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Archive for September, 2012

Mt. Diablo school board candidate Ernie DeTrinidad drops out of race

I have received the following statement from Mt. Diablo school board candidate Ernie DeTrinidad, announcing his decision to withdraw from the race. Please note that he will still be listed on the ballot.

“As residents of the Mt. Diablo school community continue to face really tough challenges, the need to change the makeup of the School Board is without doubt the most important and vital. It is critical for residents to elect new members, members with new ideas, solutions and, most important, new approaches. We must build a more positive, productive, collaborative, and inclusive environment for our students, teachers and district staff, to achieve their very best – because successful students are essential for a healthy and prosperous community.

It is my belief that two candidates offer the Board exactly what is necessary, a genuine passion for positive change. Barbara Oaks and Debra Mason bring educational, community and organizational experience to the table. They are independent, yet can collaborate on creative solutions for the benefit of our students and our community.

We don’t need someone who will use the Board as a stepping-stone in his political pursuits, and falsely labels himself as an educator. We don’t need someone who has had ample opportunity as a current Board member, and yet has failed to lift our School District out of low performance results, instead filling the Board with negativity and distancing the Board from the very communities it serves, alienating District employees and staff.

In order to bolster our opportunity to achieve positive change, I have decided to withdraw from candidacy for School Board. This is a most difficult decision, but one I make in the best interest of our students. Instead I stand ready and ask that our community join me in support of the two best candidates for MDUSD School Board; Barbara Oaks and Debra Mason.

Ernie DeTrinidad
Parent/Candidate for MDUSD School Board”

Do you agree with DeTrinidad’s decision to drop out of the race?

OCT. 15 UPDATE: Here is the link to the CCTV MDUSD candidate forum:

Posted on Tuesday, September 25th, 2012
Under: Education, Election, Mt. Diablo school district | 145 Comments »

CCTV to air school board election forums

Last week, political reporter Lisa Vorderbrueggen moderated several candidate forums taped for broadcast on CCTV.

Here is a list of the school board forums and air dates and times, provided by Vorderbrueggen:

“Antioch Unified School District — Channel 24: 8 p.m. on Oct. 5, 7, 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28, Nov. 2 and 4.

Brentwood Union School District — Channel 24: 7 p.m. on Oct. 5, 7, 12, 14, 19, 26, 28, Nov. 2 and 4.

Lafayette School District — Channel 26: 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 5, 7, 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28, Nov. 2 and 4.

Martinez Unified School District — Channel 28 in Martinez, Pleasant Hill and Clayton: 12:30 p.m. on Sept. 30, Oct. 7, 14, 21, 28, Nov. 4 and 10 p.m. on Oct. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 and Nov. 5.

Mt. Diablo Unified School District — Channel 27: 9:30 p.m. on Oct. 4, 7 p.m. on Oct. 7, 9:30 p.m. on Oct. 14, 7 p.m. on Oct. 21, 9:30 p.m. on Oct. 28, 7 p.m. on Oct. 30 and 7 p.m. on Nov. 4. Channel 28 in Walnut Creek: 1 p.m. on Oct. 7, 14, 21, 28 and Nov. 4. Channel 28 in Concord: 3 p.m. on Sept. 29, Oct. 6, 13, 20, 26, 27, 28, Nov. 2, 3, 4 and 5.

Orinda School District — Channel 26: 9 p.m. on Oct. 4, 11, 18, 25, Nov. 1 and 6:30 p.m. on Oct. 7, 14, 21, 28 and Nov. 4.

Pittsburg Unified School District — Channel 24: 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 5, 7, 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28, Nov. 2 and 4.

San Ramon Valley Unified School District — Channel 27: 9 p.m. on Oct. 4, 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 7, 9 p.m. on Oct. 14, 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 21, 9 p.m. on Oct. 28, 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 30 and 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 4.

