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Bullis scraps plans to open new Mountain View charter school this fall

Original post made on Mar 21, 2019

Bullis Mountain View officials announced Thursday that they will not open a new charter school in Mountain View this fall, accusing the Mountain View Whisman School District of imposing restrictive and vague requirements

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, March 21, 2019, 1:29 PM

Comments (78)

14 people like this
Posted by Bored M
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 1:37 pm

The blame game sounds so petty... Bye Felicia!


124 people like this
Posted by Nice try, Bullis
a resident of Rengstorff Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 1:39 pm

Interesting how Bullis first said they wanted to open a school to help low-income and disadvantaged students -- but now claim that holding them to actually enrolling those students is somehow illegal. I never believed they had a genuine interest in disadvantaged students, much less the ability to help them, and I certainly don't now. Good riddance.


46 people like this
Posted by Bullis Admissions Scandal
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 1:47 pm

This is ALL because their admissions would have been scrutinized and the "Pay to play" would have exposed many many locals as well as the school.
Way to go people!! I'm glad we shut them down!


8 people like this
Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 2:03 pm

Steven Nelson is a registered user.

Good reporting Voice. The BMV '3 points'. 2 for MVWSD and one for BMV (IMO)

#1. BMV is entirely wrong because federal law explicitly allows priorities (unspecified how) for economic class Economically Disadvantaged - but it absolutely does not allow Hispanic, or African-American, or Asian (or White) racial or national origin enrollment "priorities". BMV is just making this up (their doberman lawyer apparently wants a fight)

#2. BMV is mistaking federal/ state sibling priorities. This is allowed but not required (and certainly not #1 as in the BMV Charter 'petition"). BMV was chartered, by MVWSD's Board, with that sibling priority in place, but behind the federal & state allowed "priority" of Economically Disadvantaged (they can be Hispanic, African-American, Asian, or even White)

#3 MVWSD interim testing is quite bad (statistically and uniform vs. time and correlated to the state mandated Smarter Balance standard-of-academic-accountability.). The state has a Smarter Balanced set of interim year exams - and the District Office doesn't' want to use them !!!! I don't know why. BMV is right - the MVWSD tests that were proposed 'are crap' (statistically speaking of course).

SN is a retired Trustee of the MVWSD, and has taught secondary science as a certificated teacher and Peace Corps Volunteer, He has 4 US Patents - to go along with his 35 yr R&D engineering career.


63 people like this
Posted by Marcell Ortutay
a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 21, 2019 at 2:18 pm

The headline here is misleading, and I think it's causing some confusion in the comments.

Bullis is NOT giving up on opening a school in Mt View. They are deciding not to work with the Mt View School District, and instead appealing to the county to approve their petition without the requirements put into place by MVWSD. They don't like the requirements that MVWSD put in because it requires them to enroll certain numbers of low-income children, and also to show in tests that those low-income students outperform others in Mt View.

MVWSD put these requirements in place, I assume, to avoid a "brain drain" where all the rich/middle-income kids apply to Bullis, and the low-income students remain in MVWSD, creating an effectively segregated school system.

Reading between the lines, I doubt Bullis ever intended or wanted their petition to be approved by the district. Getting approval from MVWSD means they're subject to some (minimal?) level of oversight. I believe their "Plan A" was to have the district deny the petition, and then appeal to the county, which would approve it without any restrictions around low-income students.

In terms of what happens next, I would guess:

(1) Bullis appeals to county, claiming that MVWSD has effectively denied their petition
(2) MVWSD sues Bullis, since they didn't actually deny the petition
(3) The legal case centers on whether MVWSD's requirements around low-income students constitutes a denial of the petition

Given that Bullis's original marketing for their school was all about how it would help low-income students, I don't find their argument very convincing. I do wonder, though, how much money the district has and wants to spend on a protracted legal fight with BMV.

In all, I wish Bullis would take a cooperative approach, rather than working in such bad faith.


25 people like this
Posted by MV Public School Supporter
a resident of Waverly Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 2:29 pm

Bullis will be back. Maybe they fear the focus on the college admissions scandal will expose the great lengths that these families will go to priviledge themselves at the expense of others. Agree with others - stay alert. This is not about benefitting those truly in need.


60 people like this
Posted by MV Parent
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 21, 2019 at 2:39 pm

I thought that the ENTIRE reason behind their expansion into Mountain View was to bring their teaching methods to economically disadvantaged students in Mountain View. As soon as their charter was approved by the MVWSD they started backing off from that in a serious way. Now they are taking their ball and going home because the district is holding them accountable for what they set out to do in the first place? Proof that their foray in Mountain View wasn't as altruistic as they claimed.


42 people like this
Posted by A win for Rudolph -- time to go?
a resident of Gemello
on Mar 21, 2019 at 2:44 pm

With a win under his belt, Rudolph may finally move on to a larger school district where he can expand his use of consultants, hire old Gorman associated cronies and one day become a Gorman-esque consultant himself (collecting big bucks from the cronies he put in power).

Then MVWSD would have a chance to hire a decent administrator.

A win for him and win for us?

A BIG win for the MVWSD law firm! How much of our money was spent on this battle?

Of course a loss for BMV. Will they will come back next year?

A loss for low-income students because MVWSD certainly doesn't serve that community well!


15 people like this
Posted by No to Charters
a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 21, 2019 at 2:51 pm

No to Charters is a registered user.

Great news, but Bullis will likely be back with a lawsuit. Stay educated on charter reform in CA. Visit the website below to learn more and connect with others in your community to continue to fight charters:

www.standwithpubliceducation.org


18 people like this
Posted by Jerry67
a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 21, 2019 at 3:00 pm

I'm saddened to see that this debate has the same contentious tone that plagued the Los Altos / Bullis fight. We keep forgetting that our children are watching; it's time for us to demonstrate that adults can be respectful even when they disagree. They can frame conflicts in a way that invites discussion. Adults can avoid personal attack, reckless attributions of supposed motives, and deploying hostile tactics at the first sign of disagreement.
Let's just remember that we're "educating" our children all the time, and modeling is the most powerful method. We shouldn't be surprised to see an uptick in bullying among the kids when their role models aren't much better.


13 people like this
Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 21, 2019 at 3:00 pm

ST parent is a registered user.

@ Marcell Ortutay

"The headline here is misleading,..."

I don't see anything confusing about the headline, it clearly states that BMV is giving up on opening THIS FALL.
Of course, if BMV never honestly intended to open this fall....???

Which is the main thing almost EVERYONE in Mountain View was begging for the BMV leadership to do, DELAY the opening for one year to give all parties TIME to discuss and negotiate and get to know each other in a productive manner, but that's clearly NEVER what BMV wanted.

Everyone, including myself, tried every way we could think of to make the BMV leadership see that there was a huge benefit to all sides if they would just slow down and work WITH the people of Mountain View rather than running rough-shod over all our backs.

Instead, BMV consistently chose ambush tactics and last-minute-itis as their mode of operations and communications. BMV always gave the shortest possible notice and the least possible information they could get away with.

"They don't like the requirements that MVWSD put in because it requires them to enroll certain numbers of low-income children,"

The irony there is that it was the words of the BMV leadership themselves who put themselves in that position. (or was that the BMV plan all along?)

The MVWSD only jumped on the claims of the BMV leadership and simply put the BMV promises into writing. Had the BMV leadership NOT pretended to be all about low-income students, the MVWSD wouldn't have had any reason to hold their feet to the fire that the BMV leadership built.

