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Public asked to help choose new name for Castro Elementary

Original post made on Apr 22, 2015

The Castro Site Planning Council is asking the public for its input on naming the two new Castro schools, following a decision to split up the Mountain View Whisman School District's Dual Immersion (DI) program and the Castro Elementary traditional school program.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, April 22, 2015, 1:18 PM

Comments (12)

Posted by James Thurber
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 22, 2015 at 2:39 pm

One of the schools should retain the Mariano Castro name. The other school? Why not Juana Briones de Miranda - one of the great ladies of California's Rancho Era. Despite statehood and most of the rancho lands being "confiscated" by California courts, Señora Briones de Miranda was able to keep her rancho as she had become a true community leader. As copied from the Wikipedia article:

"Briones excelled not only in business and farming: her reputation for hospitality and skills in herbal medicine and midwifery were widely recognized. She trained her nephew, Pablo Briones—who was later known as the Doctor of Bolinas (California)—in medicinal arts, although she never received a formal education and could not read or write."

The Rancho covered much of Palo Alto, Mountain View, Los Altos and Los Altos Hills. It is because of her civic duty and business sense that our communities exist today.

Posted by Already Taken
a resident of Bailey Park
on Apr 22, 2015 at 2:43 pm

Juana Briones is a great person in local history. That's probably why there is already an elementary school in Palo alto with that name.
I think we should have something unique but equally relevant to local history.

Posted by Brett
a resident of another community
on Apr 22, 2015 at 10:16 pm

Fidel Castro Elementary. It's perfect. All of the communists around here will want to send their kids there.

Posted by Hee hee
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 23, 2015 at 3:34 am

I like the idea of combining a literary reference and a reference to the local scientific community, along with an historical reference. My suggestion: 1) all lower-case (an e.e. cummings reference), 2) a reference to NASA and our space history. Let's call it "astro". It's cheap and easy to implement -- just remove the "C"!

Posted by Hum Baby
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 23, 2015 at 2:33 pm

Let's name it Brandon Crawford Elementary, after the Giants shortstop who was born in Mountain View.


Posted by Remember history
a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 25, 2015 at 12:30 am

How about Goliad?

Posted by Donna
a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 28, 2015 at 7:47 pm

cant we just stick to educating. Seems like you have a bigger problem at hand. For example the PACT how much time has been waisted on a program that uses public taxes. Now changing names. Let's get back to basics!!

Posted by PACT parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 29, 2015 at 11:59 am

@Donna of Rex Manor,

Perhaps you were not aware that the Stevenson PACT school is a PUBLIC school, just as the Dual-Immersion is PUBLIC. Like the other 6 PUBLIC schools, they are all run by the Mountain View Whisman School District (MVWSD). Perhaps there is a great deal about our "choice" schools you are NOT aware of?

Wasting time is bashing something you know little or nothing truthful about.

Both PACT and D.I. are district-wide "choice" schools and are available for K-5 children across the entire district. The parents who feel that PACT or D.I. is the best style of education for their specific kid may apply for any open slots in either public choice school. Most years more kids apply to each than there are available slots. All new requests are put into a random lottery to select which kids will get in their preferred choice.

Stevenson PACT is located at the school site which has the best centralized commuter-friendly location, which gives the best chance for parents all across our district to be able to reach it in their commute. Any other location would make it harder for many parents to get there.

Dual-Immersion is a Spanish/English dual-language immersion school with the goal to teach and generally communicate in both Spanish and English so that both the Native Spanish and native English speakers can learn their academic lessons in both languages while learning the opposite language from native speakers. DI is the most effective way for Spanish speaker to learn English and the best way for English speakers to learn Spanish.

D.I. is located at the Castro site because that's where the vast majority of native Spanish speakers live AND because so many of them would have great difficulty traveling to any other campus. The English-speakers must be able to commute to the Castro site if they wish to get into DI.

Both choice schools are very popular and have waiting lists. Some of our other public schools end up with small waiting lists as well.

Stevenson PACT school is a progressive educational philosophy school with focus on Project-Based-Learning (PBL), team-learning, small groups, big groups, and other alternative learning processes. PACT also includes highly organized voluntary parental-involvement in many available styles. There are many ways PACT parents can choose to help the school as best they feel they can.

The most publicized parental-involvement, which is also most badly mis-understood by those who have not taken the time to really research it, is the parents who work under the direct supervision of the teachers in the classroom. Teachers basically get extra hours for their class from parents who take care of tasks which would otherwise have to be done by teachers. This allows teachers more time on their educational duties. Parental in-class volunteers also allow teachers to break up their class into small groups to focus on planned exercises for each group.

No family is turned away from PACT simply because they don't have time in their day to donate hours to the school. There are countless flexible ways for parents to help, but again, no child is turned away based on anything other than they must be residents of the district and meet other normal public school requirements.

PACT, like ALL other public schools in the district have fund-raiser activities. NO child is ever turned away because of a lack of money for a donation.

Again, which children get into D.I. or PACT is entirely the result of a random lottery, NOT other factors.

PACT started as a small program at Slater, then the school district closed Slater (PACT parents strongly objected to this closure), the the PACT program was sent to Castro, then Castro got badly over-crowded and PACT was bounced again over to Stevenson right next door to Theuerkauf Traditional school.

Stevenson has proven to be the best possible location for PACT to draw kids from every part of the district.

Virtually everyone who speaks negatively of PACT are seriously mis-informed and some are just sour-grapes because they didn't "win" the lottery to get in PACT when they tried.

Everyone I know of who got in PACT and eventually left did so because they were moving out of the district for unrelated reasons.

Posted by Take a deep breath
a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 29, 2015 at 6:04 pm

PACT Parent, it's time to take a deep breath and maybe go walk the dog. You don't need to write a treatise every time someone on this discussion board mentions PACT. I really don't think you're helping the public perception of our school.

Posted by Chillax
a resident of Willowgate
on Apr 29, 2015 at 6:18 pm

Chill out, PACT Parent. It's tiresome.


Posted by Mom
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 29, 2015 at 7:04 pm

@see this is why the Pact Isn't good for our children. You only know your program and what it does for You. Self serving program. You reveal the l lack of integrity. Comes out loud and clear. I remember very well what The pact did at Slater.
So back to renaming or adding another name to Castro that it self has a history that you don't care about clearly.
Back in the days when we were one there was a kind principal .
Maria Loya Maria Loya, former principal at Slater School in Mountain View, died May 24 at her home in Tracy. She was 61. Ms. Loya, who retired in February after serving in the school district for 19 1/2 years, worked with Headstart Migrant Education of Santa Clara County and juvenile court and served on the board of YMCA and scouts.
Over the years, she instituted the In-School Scouting Program, which teaches children how to make healthy snacks and deal with strangers and emergencies; and wrote a grant to start a child-care program, called Kid's Place, which is implemented in all Mountain View elementary schools.
"I can't say this strong enough: Kids came first with her. She was always concerned with their well being," said Joanne Brown, Slater special programs coordinator and longtime friend and co-worker of Loya's. "If they needed shoes, she'd get them; if their family needed food, she'd find a source; if they wanted to go to summer camp, she'd work something out."
A nun for 23 years at Holy Sisters Family in Fremont, Ms. Loya received the first "Year of the Child" award and the "Women of the Year" award from the local Business and Professional Women's Club. she stood for all children and parents. Consider her Loya School. Many of you old timers may remember her.

Posted by Mom
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 29, 2015 at 7:08 pm

So to all you PACT parents get off your high house and humbled yourself.

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