West Contra Costa Unified School District — Channel 28: 8 p.m. on Oct. 3, 1 p.m. on Oct. 5, 10 p.m. on Oct. 9, 9 p.m. on Oct. 13, 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Oct. 14, 12 p.m. on Oct. 16, 10 a.m. on Oct. 22, 1 p.m. on Oct. 26, 9 p.m. on Oct. 29, 8:30 p.m. on Nov. 2, 10 p.m. on Nov. 3, 1 p.m. on Nov. 5, 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Nov. 6.

Station notes
— Contra Costa Television (CCTV) airs countywide on Comcast Channel 27. It also airs on AT&T U-Verse Channel 99 and Astound Channel 32 in Concord and parts of Pleasant Hill and Walnut Creek.

— Channel 26 airs on Comcast in Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill, Martinez, Lafayette, Moraga, Orinda, Alamo and Danville.

— Channel 24 airs on Comcast in East Contra Costa County.

— Residents in the following communities can watch their local forums on Comcast Channel 28: Richmond, Walnut Creek, Concord and a combined Martinez, Pleasant Hill and Clayton.”

Also, the forums will be archived at in the near future.

CCTV forums for the Moraga, Liberty and Oakley school district were canceled because most of the candidates were unable to attend. Forums for some smaller districts were not conducted, due to limited air time available.

Do these forums help you decide whom to support?

Posted on Tuesday, September 25th, 2012
Under: Education, Election | No Comments »

MDUSD is accepting input on draft strategic plan tonight

Last Wednesday, Mt. Diablo district Superintendent Steven Lawrence issued an automated phone call to parents inviting them to “drop-in” to the front area of the district office tonight from 6-7:30 p.m. to give input into the draft strategic plan:

Surprisingly, though, the district never issued any written announcement about this. I spoke to Board President Sherry Whitmarsh and she said people can place dots on large pieces of paper next to the goals they think are most important, but there will not be a public meeting about the plan tonight.

In fact, the regular board meeting will be going on starting at 6:30 p.m., while the public continues placing dots on the draft plan in the lobby area.

The board expects to finalize the plan in October.

Here is the draft plan:

What do you think the board’s top priorities should be?

Posted on Monday, September 24th, 2012
Under: Education, Mt. Diablo school district, Uncategorized | 47 Comments »

School board elections are heating up in Contra Costa County

Election time means one thing for Contra Costa Times reporters: lots of candidate forums to let the public know about.

For candidates in Mt. Diablo, West Contra Costa and other school districts, the CCTV forum moderated by political reporter Lisa Vorderbrueggen is the kickoff for election season.

I sat in on the MDUSD and WCCUSD forums Thursday, where candidates sounded off on a variety of issues.

In the Mt. Diablo race, incumbent Sherry Whitmarsh faced challengers Brian Lawrence, Debra Mason and Barbara Oaks in a discussion that touched on Propositions 30 and 38, valuing district staff, resolving friction on the board, reigning in health and pension costs, and strategic planning. Candidate Ernie DeTrinidad was unable to attend the taped forum and incumbent Gary Eberhart is not seeking re-election in the race for two open seats.

In back-to-back tapings, all four West Contra Costa board candidates were on the hot seats next. They included incumbent Antonio Medrano and challengers Robert Studdiford, Randy Enos and Todd Groves, who traded opinions about Propositions 30 and 38, discontent in Hercules and Pinole, the district’s November parcel tax and bond measure, and pension and health care reform. Incumbent Tony Thurmond is not seeking re-election in this race for two seats.

You can catch the Mt. Diablo forum on CCTV Channel 27 at 9:30 p.m. Oct. 4, 7 p.m. Oct. 7, 9:30 p.m. Oct. 14, 7 p.m. Oct. 21, 9:30 p.m. Oct. 28, 7 p.m. Oct. 30 and 7 p.m. Nov. 4.

The West Contra Costa forum will air on KRCT Channel 28 at 8 p.m. Oct. 3, 1 p.m. Oct. 5, 10 p.m. Oct. 9, 9 p.m. Oct. 13, 10 a.m. And 6 p.m. Oct. 14, noon Oct. 16, 10 a.m. Oct. 22, 1 p.m. Oct. 26, 9 p.m. Oct. 29, 8:30 p.m. Nov. 2, 10 p.m. Nov. 3, 1 p.m. Nov. 5, and 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. Nov. 6.