"...and also to show in tests that those low-income students outperform others in Mt View."

Indeed, but I think this item went slightly off the rails because of the confusion as to exactly which testing results were to be used as the metric of comparison. I think the MVWSD handed BMV an excuse they did not need to give them. Had MVWSD simply specified the state mandated testing results as the comparison metric, I think BMV would have no cause for objection.

Come to think of it, if BMV had written their petition better, they could have headed off almost every thought to object to the petition by the Trustees and district staff. But, as I now believe, BMV never intended to work with the MVWSD, their petition was designed to get rejected OR as a second-choice, to get their fantasy deal with the district.

"...I believe their "Plan A" was to have the district deny the petition, and then appeal to the county, which would approve it without any restrictions around low-income students."

Agreed.

"(1) Bullis appeals to county, claiming that MVWSD has effectively denied their petition
(2) MVWSD sues Bullis, since they didn't actually deny the petition
(3) The legal case centers on whether MVWSD's requirements around low-income students constitutes a denial of the petition"

If only it were going to be that simple.

"In all, I wish Bullis would take a cooperative approach, rather than working in such bad faith."

Everything BMV leadership has done from the start was designed to get rejected by the MVWSD. They couldn't have planned it better.


27 people like this
Posted by Member
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 3:02 pm

NOW do y’all understand what a problem you have at the county board of Ed? Your representative Mah (you elected her!) is working against the school districts in her region. Mah has NO PROBLEM with charters of extreme privilege like BCS. Get rid of her and all the rest of the enablers at SCCBOE


15 people like this
Posted by Whatever
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2019 at 3:18 pm

Whatever is a registered user.

"MVWSD put these requirements in place, I assume, to avoid a "brain drain" where all the rich/middle-income kids apply to Bullis, and the low-income students remain in MVWSD, creating an effectively segregated school system."

MVWSD is a segregated school system. Did BMV really want to help socio-economically disadvantaged kids? Who knows. But the current pay to play system involves being wealthy enough to live in Huff and Bubb neighborhoods, at least for a little while, in order to get your kid in. It also involves having sufficient resources to be able to justify applying to PACT. What's the result? Segregated schools and large achievement gaps. What would be the result of keeping things at the status quo? Probably increased segregation.

The cynical version of me wonders if all this posturing is just the wealthy elite worried that BMV would pull some of the Bourgeois offspring out of their school, allowing MVWSD to justify zoning more disadvantaged students into Huff and Bubb, effectively lowering their school ranking and ultimately their property values. Probably not. I'm sure those parents just have the best interest of the socio-disadvantaged in mind when they attempt to block BMV.



32 people like this
Posted by mavericks74
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 3:46 pm

mavericks74 is a registered user.

How can we vote out the current school board for trying to sabotage student education in the name of protecting their turf?


4 people like this
Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 4:07 pm

Steven Nelson is a registered user.

I do not consider Grace Mah "a problem". I considered her work supporting Some Public Charters good competition for some local public school districts. I also consider her work, strengthening the COE oversights of county chartered charters - Good Work. The oversight 7 or 8 years ago was very lax. Personally, I voted for Mah.

Maybe - if COE grants a Charter (from a BMV petition) they will know how to make clear that the granting - is only being done to the provisions (changes) that they, the Country Board of Education, insist on.

who knows


31 people like this
Posted by Pay Attention
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 21, 2019 at 4:49 pm

BMV wants to enroll FRPL kids. They have priority and they would love nothing more than getting a percentage LARGER than the district ratio. But they cannot guarantee that happens, especially with Rudolph trying to sabotage them at every turn. No school can guarantee a percentage, as they can’t force the FRPL kids to apply. But if they apply, they will get in. Keeping siblings together is important and EVERY other school gets that priority so why should BMV be any different?


11 people like this
Posted by Bored M
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 5:01 pm

@Pay Attention

You are right they cannot guarantee it, but they can use the number of disadvantaged students as a base and then work backwards to determine the number of other available slots. This would serve as motivation to reach out and aggressively enroll the disadvantaged to increase overall capacity. Otherwise, they'd forever be sub-scale.


9 people like this
Posted by Member
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 5:19 pm

Au contraire - ideologue Mah has worked at cross purpose against Palo Alto, Mt View, Los Altos and Sunnyvale districts in the name of choice, which is Milton Friedman religion, not proven beneficial to education


9 people like this
Posted by Hmm
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 5:50 pm

So private schools are not pay to play, renting in Huff neighborhood is it either, but a choice school for families who can’t afford either of those option suddenly is?
I can’t blame those who don’t have their kids attend with 65% low income kids- which almost always guarantees a lot of remedial instruction.
Are some families more equal than others?


12 people like this
Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 21, 2019 at 6:13 pm

ST parent is a registered user.

@Pay Attention

How ironic.

Pay attention and ask yourself this question:
If BMV thought it was perfectly legal to give FRPL kids 3rd priority, WHY does BMV now claim that putting FRPL kids as first priority is illegal?

HOW exactly dose shifting from 3rd to first place make it illegal?

"BMV wants to enroll FRPL kids."

Or so they claimed as the primary excuse for coming to Mountain View, but everything they have done says the opposite.

BMV claimed they were going for 45% FRPL kids, but when MVWSD took them at their word and wanted BMV to put a specific target percentage in writing, the BMV leadership recoiled from that idea and claimed it was illegal.

"They have priority and..."

NO, the BMV petition set FRPL kids BELOW NON-FRPL siblings and BELOW the kids of the BMV founders/staff/Board members.

IF BMV wanted any significant percentage of FRPL kids, they would have put the FRPL kids first without being asked to do so.

The MVWSD took BMV at their word and asked BMV to put FRPL kids ABOVE all other kids and the rest of the list of priorities would remain, just below the FRPL kids. BMV had claimed that the NON-FRPL siblings would not prevent FRPL kids from being enrolled. If BMV was telling the truth, why are they so opposed to making the change?

"..they would love nothing more than getting a percentage LARGER than the district ratio."

Then WHY is BMV rejecting the idea of putting FRPL kids as first priority?

"But they cannot guarantee that happens,..."

But BMV could make it more likely by simply putting FRPL kids as first priority.

"No school can guarantee a percentage, as they can’t force the FRPL kids to apply. But if they apply, they will get in."

NOT according to your next comment...YOU and BMV want NON-FRPL kids siblings AND BMV Founders/staff/Board members to have priority over FRPL kids!

"Keeping siblings together is important and EVERY other school gets that priority so why should BMV be any different?"

Because BMV leadership made it an issue and claimed that they were coming her specifically to educate FRPL kids. BMV leadership made the claim, MVWSD is simply asking them to live up to it.


2 people like this
Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 21, 2019 at 6:26 pm

ST parent is a registered user.

@ Hmm

"So private schools are not pay to play,"

YES, by definition private schools require payment to enroll a student.
And by the way, parents who send their kids to private schools do NOT get a refund on the taxes they also pay to the PUBLIC school district.

So, private school parents pay TWICE, once in taxes that go to the public schools and then to the private schools as tuition. Basically, private school parents make it possible for public schools to have higher budgets than they would if none of the kids went to private schools.

PUBLIC schools, like those in the MVWSD, do NOT require ANY payments or donations or volunteer hours to enroll/educate a student.

"renting in Huff neighborhood is it either,"

You're not paying the school district, you are paying to own or rent a home in the Huff area because you like the school. Just like parents all over the world choose a place to live they can afford to get their kids the best education they can.

