Forum on unification of Alpine, Grossmont districts set for Oct. 20 in Alpine
East County News Service
October 17, 2014 (Alpine) – Two lawsuits have been filed against the Grossmont Union High School District this week over its failure to fund construction of an Alpine High School. The litigation was filed by Alpine Taxpayers for Bond Accountability (ATBA) along with individual Alpine taxpayer plaintiffs who allege waste and misuse of Propositions H and U bond funds under the California Code of Civil Procedure. The ATBA law suit was filed simultaneously with an action by the Alpine Union School District (AUSD). Both suits seekan injunction to prevent the further expenditure of Prop H and Prop U bond funds until a decision is rendered by the State Board of Education in the coming months on how GUHSD assets will be allocated with regard to Alpine’s proposed unification of its school district.
Amid the controversy, a forum on the proposed unification of the GUHSD and Alpine Union School District organized by supporters of unification is scheduled for Monday, October 20th at 6:30 p.m. at Alpine Elementary School’s auditorium, 1950 Alpine Blvd. in Alpine.
By Miriam Raftery
October 13, 2014 (San Diego)--One of the more colorful election contests locally this year is a race for a seat on the San Diego Community College Board of Trustees between Donna Woodrum, a religious conservative, and Maria Neito Senour, a professor with a commitment to social justice and diversity.
By Janis Russell
October 5, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)- Four candidates are running for the La Mesa-Spring Valley School District Board. They are incumbents Bob Duff, Jerry Lecko and Rick Winet, and newcomer David Chong in the La Mesa-Spring Valley School District. (See the district map: http://www.lmsvsd.k12.ca.us/cms/lib2/CA01001633/Centricity/Domain/184/MAP-Schools.pdf).
ECM spoke with Superintendent Brian Marshall about the issues the district is facing. Marshall cited the budget, implementation of academic and innovative programs, wages, and bringing technology into classrooms.
By Miriam Raftery
October 4, 2014 (Sacramento)—Governor Jerry Brown earlier pledged to sign a $100 million funding bill for the University of California and California State University systems ($50 mlilion each)—but only if property tax revenues met or exceeded projections.
The most competitive applicant pool in SDSU history has yielded its highest achieving freshman class
October 3, 2014 (San Diego)--The numbers are in and San Diego State University’s incoming class of freshmen is the highest-achieving in the history of the university.
By Miriam Raftery
September 30, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) --Girls will be girls, and boys will be boys. That seems to be the finding of a new study that’s found dramatic differences between the genders when it comes to how kids learn.
By Miriam Raftery
September 26, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) – A new website, www.GUHSDBoardCandidate.com, has been set up by critics of the Grossmont Union High School District Board to draw attention to controversies involving some board members seeking reelection.
LA MESA-SPRING VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT TO DEBUT BROWN V. BOARD OF EDUCATION DOCUMENTARY FILM SEPT. 29
District-Sponsored Student Speech Contest commemorating the 60th Anniversary of the landmark Supreme Court decision a huge success
September 26, 2014 (La Mesa)--Dr. Emma Turner, President of the La Mesa-Spring Valley School District Board of Education, and the District Governance Team, will host a screening on September 29 featuring the First Annual Student Speech Contest held earlier this year. The topic of the speeches was “60 Years Later: What is the Legacy of Brown v. Board of Education?”
Last day to register for Nov. 4 election is Oct. 20
September 23, 2014 (San Diego) - San Diego State University's Rock the Vote campaign officially launched this week and will continue through Election Day on Nov 4. To kick off the campaign on Sept. 23, Associated Students hosted a barbecue on campus with live music, free food, and voter registration tables. Students can also register to vote online at SDSU.edu/Rockthevote.
September 17, 2014 (El Cajon)--Advanced Training Associates, an accredited private college that provides training in medical and business occupations to civilians, veterans and active duty military located in El Cajon, CA, hosted the largest graduation ceremony in the school’s history on September 9.
September 19, 2014 (San Diego)—You won’t be seeing an armored vehicle on San Diego Unified School District campuses after all. The District has decided to return a Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle, or MRAP, that had been donated by the U.S. Department of Defense.
