Mountain View Voice

Opinion - June 1, 2012

Important reasons for supporting Measure G

by Jim Pollart

Mountain View's elementary and middle schools are quietly becoming some of the most sought after in the region. After years laboring in the shadow of nearby high-performing school districts, the Mountain View Whisman School District has established its own reputation for outstanding education. For each of the past five years, student test scores have improved. Our scores now exceed state standards for excellence.

Our teachers work hard every day to deliver results in the classroom. Now it's time for Mountain View voters to pass Measure G, which will provide the funds needed to modernize our schools so our students can continue moving forward.

Most of our schools were built over 50 years ago. Older school buildings threaten our students' safety and inhibit their academic performance. Measure G will enable our district to address the following issues:

•School buildings must be brought up to current earthquake standards and made safe from hazardous materials;

•Older buildings cost more to operate, wasting energy and dollars that could otherwise go to the district general fund;

•With ongoing state budget cuts, our schools struggle to keep pace with changing technology that is essential for a 21st-century education;

•As word spreads that Mountain View's schools are on the rise, more families are moving into our district and student enrollment is growing, putting further pressure on our district's facilities.

How do we tackle these challenges? The answer is simple: vote yes on Measure G, which will upgrade our aging buildings with a focus on safety, efficiency, and modernization. Let's bring our schools up to current seismic codes, and remove all hazardous materials. Measure G would:

• Put the savings from energy and operational efficiencies back into classrooms to support students, teachers, and programs;

• Modernize our buildings for future technology needs;

• And finally, let's expand capacity at our existing schools to serve current students, and make provisions to re-open a elementary school in the next decade if enrollment continues to increase.

Measure G includes strict accountability requirements to ensure the money is spent wisely and as promised. Every penny goes directly to upgrade our schools. No funds can be taken by the state, or be spent on teachers' or administrators' salaries, pensions, or benefits. An independent citizens' oversight committee and annual audits will monitor expenditures over the life of the program.

Even if you do not have children attending our local schools, a growing reputation for excellent schools increases demand for homes in our community and increases all our property values.

Each and every student in our community deserves safe and modern schools, and an opportunity to get a great education. Measure G will help ensure that Mountain View students are well prepared for the world ahead. Our students and teachers are doing their part Now it's our turn, as a community, to come together and give them the modern facilities they need to reach new heights. Please join me in supporting Measure G this Tuesday, June 5.

Jim Pollart is parent whose children attend Mountain View Whisman schools.

Comments

Posted by Monta Loma Mom, a resident of Monta Loma
on Jun 1, 2012 at 12:01 pm

"Mountain View's elementary and middle schools are quietly becoming some of the most sought after in the region."

Prove this claim. Or does this just apply to the PACT program?

Funny how the district always trots out Jim Pollart for PR. [Portion removed. Please refrain from personal attacks.] This is more about PACT getting their way and more money and not about the district at large.


Posted by parent, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jun 1, 2012 at 11:12 pm

"Mountain View's elementary and middle schools are quietly becoming some of the most sought after in the region."

Is this a fact or an opinion?

Perhaps the Voice could interview some realtors to find out how frequently buyers specifically request Mountain View because of their schools.

We do know that because of the type of funding, anyone who seeks out MVWSD schools must be a resident, as the district allows no interdistrict transfers and expels students who live outside the district.

Is having more than 500 children at an elementary school a good thing? Do we want our children to attend large schools where they are a face in the crowd, or smaller schools where they are more likely to receive more personal attention?


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