"but a choice school for families who can’t afford either of those option suddenly is?"

ALL of the MVWSD public school choice school are EQUALLY open to low-income kids as any of the other public schools are. All a low-income family has to do is apply for enrollment, like any other family.

"I can’t blame those who don’t have their kids attend with 65% low income kids- which almost always guarantees a lot of remedial instruction."

OK, but you're assuming that such schools are inherently worse, which I don't believe one bit. Public perception does not reflect reality.

"Are some families more equal than others?"

Well, low-income (FRLP) kids do bring MORE MONEY to the district and school than non-FRLP kids do. (Free/Reduced Lunch Program)


19 people like this
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 6:42 pm

@ST Parent,
I meant families who live in Rex Manor or or near Castro elementary and can’t afford to move to a Huff neighborhood, and didn’t get a spot at Stevenson or Mistral. They may have gotten into BMV but now they are stuck.

I have seen both types of schools (Huff-like and Castro-like) up close and believe me there is a difference.

People who are against BMV either have their kids at a high rated or a choice school already, and are denying choice to the rest.

Signed,
A parent who already has their child in a nice school and has no horse in this race.


20 people like this
Posted by Jason K
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2019 at 7:36 pm

Jason K is a registered user.

“You're not paying the school district, you are paying to own or rent a home in the Huff area because you like the school. Just like parents all over the world choose a place to live they can afford to get their kids the best education they can.“

Yep. That’s the status quo all over “the world”. All it takes is little bit of privilege to fail to notice that while many people might like the school not everyone can afford to live there. Are we to believe that the current demographics of MVWSD are because the poorer citizens looked at Huff and Bubb and thought, “meh, let’s try this other school where the students are doing demonstrably worse.” Or that the rich parents looked at Castro or Theuerkauf and said, “the instruction is exactly the same, I love all the teachers and the principal, but there’s just something I can’t put my finger on that makes me want to live near Huff.”

I highly doubt BMV’s dream would be to have identical demographics to Castro. But I find all this virtue signaling about how BMV represents a wealthy take over of the district to be laughable given that Mountain View already is a class segregated city. Most of this just reads as, “We prefer to benefit from the economic inequality that currently exists so don’t let the big bad charter school shake that up for us.”


42 people like this
Posted by Los Altos parent
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2019 at 8:29 pm

Please be made aware that the bad guy here is not MVWSD. How do I know this? Because the leadership of Bullis has played hardball with the Los Altos district for 16 years, costing our district -- thus our children's educations -- millions of dollars in the process, while spreading very similar vitriol and using the same sort of inflammatory language about our district -- while simultaneously playing the victim card just like this. This charter entity is out to destroy our districts for their own self-interests (cough... profit). Beware and good luck, Mountain View.


1 person likes this
Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 8:36 pm

Steven Nelson is a registered user.

1776 - hey, I tend to like to shake things up, to be in the room 'where it happens'! This mess (yes Rudolph's mess now IMO) is as it is. It is not even quite as dystopian as this game I was playing recently with my (adult kid) family.

Guillotine! "The revolutionary card game where you win by getting a head." (French politics: 1789-94 style). I even think the MVWSD has the requisite venue for starting such a game near the District Office - Tennis Courts.

I'm not yet ready to ask for anyone's ( ).


20 people like this
Posted by JanJT
a resident of Waverly Park
on Mar 21, 2019 at 9:16 pm

Wow, this saga just never ends. I lived through the Bullis saga when their original site starting sinking and Los Altos School District finally decided it could not be rescued. Then, the very wealthy parents decided to open a charter, somehow thinking that LASD had the power of the gods to stop the ground from shifting and this was an evil plot to make their kids go to school across Foothill Expressway, which was unthinkable.

Fast forward 15 years later and here we are again. Different district, different reasons, same special snowflake reasons. Don't get me wrong: there is plenty wrong with Mountain View-Whisman and it's getting worse. But this charter is not the solution to this or any other educational challenges except for a very few children.


36 people like this
Posted by Parent
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 9:56 pm

BCS has a strongly suggested (basically required) donation of $5000 per child per year, and every year it publishes a list to the entire school of who has donated and the amounts (in ranges). It basically shames families that are unable to donate. Furthermore, the students of families that make large donations are given special treatment (e.g., lead parts in school plays, special solos in choir, special recognition by administration, etc.).

Los Altos BCS parents were not sure how BMV was going to fund the school without diverting funds from other BCS schools. BCS claims that the $5000 is required to "run" the school and pay the teachers. The education is all-around excellent and bad teachers are fired, but it's not all roses, especially for parents of limited means. You will never be asked to be on any committees, invited to join the Board or Foundation, or invited to join one of the secret groups that drive many school priorities. It's really more like a private school that takes advantage of public funds.


17 people like this
Posted by Parent
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2019 at 9:56 pm

Make Bullis enroll LOW INCOME AND SPECIAL NEEDS students at the same rate as the local school district!


19 people like this
Posted by Good Riddance for now Bullis!!
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 10:38 pm

Good Riddance for now Bullis!! is a registered user.

Bullis and Anderson-Rosse's little ploy could be seen a mile away. They never wanted to work with the district. The district ASKED them to delay one year so things could be worked out in an orderly manner but they didn't do it. And now blaming the district. Hilarious. Even if they scam their way back next year, atleast we saved a bunch of money this year!

Los Altos parents warned us. Here we go!

As a tax payer, I am going to be giving a piece of my mind to Anderson-Rosse and her ilk at newschool@bullischarterschool.com. and I encourage you all to do the same.


35 people like this
Posted by Good Riddance for now Bullis!!
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 10:43 pm

Good Riddance for now Bullis!! is a registered user.


Bullis MV webpage. All it says is:

ADMISSIONS

​"Our Charter was denied by the District so we cannot enroll students."

Hilarious.

They accepted the charter with the conditions and now they say "it was denied." they can't fulfill the conditions! Go back to the videos of the meetings - they never said NO to the conditions!!!

Who has been following this saga and who smells something rotten in Denmark???

Does anyone else think this is PR ploy on Bullis' part??


27 people like this
Posted by No to Bullis Bullies
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 10:46 pm

No to Bullis Bullies is a registered user.

I'm totally wondering about something...

If Bullis thought the conditions were illegal, then why didn't they say that 3 months ago when they accepted the district's approval which clearly came with the conditions?

Is anyone else curious about that?


10 people like this
Posted by Kevin at MV Voice ain't no friend to public ed
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2019 at 10:53 pm

Kevin at MV Voice ain't no friend to public ed is a registered user.



"Mountain View Whisman trustees approved the petition on Dec. 20, but put a series of significant last-minute requirements on the charter school that were legally dubious and drastically changed how it could enroll students."

Seriously, Kevin Forestieri?? I guess you must be an expert on ed and charter laws. They were NOT last minute. The district had NO TIME on this at all. The CHARTER was last minute. What was the district supposed to do?? Why don't you mention that?? I have been following your reporting of our schools and I'm so sick of your slanted reporting. Anyone else feel the same way??

Such a one-sided article as usual. You sell out our public education and schools each and every time.


17 people like this
Posted by Hello political machine
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 21, 2019 at 11:53 pm

Bullis-related comment threads are usually full of haters and anti-charter propaganda but I have to say this thread is an impressive performance. The political machine is organized and ruthless.

The "ain't no friend" bit is a lightly veiled threat by the local political machine against Kevin. The machine expects Kevin to suppress inconvenient facts and step in line with the propaganda.