In addition, both forums — along with forums for most other school boards and city councils in the county — will be archived at

Both the Mt. Diablo and West Contra Costa candidates are also slated to participate in the following forums:

Mt. Diablo:

— The district’s special education Community Advisory Committee will host a Candidates’ Question and Answer Panel from 6-7 p.m. Oct. 2 in the district office at 1936 Carlotta Drive in Concord.

The candidates will be asked questions that are important to special education selected in advance, but the candidates will hear them for the first time that evening. Each candidate will be asked the same question and will have 90 seconds to respond. It is open to the public and will be followed by the committee meeting at 7 p.m.

— The Pleasant Hill Education Commission will host a forum from 7-9 p.m. Oct. 18 in the Pleasant Hill City Council chamber at 100 Gregory Lane in Pleasant Hill. Email to submit a question. The forum will be broadcast after the event on Comcast Channel 28, ATT U-Verse Channel 99 and Astound Channel 29.

West Contra Costa:

— The PTAs of Kensington, Hilltop, Madera, Harding, Portola and Mira Vista elementary schools are hosting a forum from 6:30-8 p.m. Monday in the Harding Elementary Auditorium at 7230 Fairmount Avenue in El Cerrito. Candidates for school board will answer questions from the public. To submit questions, email

The League of Women Voters will sponsor two additional school board candidate forums:

— From 6:30-8 p.m. Oct. 11 in the El Cerrito High School cafeteria at 540 Ashbury Avenue in El Cerrito; and
– from 6:30-8 p.m. Oct. 16 in the Murphy Elementary School multipurpose room at 4350 Valley View Road in Richmond.

The League of Women Voters, West Contra Costa Chapter will moderate and keep time for these forums. More information is available by contacting the League of Women Voters, West Contra Costa Chapter at 510-525-4962.

What questions would you like the candidates to answer?

Posted on Saturday, September 22nd, 2012
Under: Education, Mt. Diablo school district, West Contra Costa school district | 9 Comments »

B-Girl gets YVHS dance crew ready for rally

YVHS students get dance tips from B-Girl Bonita Lovett of the Beat Freaks

Ygnacio Valley High Dance Director Kelly Cooper wants to share the news that her Advanced Production Dance III students had a very special master hip hop class last week, led by B-Girl Bonita Lovett — who is a member of the Beat Freaks, as seen on Amercia’s Best Dance Crew.

Lovett also performs with the Groovaloos and the Rock Steady Crew, Cooper said in a Sept. 10 email.

“She is a wonderful and talented professional in the industry,” Cooper wrote, “and the Warriors were excited to have her in to teach a routine they will be performing at our welcome back rally on Friday.”

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to attend the rally, because I was on vacation last Friday.

I urged Cooper to let us know ahead of time if another master class like this happens in the future, so we can send our own photographer to catch the action — and possibly even videotape some of the students’ dance moves!

Based on the @YgnacioValley tweets after the rally, it looks like the whole event was a great success! 🙂

The Northgate Jazz Band class also invites master musicians in to teach clinics to students.

Does you school offer master classes?

Posted on Monday, September 17th, 2012
Under: Education, Mt. Diablo school district | No Comments »

Congrats to Contra Costa County 2013 National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists!

More than 100 Contra Costa County students were named as semifinalists in the presigious 2013 National Merit Scholarship Program today, among approximately 16,000 nationwide. Congratulations!

The program recognizes “academically talented high school seniors” who have the opportunity to compete for about 8,300 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $32 million to be offered next spring, according to a news release.

Semifinalists and their high schools must submit a scholarship application providing details about the students’ academic record to become finalists, along with participation in campus and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, and awards and honors received. In addition, they must have outstanding academic records throughout high school, be recommended and endorsed by a high school official, write an essay, and earn SAT scores confirming the students’ earlier performance on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT).

About 90 percent are expected to become finalists, with more than half winning a National Merit Scholarship and earning the Merit Scholar® title. Winners will be announced beginning in April.

