were removed from campuses what the impact would be, the answer was there would be no change. What?

First, the distinction staff makes is "leased portables" and "owned portables." The latter are also referred to as modulars and are described as permanent structures. But to be clear, these are portables that have been mounted on a slab and a facade placed on them to make them appear permanent. So there are 29 leased and 86 owned portables the last time this was reported to the board.

I'll take the leased ones first, 10 of which are at Amador. At Amador alone, removing those portables would mean about 300 students (30:1 class size) would have no classroom each period of the day. How can that fit with a response of no change? The remaining 19 portables are housing 475-570 students across the district. Where is the capacity for those students?

"No change" ignores the additional impact of 86 "owned portables," as they were referred to in a prior board report, including 9 at Alisal, 9 at Fairlands, 7 at Donlon, 11 at Valley View, 13 at Vintage Hills, and 16 at PMS. Using the same student:teacher ratios, this is an additional 1,625-1,950 students.

The demographer's report also shows how many students, particularly in the north section, who already are not in their home schools as explained on page 20 of the report. This is the link (Item 3) to where you can get the demographer's latest report and the PowerPoint presentation made last night: Web Link

We need to fully consider what it will take to restore our campuses to their intended sizes, allow for play space and single lunch periods, have students in their home schools, understand the impact of transfers in/out, and what we truly need for additional facilities. The answer may be we cannot provide all the campuses we want because the cost will be too high, but to reach a conclusion before we have done the research is a disservice to all students, but particularly those in portables or traveling to schools other than those in their neighborhood.

There are plans at the City that require rezoning that are not included in the demographer's calculations--Valley Trails is one already in the planning for approval and the other obvious one would be the move of City facilities and the use of that land on Main Street. It also doesn't include the East Pleasanton Specific Plan, which could be as many as 1,300 homes (? - I'm less sure about the number). Having attended City-District liaison meetings, the City clearly has growth on their minds and do not believe the district needs more schools.

I heard in a meeting yesterday how upset parents are and how difficult it will be to find a great superintendent. The board needs to hear from all of you, by email or a phone call or attending a meeting. And it is two fold, one to let them know your concerns and to empower them to ask the tough questions and to stand up to the City about school needs.

Knowing the demographer can only report as they are asked (and they are very thorough), the conclusion is that we are not growing . . . . BUT at some point a miracle occurs and 2,600 MORE students are expected at "maturation." It takes years to secure a sight, get plans, get state approval, and actually build a school. We should be planning for that miracle now.

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