Superintendent's eNewsletters 2018-19


Mountain View Whisman School District
May 15, 2019
In this edition ...
  • May 16 Board of Trustees meeting: Reviewing the budget, Bullis Mountain View charter revocation
  • Let’s Talk: English Language Learners
  • LCAP draft ready for review; Public hearing on May 30
  • Afterschool care programs registering students now
  • High Fives: Middle school music, food and nutrition, design teams and preschool inclusion


From the Superintendent

Reviewing the budgetAyinde Rudolph

On Thursday, the Board of Trustees will review the District budget for 2019-20 as part of the typical adoption process (to view the presentation, click here). While we are not out of the woods yet, we are in a very different place compared to this time last year. Last year we were caught off guard by the amount of the budget deficit. Today, we are adamant that we will not make the same errors again.

Last year, I wrote to you about calculation errors that led us to make budget cuts. I also pledged that we would be scrutinizing the budget and our processes as to avoid these errors in the future. I also promised we’d work to ensure that we could continue to invest in our students, staff members and instructional programs to yield positive outcomes for all of our students - in the most cost-effective manner.

In February, Trustees made the difficult decision to approve budget reductions to save $3.69 million. These reductions are needed due to deficit spending as a result of a focus on student achievement and retaining quality staff. Some of the planned reductions for next year include eliminating, restructuring and reducing some positions, and using one-time revenue for textbook adoptions.

Since then, here’s what we have been working on:

  • To make sure our budget assumptions are correct, we ordered an independent, outside audit of MVWSD second interim finances by School Services of California (click here for a link to the audit).
  • We are no longer budgeting one-time funds as a continued, consistent stream of revenue. For example, developer fees revenue can vary as much as $1 million from year to year.
  • We have started an analysis of our staffing ratios at all sites, to ensure we are cost-effective in all areas.

Even with budget reductions for 2019-20, the District is estimating an operational deficit of $2.8 million next year. There is good news on the horizon - we still have a 17% reserve in year 3 and positive-looking Governor’s budget - but it’s not time to relax yet. We’ll continue to look for additional ways to reduce our spending and move toward a balanced budget.

- Dr. Ayindé Rudolph

Bullis Mountain View charter revocation
The Board of Trustees approved a charter school petition from Bullis Mountain View (BMV) on December 20. In April, the Board began the process of charter revocation because BMV has not upheld provisions of its charter and of law (Education Code Section 47607(d)).

On Thursday, the Board will continue the charter revocation process with consideration of Issuance of Notice of Intent to Revoke due to BMV not remedying violations. BMV has not:

  • Complied and fulfilled all requests around enrollment and opening procedures
  • Worked in good faith to finalize the memorandum of understanding with its authorizer, MVWSD, and adhere to Education Code 47607(c)
  • Demonstrated progress toward all requirements outlined in the charter approval
  • Provided all requested information about Board members and meeting dates

BMV sent a message to the community that they do not plan to open on MVWSD’s campus this August. As the authorizer, we will continue to hold BMV to the parameters consistent with their charter petition and MVWSD’s approval. To view the materials to be presented at the meeting, click here. To view correspondence between BMV and MVWSD, click here.

May 16 Board of Trustees meeting:
Board of Trustees meetings scheduled for May 16, 30 and June 13 will be held in the Stevenson School multi-use room, 750 San Pierre Way.

At the May 16 meeting, the Board will review the draft budget, continue the charter revocation process and more. To view the agenda, please click here.


Let's Talk: English Language Learners

MVWSD has a very diverse population and we value that in our  community. We work hard through a variety of methods to help our English Language Learners succeed. Some supports include English Language Development Program, Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP), and early identification.

Let's talk ELL

Learn more in this ninth episode in the "Let's Talk" video series. 

Click here for the video.  Spanish subtitles are available.

LCAP draft ready for review; Public hearing on May 30

The District has completed the draft of the 2019-20 LCAP (Local Control Accountability Plan) (click here for the link). The draft LCAP was developed in tandem with the District's Strategic Plan using data collected from the following:
· District and site input meetings
· Input collected from staff, student and parent surveys

Please provide your input about the plans' goals, actions, services and expenditures in this online form. Input will be collected through Friday, May 21 and the District will review and respond to all input during the week of May 27.

A public hearing for the LCAP will be held during the Board of Trustees meeting on Thursday, May 30 at 7 p.m. at Stevenson Elementary, 750 San Pierre Way.


On-campus before- and afterschool care programs registering students now

We know that finding reliable, high-quality, affordable childcare is a challenge for many of our families and staff members. Increasing these offerings at our schools to meet demand has been a priority for MVWSD. On campus, our schools host several long-standing programs -- Beyond the Bell and the YMCA Silicon Valley Before and Aftercare -- in addition to a new one planned to open this fall, Right at School. Click here for registration information and fees


High Fives

The Graham Middle School STEM 8 design class recently hosted James Larsen who is the co-founder of and lead developer at Educational Gaming Environments (EdGE) at TERC. He partners with NIKE SportsLab, and is a panel judge for the Nike Design Challenge. A team of students from STEM 8 - Maxwell B., Eriberto A., Santiago M., and Kaitlyn C.- recently had their “Electric Shoe” design place in top 5 in the SportsLab/Nike Design Challenge. More than 800 students participated across the U.S. Designs were judged on design thinking, whether parkour athletes could actually use them, a pitch, and research. The students each received a pair of Nike Epic React shoes and the whole class received individual Nike drawstring backpacks. Agnes Kaiser is their STEM mentor teacher. See the post here.

The Latham Preschool co-teaching inclusion program recently received recognition from the County Office of Education's Inclusion Collaborative. This year, they participated in the intensive Embedded Instruction program which provides training and coaching to early education teachers to promote high quality inclusive practices for children with special needs in general education classrooms. The teaching team - consisting of Lupe Carranza, Imelda Barragan and Nanda Holur-Venkatesh - was acknowledged as the 2019 Inclusion Super Star Classroom and Lupe Carranza received recognition as the Inclusion Teacher of the Year.

The District’s Food and Nutrition Services partnered with Stanford University on a study of its mobile meal program. A paper about the study recently was accepted for publication in the Journal of Community Health. Congrats to the department for partnering with community agencies on resources and finding innovative ways to reach at-risk communities with free, nutritious food.

Graham Middle School and Crittenden Middle School hosted the CMEA (California Music Educators Association) Band and Orchestra Festival recently for area middle and high school bands and orchestras. The Graham Wind Ensemble band performed and received a rating of Excellent, and the Graham Chamber Strings performed and received a rating of Superior. Congratulations to both groups and thanks to our volunteers who pulled off this important event!


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