GUHSD SUPERINTENDENT ISSUES STATEMENT ON UNIFICATION; ALPINE EDUCATION LEADER RESPONDS WITH REBUTTAL
By Miriam Raftery
Photo: GUHSD Superintendent Ralf Swenson
September 18, 2014 (Alpine)—The Grossmont Union High School District Board (GUHSD) has passed a resolution opposing the proposed Alpine unification initiative. Now, Superintendent Ralf Swenson has issued a statement to media voicing disappointment that a County committee has approved the unification measure and sent it on to the State Board of Education to take action. He wants to see all voters in the district have a say on unification, not just voters in Alpine.
In his letter, Swenson claims a unified Alpine district won’t be able to afford to build and operate a high school offering programs comparable to those in the Grossmont district but insists that the GUHSD can’t afford to build the school, either. Moreover, he claims that the GUHSD remains 2,400 students below the “trigger” that the district has set for enrollment and that further declines are projected, making the likelihood that the district would ever build the promised 12th high school for Alpine appear to be virtually zero.
His letter has sparked a heated response, including a rebuttal from education leader Bill Weaver debunking dubious claims made by the Superintendent. Weaver has previously co-chaired education and business commitees for both the East County and Mountain Empire Chambers of Commerce.
State’s only community college district to net 2014 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award
September 17, 2014 (El Cajon) - The Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District Tuesday received the 2014 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) award, a national honor recognizing colleges and universities for outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion.
Sep. 14, 2014 (San Diego) The San Diego Unified School District has announced that schools will be on minimum school day tomorrow due to the heat. These will be schools without 100 percent air conditioning.
By Nadin Abbott
September 11, 2014 (San Diego)--California Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Tani Cantil-Sakauye addressed UCSD alumni at the Symphony Towers in downtown San Diego today. She emphasized the need to teach civics to students. She believes it is critical “to educate so people can better understand what the branch does and why we do it.”
Photo by Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego Publications
September 9, 2014 (San Diego) - The University of California, San Diego is ranked the 8th best public university in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. The publication’s 2015 Best Colleges guidebook, released today, ranks UC San Diego the 37th best university in the U.S. among more than 200 public, private and for-profit institutions.
DIVERSITY DIALOGUE CONTINUE TO ENGAGE AT CUYAMACA COLLEGE: SERIES STARTS SEPT. 17, RUNS THROUGH NOV. 12
September 8, 2014 (Rancho San Diego)--The power of music. People of different generations working together. Disabilities that go unrecognized. Talking to your kids about diversity. These topics and more will be covered over the fall semester in six workshops at Cuyamaca College’s Diversity Dialogues, a series now in its third year that focuses on a variety of diversity awareness and social justice issues.
Community asked to sponsor a student for $50 each
September 7, 2014 (La Mesa)--On Saturday, September 13th, the students and staff of the Helix Highlander Band and Color Guard have committed to a 12 hour practice challenge for their annual Rehearse-A-Thon, raising money while perfecting their competitive show.
Provided by The Times of San Diego and San Diego Jewish World, both members of the San Diego Online News Association (SDONA)
September 6, 2014 (San Diego)--A person who was held by campus police after authorities found a San Diego State building marred by graffiti, including swastikas, was described by an SDSU spokeswoman on Wednesday, Sept. 3, as a “54-year-old man from Santee who has known mental issues and was off his medication.”
RALLY TODAY URGES GOVERNOR TO SIGN BLOCK'S BILL ALLOWING COMMUNITY COLLEGES TO OFFER SOME 4-YEAR DEGREES
By Miriam Raftery
September 4, 2014 (San Diego) – Educators and business leaders plan a rally today at 10:30 to urge Governor Jerry Brown to sign Senate Bill 850, a bill by Senator Marty Block (D-San Diego) allowing community colleges to offer four-year degrees in areas where a local workforce need for the degree program can be demonstrated. The bill arrived at the governor’s office on Aug. 28, and he has 30 days from receipt of the measure to approve or veto the legislation.
The rally is planned at SeaBotix, a manufacturer of mini-remotely operated vehicle systems with underwater expertise, and will include a demonstration of how the facility could benefit from the bill.
By Miriam Raftery
September 2, 2014 (Sacramento)--One in five students nationwide is a victim of sexual assault, Increasingly, campuses across America are facing criticism for not doing enough to protect students from sexual assault.