The machine has long enjoyed a monopoly in MVWSD. An incursion by BMV would breach that monopoly, and the prospect of charter growth is an existential threat to their power and money. So they fight. Dirty.


12 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2019 at 2:06 am

I wondered about this issue of the non-approval approval at the time. They were really mealy mouthed in that board meeting where they approved it, except for the one trustee who declined the petition. His rationale was absurd.

The involvement of people from Marin County in the district's process was very concerning. The lawyer retained by MVWSD seems to be involved in bringing these non-involved persons in to lobby elected officials in MVWSD. Their situation is not relevant to the one here, but in any event, they have no right to control what happens in a different county.

MVWSD has big problems next year with this new rejiggering of attendance boundaries and the specific effect on low income families in the district. The news about Mistral yesterday was really bad.

I hope the county board will approve next year's charter on appeal. I think a judicial ruling will be needed to effect that, but maybe they can just do it on their own. After all, they do have a supervisory role over MVWSD in certain respects, and one of them is relative to charter petitions. California's laws don't allow a halfway approval of a charter petition by injecting requirements from the approver unless those requirements are agreed to by the petitioner. In this case BMV made every effort to negotiate the matter in good faith. MVWSD did not do the same. For the sake of the families seeking to enroll their kids in this program I hope the county board overrides the local district's abrogation of duty. Just the conversations with the county board's legal counsel might perhaps enlighten the clumsy lawyer from Marin County and cause the district to correct its mistake in time for the district to retain the monitoring over the charter.


16 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2019 at 2:15 am

BMV was far from being a bully in this. That must be why they tried for so long to get the district back on track to do a proper job with the proposal. They could have moved on earlier, but then everyone would fault them for that. The district kept sounding like it wanted to do the right thing, but in the end it's their actions that count. Bullis made it very clear in letters to the district that they had big concerns. The district nicely published the letters on its website. Bullis was pointing out the illegality of the approval. The district called in a non-conditonal approval but they wanted changes to the petition. Very dubious. If anything they were trying to bully the charter school. The charter school said it would be willing to wait a year, if the district needed more time. The board members had that in writing, and then in their meeting they choose to ignore it, by saying if they wanted to agree to a hiatus they needed to be at the meeting where the written document was discussed. That was very funny the way that discussion went. One board member wanted to revisit the idea of the delay that Bullis offered. Then the guy who voted no INSISTED that the vote go on without even discussing the issue of the one year delay raised by another board member. She asked that it be discussed before she finalized her vote, which is reasonable. The other guy cut her off. It was like they PLANNED to go the route of a non-approval approval in advance.


9 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2019 at 2:33 am

@Parent.

The funding for BMV would be about $3K more per student in MVWSD than the Los Altos School district funded BCS per student in LASD last year. So, the BCS parents in Los Altos were not wondering how the school would be funded. A different district would fund this, and they'd have to fund more if the fraction of disadvantaged kids exceeded the fraction in MVWSD. The program of BMV was somewhat less costly than the program of BCS. Another difference that riles the teacher's union is that the retirement benefits would have been a 401K at BMV vs. the state STRS system in LASD and at BCS. But one advantage of the 401K is that it ADDS ON to the pension of a teacher who already has credits in STRS.

It's amazing how many uninformed speculations exist about all this. For the record, MVWSD has been spending more per student than LASD. Oops. And LASD spends more per student than does BCS. So BMV has plans to spend more per student than BCS. So, see, in order of spending per student we have BMV <BCS <LASD < MVWSD. There you go. (Except MVWSD is trying to cut back, but that has no affect on BMV as they already get the state mandated minimum of funding.)


25 people like this
Posted by Bullis Admissions Scandal
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 22, 2019 at 5:03 am

There is little doubt that the recent admissions scandal had Bullis back pedaling, hoping nobody look too closely at their admissions.
It's to late.
Bullis has an entrance fee, and if you don't fit their per-determined mold and don't offer enough money, they'll keep you out.


45 people like this
Posted by Grew Up Here
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 22, 2019 at 7:40 am

Grew Up Here is a registered user.

In summary:

BMV: We want to come to MV and do great things for SEL students in MV! Here is our charter where we describe the great things we want to do for MV SEL students! We will be here next year!! Give us space.

MVWSD: Ok. Your charter is approved with requirement that you actually do the things you said you would in in your charter. Here is space for you.

BMV: Wait, what? We didn't actually mean what we wrote! Unfair! You can't make us do the things we said we'd do! (Stomps feet, goes home.)


7 people like this
Posted by SRB
a resident of St. Francis Acres
on Mar 22, 2019 at 7:52 am

@Mountain View Voice - Any official statement from the BMV Board Members (Anderson-Rosse is not listed as one on the BMV web site)? Did that board even meet to make that postponement decision? Did that board even meet once in public?


15 people like this
Posted by A BCS Parent
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 22, 2019 at 9:50 am

A lot of misinformation in this thread, some of them lies about BCS. Here are a few facts that I'm in a position to know:

There is no "required" donation from families, either in money or in time. BCS is a free public school.

There is no "list" to name and shame people - donations aren't required in the first place. I know a BCS family that donated $0 for their first three years and they said there were no consequences, it wasn't an issue at all.

It's true that voluntary donations are requested of families that have the means, and $5000 is the suggested amount. The reason for this is that LASD withholds roughly that amount of per-student public funding for their own budget, leaving BCS with the statewide legal minimum. Yes that means LASD profits roughly $5000 from each student going to BCS, and this money is unavailable for BCS to pay teachers.

BCS does not and cannot pick and choose its students. Because there are more applications than seats there is a random lottery with government-approved non-discriminatory priorities. You can bet that the haters watch this like a hawk and will immediately pounce if there are any factual irregularities. Since there are none the haters invent and insinuate such claims instead.

When there are rampant rumors and misinformation about $5000 being required and supposed discrimination in admissions, what would you think is the effect on families who are thinking about applying? The families who would benefit the most from BCS's programs (the disadvantaged ones) get the impression that they aren't welcome. Because of lies from BCS's opponents!


13 people like this
Posted by Love public schools
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 22, 2019 at 10:28 am

Bullies again showed their true colors by not wanting to enroll low income students. As parents of this neighborhood, we don't want this fake charter school anywhere. A school board full of ego, zero interests in it's students well-being, no retentions for its teachers should have never existed. We don't want Bullies neither bullies for our public schools, get out of the Bay area, period.


22 people like this
Posted by Cindy Harris
a resident of Whisman Station
on Mar 22, 2019 at 10:36 am

I am a retired public school teacher. I like that the Mountain View School District is requiring the Bullis Charter School to be accountable to the community and not leave out “subgroups” of students. Charter and private schools often do not include the children who need additional support. When a charter school diverts monies from the public school system, they should at the very least meet public school goals and expect assessment and the supervision of their host district. Share the responsibility for educating our little ones in a way that that supports the host district. Give not just take.


9 people like this
Posted by Rumors abound because of secrecy
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 22, 2019 at 11:13 am

Bullis pulled WAAAY back when their feet were put to the fire regarding their admissions. In the light of the shameful "buy your way in" scandals, Bullis knows it's in the cross hairs.


4 people like this
Posted by Ummm
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 22, 2019 at 11:31 am

@ A BCS Parent

If there is no "name and shame" at BCS regarding donations, how do you know that your acquaintance has not donated? My kids currently attend a MVWSD school with a relatively big "ask," but I couldn't tell you who has donated or how much.