Below is a list of semifinalists from Contra Costa County, listed alphabetically by the cities in which their schools are located.

However, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation offers this caution: “Using numbers of Semifinalists to compare high schools, educational systems, or states will result in erroneous conclusions. The National Merit® Scholarship Program honors individual students who show exceptional academic ability and potential for success in rigorous college studies. The program does not measure the quality or effectiveness of education within a school, system, or state. For more information about the competition, please visit NMSC’s website at”

Jankowski, John J.
Pericich Jr., John I.

Arrighi, Tess C.
Han, Sae Ah

Choi, Kelvin J.
Cook, Connor S.
Herman, Joshua
Hsi, Erin
Jang, Bo Yoon
Kennedy, Karen L.
Kim, Jisu
Ma, Nathan
Mason, James D.
Nayeri, Mina
Oh, Myung Jin
Peng, Nicholas S.
Roy, Bidisha K.
Shear, Benjamin P.
Sorayya, Aryo
Su, Ziyue
Wong, Kevin G.

Dias, Alicia J.

Xi, Kelly

Grossman, Elliot A.
Pardo, Sarah K.
Usinger, Brett W.

Lupan, Bianca M.
Narayan, Vivek
Nash, Jeffrey M.

Chan, Kyle
Cheng, Julia C.
Chiang, Eric S.
Freeman, Matthew
Gledhill, Arianna M.
Ho, Eric A.
Jin, Suying
Kang, Yiming
Li, Natalie S.
Liu, Sydney
Peng, Kevin Y.
Sun, Cameron H.
Vittimberga, Brooke
Wright, Roman Q

Bittner, Kelsey C.
Chiu, Josh
Choi, Nicholas
Hass, Julia A.
Levine, Reese G.
Li, Jessica B.
Lim, Matthew J.
Martin, Kelly
Pang, Clark C.
Ting, Julia
Woodin, Wendy H.

Cheng, Hsiang
Gath, Kenneth J.
Gole, Shalaka
Kim, Seohyun
Kumar, Ashwin
Li, Lucy Z.
Patel, Anand M.
Zhang, Jiemeng

Cai, Trevor Y.
Chan, Vincent
Chen, Andrew
Chen, Patrick
Dutta, Avishek
Han, Seunghwa M.
Jois, Nikhil K.
Kalyan, Srivathsan
Lin, Louis S.
Liu, Patrick
Ma, Mary Y.
Man, Colin
Muttineni, Vihari
Nelson, Andrew C.
Nibber, Vikrum S.
Pan, Grace A.
Park, Michael
Patel, Sachin
Peng, Jiachun
Pok, Daniel G.
Roesslein, Riley D.
Son, Lorren
Su, Brian Y.
Ting, Nelson
Tong, Benjamin
Unwalla, Daanish
Wang, Andrew L.
Wang, Elaina J.
Wang, Eric
Wang, Xuanyi
Wen, Lily
Zhang, Grace Y.
Zhao, Andrew A.
Zhao, Michelle L.
Zou, Roger G.

Broadbent, Aaron J.

Hwang, Yeonjoo
Katrak, Christopher C.
Prasad, Karthik
Shing, Brian J.

Do you believe students in Contra Costa County are well-prepared to take the PSAT/NMSQT?

Here is the entire statewide list:

Posted on Wednesday, September 12th, 2012
Under: Education | 15 Comments »

MDUSD 9-10-12

Strategic Planning input session got underway a bit late.
Board President Sherry Whitmarsh invited public and staff to vote to prioritize items on the draft strategic plan using red dots.
Participants include board candidate Debra Mason, John Parker, a member of the Pleasant Hill Education Commission, a parent, Felicia Stuckey-Smith, Carolyn Patton and Jonathan Roselin.
Whitmarsh said the CAC will have the opportunity to place dots on the draft at its Oct. 2 meeting.
Each person gets 15 dots to place three under each of the five areas of the strategic plan.

