Matt Rodriquez was selected by Gov. Jerry Brown to run the California Environmental Protection Agency, and his mom called the Review to point out that he’s a son of Hayward.
You might know his mom, too, from her years of service on the City Council.
“I just wanted to drum the fact that Hayward is a really nice town,” said Doris Rodriquez, who was on the council from 1991 to 2004, and also served as an appointed member from 2006 to 2008. She still can often be heard speaking at city meetings.
“It’s been a while since Matt went to Hayward schools, but he did,” she said. Matt went to Southgate, Calaroga (now MLK) and Mt. Eden.
”Chabot College, too,” she said. ”It was what I could afford, and he spent two years there before going to UC Berkeley and Hastings. It says something about Chabot.”
She said her other two children also started out at Chabot. One is now the head of the Hayward Education Association, and the other is also an attorney.
“It can make for sort of dull dinner conversation sometimes, but other than that it’s a good deal,” Rodriquez said.
UPDATE: Here’s the story that ran yesterday.
Also, a reader alerted me to blog coverage from 2009 regarding spending habits of HUSD’s new associate superintendent of educational services, from back when she was associate supt. at San Francisco Unified School District.
With Newark Unified’s hiring of a new permanent superintendent, HUSD Supt. Janis Duran will only be doing consulting for that district, and says Hayward will “keep me plenty busy.” She has agreed to stick around until a new supt. is found – the first round of candidates didn’t yield someone that board members could agree on, so the search continues. They did get the newly hired Associate Superintendent of Educational Services out of the process, though, and they’ll talk about her contract at a special Friday morning meeting, I’m planning to follow that with a story. Recommended compensation: $183,272. Find the meeting agenda and contract here.
Talked with board President Brunner this a.m., mainly about budget and grand jury report stuff, but we touched on the hire. She said it’s cost neutral, and is considered an important hire because they’re without a long-term superintendent for the time being, and this position will be focused on improving academics for all students. Will have more after Friday mtg.
UPDATE, story ran today.
Back from vacation, found this in my inbox. The Hayward Unified report begins on page 159. The Alameda County Grand Jury received numerous complaints about the district, at first because of the contentious behavior of board members and the process by which a new superintendent was selected. Bottom line: Grand Jury concluded that there wasn’t anything wrong with the supt. appointment and the board’s behavior has improved after new members came on board and training sessions were held, but expressed serious concerns about HUSD’s fiscal management. They made two recommendations:
Recommendation 11-53: The Hayward Unified School District Board of Education must implement the fiscal advice they are receiving in order to prevent relapse into financial insolvency.
Recommendation 11-54: The Hayward Unified School District Board of Education must prepare an array of budget scenarios and adopt a realistic balanced budget, including required financial reserves.
As reported by our Newark reporter, Janis Duran isn’t going back to retirement in New Mexico after all. She’s bouncing south a few districts to serve as the interim superintendent in Newark, a district that has recently lost a lot of top spots and is looking for stability, even if it’s on an interim basis.
For a refresher, find the text of the January story when she announced she was leaving HUSD after the jump. Continue Reading
Had a story on this program spearheaded by Lynn Bravewomon in yestesday’s paper and got a request to toss up a blog about it for discussion purposes.
Also got a call from Lea Lyon, who wrote a book in 2005 called “Say Something” that also encourages kids to take an active role in quashing bullying behavior at school. You can learn more about Lyon and her books on her website.
Here’s a little more on an anecdote mentioned in the story, from Bravewomon:
“With increasing frequency, as students learn how to speak up when bullying language is heard, they do so. There are stories of many students at many schools who are empowering one another to identify themselves as allies and speak up to their peers to stop bullying language. Student allies support the target by breaking the silence that so often occurs with the witnesses of bullying. One example occurred in an elementary classroom. Two girls overheard a passing and cruel comment muttered to this target by a child moving across the classroom. They both stood up and clearly stated, “We don’t tolerate bullying at our school, it hurts everyone who hears it, stop it now.” Students and teacher alike were surprised and impressed with this well-timed and effective display of ally behavior. Their teacher, who had been working with the Safe and Inclusive Schools Program and teaching the importance of being allies, praised the girls and continued teaching. The student who had been the target of bullying reports that after 2 or 3 weeks of support from a variety of allies in his class, the occurrence of bullying fell from multiple times daily to ‘maybe one time in a week, maybe less’. This student also reports he feels comfortable going to all parts of the recess yard and that people are friendlier.”
Hayward Unified is easily the most popular subject of discussion here at the HayWord. Anyone with a desire to stop talking about the district and start talking for it has just such an opportunity: a colleague of mine pointed out that Hayward Unified is looking to ramp up its public relations staff, what with the following job postings. This one is for the PIO/Community Outreach Officer. This one seems redundant, maybe it’s the same post, but it’s for a Public Information Liaison. Here is one for a Lead Publications Assistant.
Here’s the story on that part of last night’s meeting.
I will update this post with more information when I have a moment, but I have some other things to get done right now so I figured I’d at least get that out there.
Annette Walker, who lost to Trustee Jesus Armas in a close race last November, said at the time that she intended to work in other capacities to help Hayward schools, and tomorrow she’s being sworn in on the district’s Personnel Commission after being appointed to the post last month by State Superintendent of Schools Tom Torlakson.
“I promised to keep a finger on the pulse of what’s going on with schools,” Walker said. “I didn’t immediately jump at this opportunity, but thought about it and decided I had to do it. There’s no way I could walk away from an opportunity to do greater service to the schools in this tough economy.”
According to a district document, the Personnel Commission is “charged with maintaining a merit system for classified employees of the school system and for fostering the advancement of a career service for such employees.” They hear appeals and protests of personnel matters concerning the district’s non-teaching workforce.
Walker pointed out that this is a six-month appointment, as she is filling in for someone who couldn’t complete the term. She will then be up for a three-year appointment … or might pursue other things, which “absolutely” includes the possibility of another school board run.
“What excites me is that I ran for wiping the slate clean,” Walker said. ”And that possibility may come up again, in a run with two other candidates.”
Wait… that word, “slate.” It rings a bell. Wasn’t there a high-profile couple talking about forming a slate for a school board run before deciding not to run? And who did they strongly back in the race? Ok ok, I’m not here to speculate, just to report. But those are the facts.
Terms for trustees Armas, Luis Reynoso and Maribel Heredia are up for election in November 2012.
UPDATE 5/16: Here’s the story that ran today.
Faith Ringgold School of Arts and Science supporters were out in force last night, and for no small reason. The superintendent is recommending closing the school to save more than $700,000. That’s the single largest source of $1.5 million in cuts that Supt. Janis Duran said need to be made regardless of what news comes from the state next week. Duran’s not alone in her recommendation — 60 percent of the the Fiscal Integrity and Transparency Advisory Group recommend its closure, 27 percent voted “yes, but modify” the plan, no members voted against it and 13 percent were undecided.
Trustee Jesus Armas said the board “needs a philosophical concurrence” in making decisions such as this one, because without that, “it’s just numbers, dollars and cents.”
That’s what the board’s special meeting earlier this afternoon was aimed at, a discussion of goals and the like.
We’ll have a story on Faith Ringgold in the next couple of days. Board will decide at the May 25 meeting.
Also, item H.6, the one about forming a community interview panel for the superintendent search, passed. Details to be ironed out.
Here’s what’s going on this week, according to the Review calendar and government listings. On Saturday, there’s going to be a ribbon-cutting dedication of Suzanne Gayle’s latest mural work at Winton Middle School. Press release, calendar after the jump: Continue Reading