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PUSD's Measure M trails after Election Night

Original post made on Mar 4, 2020

Measure M, the $323 million school facilities bond measure proposed by the Pleasanton Unified School District to upgrade and build classrooms and other campus resources, showed to be trailing with 51.45% No and 48.55% Yes.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, March 4, 2020, 1:37 AM

Comments (25)

Posted by PUSDeepThroat
a resident of Amador Estates
on Mar 4, 2020 at 6:32 am

You did everything you could for Measure M?! How about not making voters regret supporting last bond measure. I voted no because of district incompetence. I do not trust them with the money.

Posted by Yes on M
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 4, 2020 at 8:14 am

Congratulations - while you've demonstrated your disdain for the Pleasanton District Office, you've given the middle finger to the teachers and students of Pleasanton. You probably don't see it that way. However, the teachers and students do.

Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Mar 4, 2020 at 8:32 am

The consultants wanted us to believe Measure M was a false choice of "now or never." That was the opening falsehood. Buried in the documents that were the legal descriptors for how this bond would be spent was one phrase that gave all the chips to the district, and nothing to homeowners--no guarantees anything on the project list would be done **even if there was the money to do so**.

That statement, if you need proof, is why we did not get a new elementary school, as promised with Measure I1, and we get an expansion at Donlon instead.

This was not a middle finger to anyone, and stating it was against students and teachers is just another one of the bullying tactics (is that part of the community of character?) used by the campaign.

What we need is a bond measure that states what will be done. I'd rather the list stated $3MM to fix the Amador gym (or rebuild it) and have it come in under budget and use the remainder on some other worthy project or cost overrun somewhere else.

What we need is a governance team that can set priorities that matter for those teachers and their students: not Chromebooks, not fencing, not Lydiksen; instead Amador's gym, roofing, and the new elementary.

What is need are people who respect voters.

Posted by Jake Waters
a resident of Birdland
on Mar 4, 2020 at 8:48 am

@Yes On M

Your comment (though many of you feel this way) demonstrates a despicable response to those of us that are trying to keep the government out of our pocketbook. You and others don’t fully understand the circumstances, but because it relates to children, schools, and teachers you play on the emotions of the voters. Thanks again to Kathleen and several others who are very knowledgeable about the inner workings of our system to guide us in the direction to better inform ourselves. Kathleen pushed me to dig more into these measures and I am grateful for that.

The best way to make government become more responsible (probably an oxymoron) is to push back, refuse their requests for more money, and demand accountability.

Posted by Grumpy
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Mar 4, 2020 at 9:06 am

Ignoring for the moment the merits of Measure M, it is extremely clear both locally and statewide that the politicians completely misunderstood the mood in this state—especially during a lightly attended primary election.

It’s political malpractice. I hope they’re happy.

Posted by DKHSK
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Mar 4, 2020 at 9:13 am

"It’s political malpractice."

And NOBODY will be held responsible.

There are no merits to Measure M. It should go down in flames and the politicians and bureaucrats that pushed it should be voted out and/or fired.


Posted by Grumpy
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Mar 4, 2020 at 9:26 am

That’s too strong. They had a duty to put the question before the voters. That’s what a democracy is for.

And the voters spoke, loudly.

I am just astonished that the measure drafters genuinely thought that sneaking it in a mostly Democratic primary would mean they’d win. This area is more than majority a Democrat, the state is very much majority Democrat, and so that means that many Democrats voted against M and Prop 13. Someone there needs to brush up on polling.

Posted by Kiko
a resident of Val Vista
on Mar 4, 2020 at 9:32 am

It doesn't matter, it was just an exercise because they will be back. Another bond measure written to address those things that they ignored in this measure or, once the State of CA abolishes the 2/3 majority on Prop. 13, another parcel tax.

What they should have done is figured out a way to get the vote to be a simple majority like the county did with Measure "C" to raise our sales taxes a half cent. Contra Costa County had a similar half cent measure but their's required a 2/3rd vote for passage. Go figure that one out.

If there was a "middle finger" on display here it was being given by PUSD to the people of Pleasanton with their inept and incompetent management of the district.