Regular meeting has begun

Board unanimously adopted consent agenda

Posted on Monday, September 10th, 2012
Under: Education, Mt. Diablo school district | 148 Comments »

STAR scores show improvement in Contra Costa County

California’s recently released Standardized Reporting and Testing, or STAR, results for students in grades 2-11 showed most districts in Contra Costa County made gains in English language arts and math from 2011 to 2012. The state’s goal is for each student to score proficient or better.

Here’s how the districts stacked up against each other, with comparisons of English scores from 2011-12 followed by comparisons of math scores:

Percentage of Contra Costa district students scoring proficient or better:

2011 English, 2012 English,(Change), 2011 Math, 2012 Math,(Change)
Acalanes HS: 84.8, 87.2,(+2.4), 56.1, 57.5, (+1.4)
Antioch Unified: 47.1, 49.2,(+2.1), 38.3, 40.4, (+2.1)
Brentwood: 65.8, 69.1, (+3.3), 68.3, 68.4,(+0.1)
Byron: 62.1, 64.4, (+2.3), 64.4, 65.5, (+1.1)
Canyon: 79.6, 78.8, (-0.8), 70.4, 71.7, (+1.3)
John Swett Unified: 46.4, 50.3, (+3.9), 42.1, 43., (+0.9)
Knightsen: 64.4, 61.7, (-2.7), 68.4, 67.9, (-0.5)
Lafayette: 85.3, 87.6, (+2.3), 85.4, 88.0,(+2.6)
Liberty HS: 52.9, 60.4, (+7.5), 26.0, 29.5,(+3.5)
Martinez Unifed: 66.8, 69.0, (+2.2), 62.3, 65.6, (+3.2)
Moraga: 91.8, 93.3, +1.5, 90.6, 90.6, same
Mt. Diablo Unified: 56.8, 59.4, (+2.6), 52.1, 53.1, (+2.0)
Oakley: 55.9, 61.0, (+5.1), 52.9, 57.3, (+4.4)
Orinda: 91.6, 93.1, (+1.5), 91.2, 92.1, (+0.9)
Pittsburg Unified: 41.0, 44.3, (+3.3), 41.9, 43.5, (+1.6)
San Ramon Unified: 84.7, 86.1, (+1.4), 78.5, 79.4, (+0.9)
Walnut Creek: 81.0, 83.4, (+2.4), 79.9, 82.7,(+2.8)
West Contra Costa Unified: 42.0, 44.2, (+2.2), 37.8, 38.1, (+0.3)
CONTRA COSTA COUNTY: 60.6, 63.3, (+2.7), 55.1, 56.5, +1.4)
CALIFORNIA: 54.4, 57.2, (+2.8), 50.4, 51.5, (+1.1)

High schools in unified districts tended to score worse on math than elementary and middle schools in those districts, according to this 2012 comparison provided to the Times by the Liberty high school district, which said its scores were comparable to other high schools:

Acalanes HS ELA: 88.2; math 59.3
Campolindo HS ELA 89.1; math 57.7
Las Lomas HS ELA 81.3; math 48.7
Miramonte HS 93.5; math 67.2

Antioch HS ELA 40.4; math 10.8
Deer Valley HS ELA 53.2; math 18.9
Dozier-Libby HS ELA 70.5; math 16.4

Freedom HS ELA 56.6; math 29.4
Heritage HS ELA 73.4; math 34,0
Liberty HS ELA 60.0; math 25.8

Alhambra HS ELA 69.1; math 55.8

Clayton Valley HS ELA 58.0; math 26.4
College Park HS ELA 67.9; math 37.1
Concord HS ELA 51.5; math 22.9
Mt. Diablo HS ELA 33.2; math 10.8
Northgate HS ELA 78.3; math 46.6
Ygnacio Valley HS ELA 32.9; math 15.0

Pittsburg HS ELA 35.1; math 18.2

California HS ELA 80.4; math 65.0
Dougherty Valley HS ELA 88.7; math 74.5
Monte Vista HS ELA 85.7; math 60.1
San Ramon HS ELA 79.0; math 56.4

De Anza HS ELA 37.2; math 11.8
El Cerrito HS ELA 42.4; math 15.8
Hercules HS ELA 50.0; math 14.8
Kennedy HS ELA 16.3; math 3.1
Middle College HS 81.3; math 32.6
Pinole Valley HS ELA 36.5; math 9.5
Richmond HS ELA 20.5; math 2.5

How do you think high schools could improve math instruction?