Caption: Head of School Kevin Yaley (left) and San Diego River Park Foundation Trustee Jim Dawe with Parker graduate Marly Isler, signing her booklets. Photo Courtesy of Francis Parker School / Ken Stone
August 27, 2014 (San Diego)-- The San Diego River has stories to tell — if you know where to find them. A booklet by Francis Parker School graduate Marly Isler fills the bill. And it's easy to find.
SAN DIEGO (August 25, 2014) — San Diego State University students are welcomed back this fall with new leadership, changing buildings, accomplished returning and 54 new faculty and a multitude of new majors and classes, which will enhance the student experience.
GROSSMONT LEARNS A LESSON: COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION VOTES TO SUPPORT UNIFICATION OF ALPINE DISTRICT
View a video of the complete San Diego County Board of Education meeting on the unification plan: http://stream.sdcoe.net/wc/boardmeeting081314/
By Miriam Raftery and Bill Weaver
August 17, 2014 (Alpine)--The County Board of Education provided a learning experience Wednesday to the Grossmont Union High School District: If you ignore the will of voters and spend off bond money slated for a new Alpine high school on other projects, there are consequences.
Report finds 3 East County schools among state’s worst for educating English learners
By Miriam Raftery and Sharon Penny
Updated August 14, 2014 to include a response from the GUHSD
August 13, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) -A quarter of all school districts in California are failing to educate many children who don’t speak English, according to figures obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union on the Department of Education’s website.
County News Service
August 17, 2014 (San Diego)--OK, it’s back-to-school time, Let’s start off with a little math review.
August 11, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - A ribbon cutting ceremonyh will be held for the grand opening of El Capitan High School's new physical education building on Friday, August 29 at 1 p.m.
Project amenities for the new 18,405-square-foot building include boys and girls locker rooms, showers, wrestling/aerobics room, fitness/weight room, team rooms, training room and coaches offices. Site upgrades include: demolition of the older locker room building, replacement of new exterior basketball courts, multiple shade structures for outdoor fitness and a new sand volleyball court. See attached invitation.
By Miriam Raftery
August 10, 2014 (San Diego) - It’s back to school time at San Diego State University, which is welcoming 4,600 incoming freshmen and 2,800 transfer students. Orientation events greeted the newcomers, along with over 5,000 parents and guests, with information on class registration and degree requirements, tips for success--and the SDSU Fight Song.
DEADLINE FRIDAY TO FILE AND RUN FOR MOST LOCAL OFFICES: GUHSD LACKS FULL SLATE OF CHALLENGERS FOR SCHOOL BOARD POSITIONS
Hear our interview with GUHSD member Priscilla Schreiber and Nick Marinovich, who says he was pressured to resign off the district's Citizens Bond Oversight Committee, on why they want to see new candidates step forward to run for the board: http://kiwi6.com/file/1fth2nlrky
By Miriam Raftery
August 7, 2014 (San Diego's East County) -- Tomorrow, August 8 at 5 p.m. is the deadline to file for running for most local offices in East County--though if an incumbent opts not to file for reelection, that deadline can be extended for several more days.
Some local districts don't have enough people running to fill the seats--including the Grossmont Union High School District, where at last check only two challengers have filed for three seats, despite controversy including a Grand Jury admonishment. One of those challengers, Dr. Gary Woods, opposes a high school for Alpine and was previously voted out; his election would solidify the anti-Alpine high school majority on the board. (Note: incumbent Dick Hoy has said he won't seek reelection, thus this filing deadline will likely be extended.)
Alpine's Community Planning Group has just 5 candidates so for to fill 7 seats.
These are just two examples of a race where the balance of power could shift--or not--depending on which candidates if any step forward to run.
Local seats on the November ballot include school boards, planning groups, water boards, fire boards, mayor and city councils across East County. Currently a numberof these positions have no candidates filed to run, or only one candidate, leaving voters without a choice.
August 6, 2014 (San Diego) – It’s back to school time—and Check Center locations around San Diego County will give away free backpacks and school supplies to the first 250 children who stop by on Saturday, August 9 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. This includes an East County location at 1090 East Main Street, Suite 103 in El Cajon.