Posted by Take Notice Board
a resident of Vineyard Hills
on Mar 4, 2020 at 10:06 am

The failure of Measure M should fall of our superintendent and the board. Clearly, there is still a lack of trust and support for the leadership team and the governing board. The morale among teachers is down to the leadership style of our superintendent, yet the board cannot hold him accountable for the negative changes in the district. What has improved under his leadership? However, I voted "yes" because ultimately our teachers and students are teaching and learning in outdated and crowded facilities, and yet our students are entering a world that expects much of them. It is a shame that our teachers and teachers will continue to go without state of the art facilities because many of the no votes were against PUSD's current leadership and governing board. I feel fortunate that my child is almost out of PUSD, but those just starting in primary grades have a long way to go in these facilities.

Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Mar 4, 2020 at 10:32 am

TNB, There is more than half of the Measure I1 funds unbonded or unspent. Our teachers and students do not have to go without. The governance team needs to change its priorities. Short of the elementary school that was embedded in the ballot language, the rest of the projects are vague. And, as I've said, even the elementary school isn't a school.

Our teachers and students do not have to go without because M failed. The point to the governance team is what you have attempted will not go without being scrutinized. A bond can still pass in time if they do it right and stop listening to those who want to sell bonds and the consultants, and lawyers, architects, unions, and contractors who want to benefit, and threw big money at the Yes campaign.

Specifics need to be mandatory and held to (no escape clauses). It is possible. There is plenty of time before the money from I1 is spent. The important piece of the campaign ignored us, the community. We will support our teachers and children.

Posted by CriticalThinker
a resident of Birdland
on Mar 4, 2020 at 10:45 am

Measure M failed because it was badly written - simple as that. Instead of externalizing the problem, PUSD leaders should do some introspection and figure out the message that voters sent.
Measure M was too broad with no clear purpose and accountability - just give more money.
Also, voters got burned by the last Measure I1 - there is unspent money there, dislocated funds, etc.

I am all for funding out schools and would gladly pay for it, but I need to see a concrete plan how and when the money would be spent, not just a "give me more money". PUSD should try again with a better written measure - I may vote for it.

Posted by PUSD fraud
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 4, 2020 at 10:57 am

You can't trust anything the PUSD says or writes.
After all, after they failed to build Neal elementary as they promised right before the last bond measure, don't you think they would know M would be doomed to fail?

And now they want to build another phantom school (that will never be built) on the Staples Ranch park property. And sell the Neal property. Oh and sell the district office property too. All so that they can buy the new fake property, the Staples Ranch park property, to build another fake school they never intend to build.

So then they will sell the Staples Ranch park property to developers. So that they can find another fake empty property to buy.

Their deceit knows no bounds.

Posted by DKHSK
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Mar 4, 2020 at 11:10 am

The theme of this thread seems to be: "the measure didn't pass because it was poorly written".

Maybe the reason why it didn't pass was because the people don't want an increase in taxes? Period, full stop. Or maybe, because voters don't trust politicians to tax and spend wisely anymore (if they ever did)?

For me, it was both.

Glad to see prop 13 went down in flames too.

Local politicians -especially our school board - do not have YOUR best interests in mind, but they'll say "its for the kids" just to pacify you nonetheless.


Posted by Kiko
a resident of Val Vista
on Mar 4, 2020 at 11:12 am

The Alameda County voter turnout was less than 18% and, although a primary is usually low, that is pretty pathetic by any measure. Does anyone know the voter turnout for Pleasanton? I can't seem to find it.
So around 9% of Alameda County voted to raise our sales tax.

Posted by PUSD mom
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Mar 4, 2020 at 11:31 am

Dear Yes on M committee-

I really hope that you try and listen to the feedback on why people voted no on Measure M and change your tactics next time. Don’t just throw insults.

I have kids in PUSD, donate a lot of money and time to our schools and have a deep respect for our teachers and school staff, but I voted No on M. The amount of money I would have had to pay for M was a lot for us and I have no trust that you would spend it wisely. I am also one who disagrees with how our last bond money is being spent and I feel deceived. You would rather rebuild Lydiksen to the same capacity to make it look nice and do a hybrid model with Donlon. Yet you are not fixing a leaking roof. My kids rarely use their Chromebooks in school.

I would recommend that next time you want money, ask for a smaller amount of money, with specific items you will spend it on. Get that bond passed, spend it on what you promised and rebuild our trust. Then ask again for more later. Trust is much easier to lose than to gain back. You need to take baby steps to regain our trust.