Posted on Saturday, September 8th, 2012
Under: Contra Costa County, Education | 37 Comments »

MDUSD on Monday to receive public input on strategic plan priorities, hear solar report and discuss November ballot initiatives

For blog readers who are interested in commenting on Monday’s board meeting, I have posted the agenda below. Highlights include an early meeting to allow the public to prioritize the strategic plan, a special report on the district’s solar projects and the possible endorsement of Prop. 30 (Gov. Brown’s initiative, which is backed by teachers’ unions) or Prop. 38 (Molly Munger’s initiative, which is backed by the state PTA, including Trustee Linda Mayo):

“1.0 Call to Order
1.1 President will call the meeting to order. Info
1.2 Board Member Lynne Dennler will participate via teleconference from 27 Hui Drive, Lahaina, HI Info
2.0 Announcements
2.1 In closed session, the Board will consider the items listed on the closed session agenda. Info
3.0 Public Comment
3.1 The public may address the Board concerning items that are scheduled for discussion during closed session only. These presentations are limited to three minutes each, or a total of thirty minutes for all speakers or the three minute limit may be shortened. Speakers are not allowed to yield their time. Info
4.0 Adjourn to Closed Session at 6:00 p.m.
4.1 Negotiations – The Board may discuss negotiations or provide direction to its representatives regarding represented employees, pursuant to EERA (Govt. Code Section 3549.1) Agency negotiators: Julie Braun Martin and Deborah Cooksey. Agencies: MDEA, CSEA, Local One M&O, Local One CST, MDSPA, and Supervisory. Action
4.2 Anticipated Litigation Info
4.3 Public Employee Discipline/Dismissal/Release/Complaint Info

5.0 Community Meeting
5.1 Open Community Meeting at 6:30 p.m. Info
5.2 Public Priortization on Strategic Plan Info
5.3 Adjourn Community Input Meeting at 7:00 p.m. Info

6.0 Reconvene Open Session
6.1 Reconvene Open Session at 7:00 p.m. Info
7.0 Preliminary Business
7.1 Pledge of Allegiance and Roll Call Info
8.0 Report Out Action Taken in Closed Session
8.1 Report of Closed Session September 10, 2012 Info
8.2 Negotiations Info
8.3 Anticipated litigation Info
8.4 Public Employee Discipline/Dismissal/Release/Complaint Info