I have heard about BCS literally posting lists next to classroom doors showing who has donated and who hasn't. I've heard this from multiple people unconnected to each other, including from people at BCS.


12 people like this
Posted by A BCS Parent
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 22, 2019 at 11:43 am

Hello @Ummm, glad you asked!

I learned that the family didn't donate only because they told me in person, and they told me because they were upset about these rumors. They were OK with telling me and others because it really isn't a thing to worry about!

You've heard otherwise purely because of the rumor mill, which the anti-BCS crowd is hatefully perpetuating. "Have you heard about this?" "Yes, I have!"


20 people like this
Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 22, 2019 at 12:28 pm

ST parent is a registered user.

@A BCS Parent

Hey, BCS Parent, other BCS/BMV supporters and BMV leadership too,

For many years now I read the sad stories of the wasteful/costly animosity and political and legal games between the LASD and BCS and I was just sad for the families and tax-payers of Los Altos.

I had always assumed that the problems were caused by a stupid, vindictive and short-sighted LASD decision to reject the BCS petition and when the County approved BCS, I assumed everything the LASD did since then was intentional harassment. I've even posted that conclusion on past articles on the issue of BCS. I had put all the blame on the LASD.

I also wished that the LASD board meetings from those early days were on video so we could go back and see how the LASD and BCS interacted. I felt that would have been proof.

When we in Mountain View were all taken by surprise that BMV was going to open in the MVWSD for the 2019-2020 school year, I spoke to the Dr. Rudolph and to the Trustees about not making the same mistakes the LASD did and to "play nice" with BMV.

I knew from the BCS stories that charters have basically all the power and almost zero over-sight, so fighting with them was counter-productive. I asked the Board to approve a BMV petition, but also ask BMV to delay one year until 2020-2021 school year to give us all time to establish a good working relationship and get to know each other.

I also had some nice meetings with BMV leaders that seemed to confirm they had the best of intentions. BMV leaders said they were "open" to the idea of a delay, among other points they said they were willing to consider negotiating about with the MVWSD. BMV leaders used the term "collaborative" quite a lot, among many other comforting phrases.

Consequently, I was on-guard and ready to pounce if the MVWSD started to behave badly.
I was all ready to call the MVWSD out in Board meetings to change their ways and play nice with BMV.

THEN at one Board meeting (in the interests of full-disclosure of a long-standing DETAIL of MVWSD enrollment policy that has been in place for over 20 years) Dr. Rudolph mentioned in passing about a RARELY NEEDED policy about applying to ANY choice school and the BMV people went ballistic!
(or were they celebrating? Hard to tell.)

BMV instantly accused the MVWSD of quickly instituting a new sabotage policy specifically designed to torpedo BMV. No amount of explanations of the RARELY NEEDED policy, or how it was decades old, or that ALL of the parents in the MVWSD already knew about it and that it was NEVER controversial, etc... NOTHING anyone tried to calm down the BMV leaders was even acknowledged by the BMV leadership.

BMV had found their excuse to play the "victim card" and they were not listening anymore to anyone about anything. And I really tried personally to get them to understand how this decades old policy was irrelevant to BMV, just as it had always been irrelevant to PACT and Dual-Immersion. They were not listening and were not answering any questions about anything.

Since then...
I have carefully watched and listened to the BMV leadership at Board meetings, read their documents, letters and press releases.
I have heard the way they speak AT THE Board and Dr. Rudolph, observed their NON-answers to pretty much all legitimate MVWSD questions.

I heard nothing at the time from the BMV leadership objecting to the details published in the advanced notice (about 4 days advanced notice) about the conditions the MVWSD wanted as part of the petition approval.
I have seen how the BMV leadership sat by without objections back on Dec 20th when the MVWSD approved the BMV petition with the conditions the BMV leadership knew about in advance. BMV leaders all seemed at least content, not thrilled of course, but not outraged either, when they left the Dec 20th Board Meeting.

Months later, when the MVWSD Board asked the BMV leadership to come to a Board meeting to give a presentation on the status of BMV efforts to comply with the MVWSD conditions, I saw the BMV leader give a canned marketing speech and then flatly reject every one of the MVWSD conditions.

To make themselves look even more foolish and dishonest, BMV ACCUSED the MVWSD for deliberately scheduling a Board meeting on the same night as the BMV lottery and blamed that for the BMV decision NOT to run their lottery as scheduled. Given the BMV "presentation" as delivered, I would have to assume it took them all of 20 min to write it, so no legitimate excuse for not running their lottery. BMV was just playing victim again.

For those who don't know, MVWSD Board meetings are scheduled by the start of each school year and are NOT called by surprise to undermine the BMV.

What an ego the BMV leadership must have to assume the MVWSD would intentionally set a Board meeting based on trying to mess with BMV.

As has been mentioned by those who are deeply familiar with BCS have stated for years, Bullis is a one-trick pony that relies on playing the victim while actually acting as a bully because they know Prop 39 and Santa Clara County gives Bullis all the power and lets them get away with anything.

I have to assume their school mascot will be the "Bullis Bullies".
I wonder what school colors they will choose when they finally force their way into Mountain View?

The behavior of the BMV leadership alone will be enough to scare away pretty much every low-income family in the district (not that BMV was ever going to get more than a few such families to begin with).


3 people like this
Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 22, 2019 at 12:42 pm

ST parent is a registered user.

@Ummm

@ A BCS Parent

"If there is no "name and shame" at BCS regarding donations,..."

"I have heard about BCS literally posting lists next to classroom doors showing who has donated and who hasn't."

I have heard this from 3 different BCS families, (I independently confirmed they were indeed BCS families.)
I met 2 of them at MVWSD Board meetings and one at a girls softball event.

I know the donations at Stevenson are strictly confidential and only the PACT treasurer has access to the list with names. The only info anyone else has is a simple percentage number published about what percentage of families have donated some amount, even $1 counts as "participation". Even then, we typically only have 70-80% participation.

I asked a BCS official about this and asked a couple BCS parents to take a picture and share it. I will let you know if someone provides me with a photo or a copy of the list.

Until then, I honestly don't know if this is real or not, but I didn't feel the BCS parents who told me about it were lying at all.

I would hope that critics of BCS and BMV would use only facts to criticize BCS/BMV, but since both BCS and BMV are clearly skilled in playing fast and loose with the truth, I cannot entirely blame their critics for using what ammo they can find.


7 people like this
Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 22, 2019 at 1:03 pm

ST parent is a registered user.

@A BCS Parent

Glad to see you admit that public perception impacts the low-income families the most. That is one of my major points.

"A lot of misinformation in this thread,"

OK, then lets address some of them directly.

"BCS does not and cannot pick and choose its students."

For BCS, I assume this lottery process is an open process with LASD oversight and public auditing to assure BCS is following the laws and their promises?

ALSO, why did BMV come in with a list of enrollment priorities that placed Free/Reduced Lunch Programs students as third-class BELOW non-FRLP-siblings and BELOW BMV founders/staff/Board members????? The BMV priorities are designed to limit FRLP kids to only those families who are early-adopters and willing to take a risk on BMV the first year. After the first year, the priority for non-FRLP-siblings will exclude most FRLP families in the future.

BMV came in making a huge deal of their core mission to provide a BETTER education for as many FRPL kids as possible and yet they have done everything to discourage those exact families from applying to BMV.

