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LASD proposes to "Pack and Ship" MV kids across the district
Original post made
by Tanya Raschke, The Crossings,
on May 23, 2007
Los Altos School District will break ground in June on a $12M project to renovate Bullis-Purissima School in Los Altos Hills. In 2008, Bullis-Purissima will be reopened to provide a neighborhood school to the residents of Los Altos Hills. This is a critical step in healing the enormous rift created when the school was closed in 2003. It appears that this long delayed and much needed goodwill toward Los Altos Hills will come at at the expense of students from Mountain View. In the vast majority of the boundary line scenarios currently under consideration, neighborhoods North of El Camino Real (including the Crossings, 49 Showers/Old Mill, the Del Medio Corridor, and Ortega/Showers/California/El Camino) are specifically singled out and catapulted across the district - sending children from this compact geographic area to up to 5 different schools. Currently, the area North of El Camino is served by two schools, Santa Rita and Almond. Not surprisingly, these "Pack and Ship" scenarios minimimze disruption to the district residents who live in Los Altos. No other area of the distict is slated for similar treatment. The area North of El Camino has been targeted for widely varying and ever-changing reasons. First, we have been wholly blamed for the "explosive growth" of the district, even though the District's Demographers have shown in their report that the number of students from Los Altos is growing 1 1/2 times faster than the number of students from Mountain View. Our population of English Learners has been thoroughly investigated. Thankfully, it is clear that the existing programs at Santa Rita and Almond have been shown to be excellent, and "graduates" from the existing program go on to be excellent academic performers. Many of us live in smaller, "lower cost" housing. The area North of El Camino has a blend of single family homes, condominiums and apartment buildings. However, housing type can not be used as a basis for discriminatory practices on the part of a public school district. The fact that we live in a transit-friendlly location has obviously not resonated with the Board. All LASD kids deserve a neighborhood school! If redrawing lines cannot accomplish that task, then I feel it is high time for the district to adresss the needs of its students head-on and work to open a new K-6 elementary school in the Northern part of the district.