9.0 Consent Agenda
9.1 (Item #1) Items listed under Consent Agenda are considered routine and will be approved/adopted by a single motion. There will be no separate discussion of these items; however, any item may be removed from the consent agenda upon the request of any member of the Board and acted upon separately. Action
9.2 (Item #2) Minutes of the meeting of August 20, 2012 Action
9.3 Item #3) Recommended Action for Certificated Personnel Action
9.4 (Item #4) Request to increase Full Time Equivalent (FTE) for the 2012-2013 school year. Action
9.5 (Item #5) Saint Mary’s College of California Student Placement Agreement with Mt. Diablo Unified School District Action
9.6 (Item #6) California State University, Chico Internship Agreement with Mt. Diablo Unified School District Action
9.7 (Item #7) Samuel Merritt University Student Teaching Agreement with Mt. Diablo Unified School District Action
9.8 (Item #8) Approval of Provisional Intership Permit (PIP) Request Action
9.9 (Item #9) Recommended Action for Classified Personnel Action
9.10 (Item #10) Classified Personnel: Create an Instructional Assistant-Computer Position for Mountain View Elementary School Action
9.11 (Item #11) Award of Inspector of Record (Project Inspector) Contract Action
9.12 (Item #12) Clayton Valley Charter High School: Measure C High School Project List Action
9.13 (Item #13) Final Change Order: Fix Painting Company: Exterior Painting of Ygnacio Valley High School Action
9.14 (Item #14) Notice of Completion for Bid #1607/C-911 Action
9.15 (Item #15) Contract Amendment: PHd Architects: Modification of Auto/Metal Shop at Northgate High School-‘Project Lead the Way’ Engineering Pathway Action
9.16 (Item #16) Contract Amendment: PHd Architects: Design Modifications Required to facilitate Use of District Pre-Checked (PC) Design as a Kindergarten Classroom. Action
9.17 (Item #17) Approve Independent Service Contract with Dr. Adria Klein for Staff Development in Literacy at Meadow Homes Elementary School Action
9.18 (Item #18) Award of Design Services Contract For Stadium Improvement Project at College Park High School Action
9.19 (Item #19) Award of Inspector of Record (Project Inspector) Contract for Interim Housing Installation at Mt. Diablo High School Action
9.20 (Item #20) Award of Inspector of Record (Project Inspector) Contract Action
9.21 (Item #21) Funding Source Correction: Award of Lease/Leaseback Agreement for Construction of New Chemistry Buildings Action
9.22 (Item #22) Approve contract/purchase order with Beyond the Words, Inc. for the services of Educational Interpreters for the Deaf for school year 2012-2013 Action
9.23 (Item #23) Approve contract increase to independent service contract with Kristin Obrinsky, Physical Therapist Action
9.24 (Item #24) Approval of master contract between Mt. Diablo Unified School District (MDUSD) and Progressus Therapy Services to provide District-Wide Occupational/Physical Therapy Services for the 2012-2013 school year and 2012-2013 Extended School Year Program. Action
9.25 (Item #25) Increase Contract between Mt. Diablo School District (MSUSD) and Maxim Services, Non Public Agency (NPA) for the 2012-2013 school year Action
9.26 (Item #26) Increase purchase order between Mt. Diablo Unified School District (MDUSD) and Speech Pathology Group for Speech and Language services for the 2012-2013 School Year Action
9.27 (Item #27) Contract with Center for Human Development (CHD) Action
9.28 (Item #28) Approval of Independent Service Contract with Dr. Cynthia Peterson Action

10.0 Consent Items Pulled for Discussion

11.0 Public Comment

11.1 The public may address the Board regarding any item within the jurisdiction of the Board of Education of the Mt. Diablo Unified School District that is not on this agenda. These presentation are limited to three minutes each, or a total of thirty minutes for all speakers, or the three minute limit may be shortened. If there are multiple speakers on any one subject, the public comment period may be moved to the end of the meeting. Speakers are not allowed to yield their time. Info

12.0 Communications
12.1 District Organizations – At regular Board meetings, a single spokesperson of each recognized district organization may make a brief presentation following the Consent Agenda. Items are limited to those which are informational. Info

13.0 Reports/Information
13.1 Solar Project Progress Report – Bill Kelly Info

14.0 Superintendent’s Report
14.1 Superintendent’s Report Info

15.0 Business/Action Items
15.1 Appointment of Administrator, Necessary Small High School/Vice Principal Action
15.2 Appointment of Coordinator, Student/Community Services 9-12 Action
15.3 Appointment of Coordinator, Student/Community Services 9-12 Action
15.4 Appointment of Coordinator, Student Services 6-8 Action
15.5 Appointment of Program Specialist/Special Education Action
15.6 Certification of the District’s 2011-2012 Unaudited Actual Financial Report Action
15.7 Resolution # 12/13-05 Adopting the District’s 2011-2012 GANN Appropriations Limit Action
15.8 Approve 2012-2013 Interagency Agreement #74-371-3 between MDUSD and Contra Costa County Services, Mental Health Division Action
15.9 Approve Interagency agreement between Mt. Diablo Unified School District (MDUSD) and Contra Costa Health Services, Mental Health Division Action
15.10 Board Resolution in Support of Proposition 30 Action
15.11 Board Resolution in Support of Proposition 38 Action
15.12 2012-13 Mandate Block Grant Letter of Intent Action
15.13 Board Action Progress Report Info
15.14 Amendment to BP 2140(a) Evaluation of the Superintendent Info
15.15 Meeting Extension Action
16.0 Board Member Reports
16.1 Board reports – two minute time limit Info

17.0 Closed Session
17.1 Items not completed during the first Closed Session will be carried over to this closed session. Action
18.0 Adjournment
18.1 Adjourn Meeting Info”

What do you think is the most interesting item on Monday’s agenda?