Just FYI, FRLP status and residency address are the ONLY demographic factors any public school can use to determine enrollment priorities. Other things like priority for staff kids are allowed.

"Because there are more applications than seats there is a random lottery with government-approved non-discriminatory priorities. You can bet that the haters watch this like a hawk and will immediately pounce if there are any factual irregularities."

That ASSUMES the process is OPEN to public verification, is it?
If not, you just lied.

"The families who would benefit the most from BCS's programs (the disadvantaged ones) get the impression that they aren't welcome."

How do you think the FRLP families of MVWSD feel about BMV as a direct result of the behavior of the BMV leadership?

"Because of lies from BCS's opponents!"

NO, because of the chosen BEHAVIOR of the BCS and BMV leadership!


7 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2019 at 1:34 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

The comments on here bring up all sorts of suspect facts with nothing to back them up. A lot of this sounds like an attack on a charter school such as that made by the determined band of people from Marin County. They don't know the local area or the dichotomy between LASD and MVWSD. I want to provide a few facts about LASD because even some of the MVWSD people may not appreciate them. First of all, MVWSD is better funded than is LASD. They get by with a miniscule parcel tax. Last has about $900 per parcel as its parcel tax. They put out fundraising literature disguised as reports from the district to demonstrate how much they need the parcel tax money. Still it only raises $10 Million per year. With that increment LASD still falls behind MVWSD in public revenue going to support the schools. it HEAVILY relies on fundraising. MVWSD struggles to raise $600K per year from parents. Hah!

LASD raises from its parents $3 Million every year. Also, the PTA's fundraise separately and in many schools they raise $500 per child. So if you believe PTA money helps, LASD benefits from another $2 Million per year in fundraising. All this stuff about shaming non donators would apply to all of LASD, because the work quite hard to raise $5 Million in donations every year. I have seen fundraising notes at LASD (not BCS) which say "donate now so we don't have to call you." That's not shaming but it's something. So we are talking about a district which needs $10 Million of parcel tax and $5 Million in charity to operate with slightly less funding per student than MVWSD.


8 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2019 at 1:44 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

About Bullis Charter School. It has broad-based support. It enrolls 925 students this year and has enrolled over 1200 for next year. The other schools in LASD only have 4200 students this year, and next year they project to drop to around 3800. There are more people eager to send kids to BCS, but there aren't enough slots.

Is that Bullying? Sure, a school that is over twice as big as any district school has some clout. Shouldn't it?
And there are 2000 or so parents of students from this year or next, plus a lot of parents from 15 years of operation. That's a lot of voters. The district split them across 3 sites for next year. So in a way they operate 3 schools. MVWSD has schools with 2 sharing one site. in LASD each site is 10 acres, or 20 acres for the Junior High's (which only serve grades 7 and 8, not 6). So BCS is split across both Junior High sites and one elementary site which has a lot of empty room. It even leases out space for a private preschool on that same site, bringing in more revenue to LASD.


6 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2019 at 2:52 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

One more factoid for the Marin County folks: LASD and MVWSD are two halves of the same high school district. All the kids get mixed together in high school. LASD has 6% low income, so similar to Ross Valley pretty well off. MVWSD has a 34% low income student population, so 7 times higher than LASD. That's the big difference, plus the source of the funding for LASD is different as outlined above. Both spend the same amount of money per student, even though MVWSD has an extra need from the low income population.


19 people like this
Posted by Grew Up Here
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 22, 2019 at 6:46 pm

Grew Up Here is a registered user.

I can assure you that I am from here, not Marin. I don't even fully understand the reference to Marin. Why would people from Marin spend time on the MV Voice website?

As for being anti-charter, personally I am not. In fact up until the BMV charter, I hadn't thought much about Bullis. I have heard great things about the school. I know families who are very enthusiastic about it, and it sounds like a great school. I had heard of the LASD disputes and rumors about Bullis admissions, but it wasn't something I knew a lot about. In general, I have been pro-choice in education for a long time. I thought (and still do think) that charters can be wonderful.

But I followed this closely, and BMV's own behavior was deeply disappointing to me. I read the charter petition, but when I watched the presentation to the board, it didn't seem to me like BMV had any real interest in fulfilling what they wrote in their own charter petition. I watched as they barely made any real efforts to reach the SEL community and families. Did they, for instance, regularly provide translators at their meetings? Did they make any real effort at outreach other than a few half-hearted coffees and a few afternoons standing outside of Castro? Did they take the time necessary to build trust and relationships? Personally, I didn't see work that showed genuine effort or concern on the part of BMV.

Then BMV went on to object to every effort the Board made to hold BMV to what BMV claimed were its goals. At that point, it became hard for me, at least, to support BMV. I feel like I went into learning about BMV with an open mind, but it became sadly clear that the school didn't have any true intentions of doing what it claimed in its charter petition. All in all, I think it is really unfortunate.


2 people like this
Posted by Politics
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 23, 2019 at 12:45 am

Politics is a registered user.

In retrospect it looks like BMV advertising a demographic goal wasn't a good chess move, first because they don't control the main variables affecting demographics, and second because MVWSD turned it into a great political weapon.

MVWSD effectively played the card, "You said it, so make your numbers or else we'll shut you down!" This put BMV into a no-win situation. If they had accepted the condition they would have risked the school's existence over demographics. By refusing the condition they opened themselves to criticism that they didn't really intend to meet their demographic goal.

To make their goal BMV needs a location near FRPL families. If BMV had accepted the condition, MVWSD would have had them over a barrel. MVWSD controls facilities and has full power to place BMV sooner or later at a location (e.g. Huff) where they'd fall short of their goal. Game over.


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Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 23, 2019 at 11:10 am

ST parent is a registered user.

@ResidentSince1982

WOW Resident, you really don't know what you're talking about do you?????

"One more factoid for the Marin County folks:"

Whomever you're talking at, if you're going to call it a "factoid" you might want to actually tell a true fact and CHECK if it's actually true BEFORE you post it!

"LASD and MVWSD are two halves of the same high school district."

TOTALLY FALSE!!!!!

The MVWSD has ZERO involvement with the high school district, which is known as:

MVLASD or The Mountain View-Los Altos School District.

The MVLASD is it's own elected Board and is totally independent from either the MVWSD or LASD Elementary School Districts.

MVWSD and LASD each run a K-8 set of schools.

The MVLASD runs Mountain View High School and Los Altos High School.

"All the kids get mixed together in high school."

Not quite true either. SOME kids from the MVWSD go on to attend Los Altos High School, but ONLY those who live on the west side of Shoreline Blvd. The rest of the MVWSD kids go to Mountain View High School. The Los Altos High School is mostly made up of Los Altos kids.

Again, Resident, you are deeply clueless and only have a few details correct in some of your posts and lots of outright FAKE NEWS for most of what you claim.


1 person likes this
Posted by SRB
a resident of St. Francis Acres
on Mar 23, 2019 at 11:32 am

SRB is a registered user.

@ST Parent

"The Los Altos High School is mostly made up of Los Altos kids."

I think you meant to write ??

"The Los Altos High School is mostly made up of Los Altos School District kids."

b/c LAHS is split pretty evenly between Mountain View and Los Altos residents and its attendance area includes all the Mountain View neighborhoods in the Los Altos School District.


3 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1892
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 23, 2019 at 11:34 am

ResidentSince1892 is a registered user.