Posted by DIsgusted
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 4, 2020 at 12:41 pm

[removed because it was disrespectful to another commenter]
While the communities around us are passing these bonds and cleaning up their schools PSUD will once again be sticking their fingers in the dyke and putting bandaids on broken bones. I am positive that the morale of those who work with your children will sink to a new low now. Let's see if there is another grand exodus like last time of great teachers to go and work in towns where they are appreciated.

Posted by Abigayle
a resident of Mohr Elementary School
on Mar 4, 2020 at 1:44 pm

aaIm wondering if the lighter primary voter turnout could be due to high population of temporary visa residents. Can someone tell me if temporary visa residents can vote in school measures or my thing else? I’m shocked at the low turnout for such an important election

Posted by No on M
a resident of Mariposa Ranch
on Mar 4, 2020 at 2:27 pm

Haglund makes $290k a year to do nothing but insist he be called Dr. Haglund and oversee a failing school system. Start with the inept PUSD Admin as to why voters didn't trust them to wisely spend money from yet another bond measure. Teachers were already protesting at board meetings and asking to be more appreciated by Hags and his staff. Apparently P-town voters don't appreciate PUSD leadership either, even with their kids in our schools. It ALL STARTS at the top...

Posted by DKHSK
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Mar 4, 2020 at 3:28 pm


"I am positive that the morale of those who work with your children will sink to a new low now."

Yep, I've been around the area long enough to read this same sentiment at least a few hundred times and you know what? TEST SCORES EITHER REMAIN THE SAME OR HAVE GONE UP.


Have you even looked at how our schools compare to others in the area? In Silicon Valley? In California?

Spare me your doomsday scenario. What matters most in this town are the families of our students.


Posted by Naveed Khan
a resident of Stoneridge Park
on Mar 4, 2020 at 3:48 pm

PUSD must not present similar to Measure M in November. It would fail as well. PUSD needs to establish a trust relationship with the residents. Why can't PUSD manage its budget?

Posted by Abigayle
a resident of Mohr Elementary School
on Mar 4, 2020 at 9:50 pm

What also matters is the seniors on fixed incomes and singles trying to pay off debt who are getting taxed out of this community. Parents should step up and either pay a user fee or at least be required to volunteer in the classroom or some school function. Our schools are still highly desirable and test scores are really good. For many teachers, the salary for 9-10 months of work is good last time I checked. I respect the teachers but the bond failure is no reflection on their work.

Posted by 20 years
a resident of Valley View Elementary School
on Mar 5, 2020 at 1:24 pm

Measure M did not fail because of the way it was written, as is mentioned above. It failed because the citizens of Pleasanton do not trust the school district to manage this new pool of funds. The superintendent position seems to turn over annually, none of the schools seem to be able to keep a principal for more than a year, onsite school administration does not communicate with nor support the students. The district is already "managing" a pool of funds from the last bond offering, yet parents are required to donate to the teachers so they can do their jobs. Once the district can prove that they can be trusted, a measure like this will pass.

Posted by Jtjh
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Mar 6, 2020 at 12:23 pm


To answer your question:

No, those in California on temporary visas cannot register to vote. Nor can permanent residents. It’s a privilege reserved for US citizens.
You can check the voter eligibility requirements for each State online. See, for example:

Web Link

Posted by Willy
a resident of Old Towne
on Mar 11, 2020 at 9:37 am

Bottom-Line NO MORE TAXES! The people of California are over taxed and regulated to the limit! As a business owner it is unbelievable the amount of taxes and regulations the company must face on a daily basis! If I were a younger man I would move my family and business out of California!

Posted by PaulN
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 13, 2020 at 10:05 am

In my position as a Site Technology Specialist with PUSD I am involved with the technologies purchased on a daily basis and although what I’ve seen has immense potential, the implementation and the necessary training are seriously lacking. Purchasing solutions is easy when you have a large coffer of money at your disposal….implementing and supporting those things in a manner that is both technically and pedagogically effective is an entirely different story. Pedagogical success requires that the technology staff understand the product and solutions they rollout and that training for teachers on how to use these technologies as instructional tools exist...the latter is fundamentally non-existent. More importantly, these must translate into better test scores and this in large part, should be the metric used to determine the efficacy and success of these projects and purchases.

These are issues with business processes, operational procedures, and the methodology behind which decisions are made, not with the specific technologies being purchased and after numerous discussions with various other staff, are not mine alone. The message here isn’t to not support the district and its technology roadmap. Rather it’s a call to action that those district leaders at every level be held to a higher level of accountability, transparency, and standards.

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