Posted on Thursday, September 6th, 2012
Under: Education, Mt. Diablo school district | 101 Comments »

MDUSD special ed Community Advisory Committee to receive transportation update tonight

The Mt. Diablo school district’s special education Community Advisory Committee will receive a transportation update from special education administrator Carolyn Patton tonight, according to the agenda. In addition, Chairwoman Lorrie Davis will report on goal planning for the group.

Here’s the complete agenda for the meeting, which will be held at the district office, 1936 Carlotta Drive in Concord:

DATE: September 4, 2012
TIME: 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
PLACE: Dent Center – Board Room

1. Call to Order 7:00

2. Introductions (7:02 – 7:05)

Please notify the audience during introductions if you are recording the meeting

3. Adoption of Minutes – May 1, 2012 (7:05 – 7:10)

4. Transportation Update – Carolyn Patton (7:10 – 7:40)

5. Chairperson’s Report – CAC Goal Planning: Lorrie Davis (7:40 – 8:05)


6. Old Business (8:15 – 8:35)

6.1 Assistant Superintendent’s Report – Dr. Mildred D. Browne

6.2 Board of Education Report – Lynne Dennler and/or Gary Eberhart

6.3 Board of Education Comments – Lisa Huynh

6.4 Parent Advisory Committee Report

6.5 Budget Advisory Committee Report – Tricia Tamura-Li

6.6 Equity Advisory Team – Dorothy Weisenberger

7. New Business (8:35 – 8:45)

7.1 Assist. Technology & Alternative Augmentative Communication – Christian Patz

7.2 Extended School Year – Samantha Espinosa

7.3 Parent Liaison – Hilary Shen

8. Public Comment (8:45 – 8:55)
Public comment is an opportunity to share concerns and comments with the CAC. In the interest of time, speakers are limited to three (3) minutes each with a total of fifteen (15) minutes for all speakers. Please respect student and personnel privacy. CAC members and district staff may not be able to respond to individual concerns in this forum, but will take your contact information and follow-up with you.

9. Information Items/Announcements/Adjournment (8:55 – 9:00)


There is no mention of the Fiscal Crisis and Management Assistance Team transportation or special education reports. However, it appears that Patton expects to devote 30 minutes to the transportation update, so hopefully she will inform the CAC about when the FCMAT reports will be finalized and when the parent meetings will be held.

Anyone with questions or comments is invited to attend and speak during the agenda items, or at the end of the meeting, if you wish to discuss something not on the agenda.

Also noteworthy is the fact that Mildred Browne is still expected to deliver the assistant superintendent’s report, even though an interim assistant superintendent has already been appointed.

Here is an email message I received from Julie Braun-Martin over the weekend regarding Browne’s upcoming leave of absence:

“Once there is a final action on the matter, Dr. Browne’s leave authorization will appear on the Board agenda. We are not putting her on leave now, because she’s acting in her capacity until the interim assistant superintendent starts.”

What aspects of special education transportation do you think Patton should address in her update?

SEPT: 20 UPDATE: I have received the following CAC update from chairwoman Lorrie Davis in an email, but the post does not yet show up on the CAC blog:

MDUSD Transportation Update #2

Update #2 September 20, 2012
Dr. Lawrence has informed us that the decision to “cluster” is a managerial decision; therefore, board approval is not required. He stated the decision will be made by Transportation (department) and the board will be informed of the decision. I personally think board policy has to be approved by the board of education. We were also told that the parent meetings will be to INFORM parents of decisions, not gather parent input. I find these statements very disturbing. Parents – please contact your board members and provide your input. Here is the link to the board members names and contact info.

Posted on Tuesday, September 4th, 2012
Under: Education, Mt. Diablo school district | 63 Comments »