As has been pointed out here many times before, charters are fundamentally about sorting students into cliques and tranches in dubious ways based on ‘market’ (read: parent) demand. That this BMV thing blew up over enrollment preferences and guarantees should surprise no one. It’s very hard to demonstrate a charter’s ‘innovation’ and ‘educational value add’ without intentional manipulation of the student body composition


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Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 23, 2019 at 11:38 am

ST parent is a registered user.

@ResidentSince1982

Hey Resident, you should really change your handle to Mr. Irony!
Clearly you know nothing about Mountain View, much like the leadership of the BMV seems to be clueless about Mountain View.

"The comments on here bring up all sorts of suspect facts with nothing to back them up."

WOW, Mr. Irony, we don't "suspect", we KNOW your "facts" are mostly FALSE in relation to MVWSD!

"A lot of this sounds like an attack on a charter school such as that made by the determined band of people from Marin County."

We don't need Marin County to tell us that the BMV leadership has behaved terribly and mainly worked to alienate all of the families of the MVWSD especially the low-income families!

I actually tried to get BMV and MVWSD to work together to make BMV welcome and have a productive relationship. It has been the BMV leadership that created these problems. And they didn't need to.

"They don't know the local area or the dichotomy between LASD and MVWSD."

WOW, Mr. Irony strikes again, YOU don't have a clue about the MVWSD.

"I want to provide a few facts about LASD because even some of the MVWSD people may not appreciate them."

So, exactly WHERE do you plan on getting "facts" to provide?
You will have to go find them first.

"First of all, MVWSD is better funded than is LASD."

WHERE do you get that idea?????
LASD has vastly more funding than LASD has and MVWSD has to constantly struggle to find the money we need. If you mean the MVWSD is better at managing it's money than the LASD does, well, the MVWSD credit rating would support that idea.

"They get by with a miniscule parcel tax."

Yes, MVWSD has a $196 parcel tax and we get some money from developers fees, but it's all carefully managed to make the most of what we get.
If the LASD is wasteful, that's a different issue. We also get donations, but not remotely as much as LASD.

"Last has about $900 per parcel as its parcel tax."

See, again you seem to be well informed about Los Altos, but know very little about MVWSD. Are you sure you're not a BMV leadership person?

"With that increment LASD still falls behind MVWSD in public revenue going to support the schools. it HEAVILY relies on fundraising."

ALL school districts I know of rely heavily on donations.

"MVWSD struggles to raise $600K per year from parents. Hah!"

Again, Res, you don't know what you're talking about in the MVWSD.
MVEF alone raises $750,000 per year for the MVWSD kids and ALL the schools have substantial fund-raising success and the district itself raises even more donations.

Your $600k number is just a fraction of the donations to the MVWSD each year.

"LASD raises from its parents $3 Million every year."

Again, you seem to be a Bullis shill who knows nothing about MVWSD, but much about Los Altos. WHY didn't you know that the high schools have their own independent school board?

"All this stuff about shaming non donators would apply to all of LASD,"

NO, nobody I know of has accused the LASD of donation shaming, ONLY BCS has been accused of that.

"I have seen fundraising notes at LASD (not BCS) which say "donate now so we don't have to call you." That's not shaming but it's something."

YES, it's NOT PUBLIC SHAMING because they are NOT threatening to post the names for others to see.

FYI, MANY fund-raising groups use that phrase, including the Mountain View Educational Fund in it's ads. However, in all the years we have been in the MVWSD we have NEVER gotten any such phone calls.


3 people like this
Posted by ST parent
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 23, 2019 at 11:42 am

ST parent is a registered user.

@SRB

@ST Parent

"LAHS is split pretty evenly between Mountain View and Los Altos residents and its attendance area includes all the Mountain View neighborhoods in the Los Altos School District."

Thanks for the correction, my child is not yet in middle school, so I am not fully up on the MVLAHS district proportions. I thought I had heard in a MVWSD Board meeting that LAHS had mostly Los Altos kids, but perhaps that was not quite worded correctly.

Again, thanks for the correction.


3 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2019 at 1:26 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

As a side effect of keeping the MVLA high schools balanced with similar numbers of
students from both cities (only if you count the separate city of Los Altos Hills as part of "Los Altos"), it has 2500 students versus Mountain View High only having 2000. This is worth noticing because also Los Altos High School's grounds are 25% smaller than Mountain View High School's grounds.

It is interesting that the 2 cities are about evenly balanced between K-12 students, even though the city of Mountain View is twice as large geographically as is the city of Los Altos. But a good chunk, about 20% of the students living in the city of Los Altos go to the Cupertino Union Elementary School district or the Fremont Union High School district. What this means is that if there are 5300 kids in LASD and 5100 in MVWSD, you have to look at 1050 of the LASD kids being from Mountain View. So MVLA does have more kids from Mountain View than from Los ALtos+Los Altos Hills, as in a 60%/40% split. But then you have to realize that there are another 1400 Los Altos/Hills kids assigned either to PAUSD or Fremont Union/Cupertino Union.

Population-wise Mountain View has over 2 times the population of Los Altos and Los Altos Hills. So way more of the housing in Los Altos seems to be occupied by families with kids, compared to Mountain View where the households are more likely to be non-family groups of unrelated people living together (or single apartment dwellers or childless couples). So a much bigger fraction of voters in MVWSD don't have kids than in LASD. Yet they get presented with a choice of school board candidates and are asked to vote to select who serves.


4 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2019 at 1:43 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

Regarding the issue of Marin County voters hijacking the comments on this and other stories, I think the evidence is fairly clear. Why is a different matter. But they were present at the Board Meeting and did make public comments to the MVWSD trustees. Apparently Ayinde Rudolph is relying on legal advice from a lawyer who has represented Ross Valley Elementary in their persecution of the charter there. Firing up the community builds more chance of business for the lawyer so MAYBE he shared info with the fanatics up there to get them to stir things up here. Somehow different types of people connected to Ross Valley got involved, with a far away issue.

Consider that a fair recent comment in the sequence here was deleted by the moderator. That comment was from a registered user with the handle "Grew up Here" or some such. That guy took issue with observations that Marin County folks were active as well. I think he may have been one of the Marin County sock puppets, as they seem to try to hide the fact they don't live around here, but all I feel certain of is that SOME of the comments are from them. That doesn't mean that they all are. But they don't realize just how great the income imbalance is, within the MVWSD school district. In their area they have 8-10% low income and the charter is serving 30%-35% low income kids. Yet they still object to it as unneeded, and they apply that to the proposed new charter here, where the situation is different.

Also for example, they don't seem to appreciate the difference between LASD and MVWSD, where LASD has 6% low income and MVWSD has 34%. They cite the lack of low income kids at BCS to mean that BMV won't have any either. It's a totally different pool of eligible students.

BMV demonstrated interest from low income students. BMV has had extensive outreach to low income students in MVWSD over a number of years. That's why MVWSD is so afraid of them, not because they won't get low income students, but because they WILL. Anyway they handicap the performance of BMV serves to help keep BMV from doing way better than MVWSD. This includes the idea of attacking the funding for BMV, by this absurd demand that they exclude students needed to fill the 6 classrooms, if they aren't the EXACT mix of low income the district demands. This means the teachers can't be paid, and the whole school falls apart. Attack attack attack. There could be 32% low income kids in the winners of the lottery, and the MVWSD would force BMV to kick out 4% of the winners because they aren't low income. But then that would remove 4% of the funding, which is already way less PER STUDENT than spent in MVWSD. That 4% could be a big problem. Not to mention, if that's the result of applying all the preferences and the school comes out 32% low income and 68% non low income, state law says it's ILLEGAL to discriminate and keep kids out of the school, just because they are not low income, even if it is to make a quota. This is what Ayinde Rudolph has proposed.


3 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2019 at 1:50 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

Just to keep perspective, BMV would be funded with $10,700 PER STUDENT based on a mix of 34% disadvantaged, which means foster child, low income, or ELL. MVWSD spends $15,000 per student. MVWSD has all sorts of revenue sources not to be shared with BMV. So if MVWSD forces BMV to exclude ANY of the students who draw the funding, where they have precisely defined enough slots to fund the needed teachers and other services of the school, then MVWSD is cutting the funding for all of BMV by that amount, and it hurts the services of the school, and is illegal under state charter law. BMV would have followed all the rules and regulations and then MVWSD would have procedures which stepped in and removed students and funding from the classes.

How would ST Parent like it if this happened at Stevenson? Make the teachers there take a pay cut because they weren't serving 34% low income...... Oh, well, that would be a 65% cut there, way worse.


2 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2019 at 2:07 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

Also, I recalculated. If the lottery at BMV let in ALL the low income kids and only got up to 32%, leaving 68% non low income, the cuts would be bigger than I said. They would have to cut 6% of the total winners of the random lottery, which would come ALL from non-low income kids. That would then bring the fraction up to 34% for low income. But the school would get 6% less funding for the defined number of classrooms.


10 people like this
Posted by SRB
a resident of St. Francis Acres
on Mar 23, 2019 at 2:31 pm

SRB is a registered user.

@ResidentSince1982 - a resident from another community

Quick Question

Aren't Marin voters part of "another community" ust like you? Why would their input be any more or less relevant than yours?


24 people like this
Posted by MV
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 23, 2019 at 5:18 pm

MV is a registered user.

I LOVE THIS POST FROM ABOVE. I HAVE BEEN WATCHING AND FOLLOWING THIS WHOLE SAGA AND IT SUMS IT PRETTY WELL IMHO!!

In summary:

BMV: We want to come to MV and do great things for SEL students in MV! Here is our charter where we describe the great things we want to do for MV SEL students! We will be here next year!! Give us space.

MVWSD: Ok. Your charter is approved with requirement that you actually do the things you said you would in in your charter. Here is space for you.

BMV: Wait, what? We didn't actually mean what we wrote! Unfair! You can't make us do the things we said we'd do! (Stomps feet, goes home.)


10 people like this
Posted by Grew Up Here
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 24, 2019 at 9:33 am

Grew Up Here is a registered user.

Resident,

Since you directly referenced me, let me clarify one point: none of my posts have been deleted. I am not sure why you say they have been.

It is indeed possible for a MV resident to watch the behavior of BMV and reach his or her own conclusions about BMV that are not universally positive. Assuming that people here who disagree with BMV's approach must be from Marin is, frankly speaking, irrational and paranoid. As I stated above, I am a long-time MV resident who followed this closely, and I am not anti-charter. I read the petition, I listened to BMV's board meeting comments, and I have read the material BMV published. That is what I have based my conclusions on. If you don't like those conclusions, please look to the sources they are based on for why.


10 people like this
Posted by Los Altos Parent
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2019 at 10:45 am

Los Altos Parent is a registered user.

@Grew Up Here, I feel your frustration as @ResidentSince1982 has been at the comment section for many years in favor of Bullis. I don’t want to out his name, but this same individual also posts on Facebook and Nextdoor, and many assume he is either paid by Bullis or has some sort of financial stake in the school. He often makes no sense and brings up things that have nothing to do with the conversation in order to deflect. His assumptions and conspiracy theories are not uncommon. It isn’t just you, so it helps to just ignore.


3 people like this
Posted by Grew Up Here
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 24, 2019 at 11:30 am

Grew Up Here is a registered user.

@Los Altos Parent Thanks for explaining. That's useful information. I appreciate your post.


3 people like this
Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 24, 2019 at 12:08 pm

Steven Nelson is a registered user.

Ross Valley, Marin County connection. [ a bit more clarity ]
The lawyer advising MVWSD's Administration. It seems it is DWK's Sue Ann Salmon Evans. She was the lawyer advising the Ross Valley SD it it's vote to "not charter" the Ross Valley Charter. [check the Ross Valley Bd. Official Minutes - which are posted]. She was not a parter ("Shareholder") at DWK at that time. (Sue Ann) Salmon Evans also was the lawyer advising Ross Valley in their later fights over school space with the Ross Valley Charter. I, personally, consider that a fight of the type that LASD did with BCS - in my mind, eventually the Charter got a bit more than Ross Valley (under advice) was willing to allot to them. This went to the Appeals Court level. Like the BCS v. LASD legal fight did.

Why in the Heck, did Ross Valley anti-charter people show up in Mountain View? No one here really knows.

I want to make it very clear, it is my opinion that as a "Shareholder" in the for-profit legal firm DWK, the lawyer advising Superintendent Rudolph has a clear fiscal stakeholder interest in how long and how intense the legal fight is - over BMV. It does not seem to me, that she would have a particular interest in a "neutral mediator" approach*. But - that is just me and my own logic!

The DWK lawyer advising Superintendent Rudolph, has a well earned reputation as a hard-on-charters fighter. She has IMO done excellent legal work (and California School Boards Association talks) on the most felonious charter school organizations. She is to be commended IMO on that particular aspect of her legal career.

However - a pit-bull type of lawyer - IMO is not the right type for this community! {the Bullis Mountain View people seem to have switched lawyers to their own 'doberman' fighter. I do not know the particulars of that person}.

Pit-bull v. doberman = What a Dog Fight !!!! We shall see.

It is hard/impossible to get specific current billing in potential litigation cases using the Calif. Public Records Act!

*
DWK "Unlike other education law firms, DWK prides itself on representing only charter authorizers, to ensure that its representation remains consistent with its clients’ needs and is free from influences created by representing charter schools." Bullis Charter School v. Los Altos School District (2012) 200 Cal.App.4th 1022. {DWK provided example}


1 person likes this
Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 24, 2019 at 12:17 pm

Steven Nelson is a registered user.

BTW The County office of education, in Marin County, did charter the Ross Valley Charter.

Thanks So Much: @SRB & Resident Since 1982 & @ST Parent(when you are not 'ranting') about providing comments that are generally quite factual and very well researched. (though - conclusions are just opinion Eh?)

@Cindy Harris of Whisman Station: It is hard to always be clear to others in the public who are not so clear on this;
PUBLIC "charter schools" so no money diversion "from the public school system" because in California, PUBLIC charter schools are a part of "the public school system."


3 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2019 at 12:32 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

It's easy to tell the MVWSD Board and Superintendent are wrong in their overall attitude toward the new charter. The district has a problem with over 80%
low income kids at one school and under 10% at another couple. Immediately leaping to the conclusion that a new charter school will enroll too few low income kids is a blame game they played. It was fed by some input from the public, but they also were leaping to conclusions and playing a blame game. So long as they allow a choice school like Stevenson to end up with such a very low number of low income, when that is under their full control, they have something to answer for. But criticizing the make up of a charter which has not yet started operation is not the way to answer.

Now the county or State will award the charter petition and they'll open. I won't care if they have 20-30% low income versus the district average of 34%. I think that will be closer than any other school. The procedures they used for preferences will remain in place as they were perfectly adequate. Their school will continue with its inclusion of low income year after year. Meanwhile, MVWSD has dropped several percentage points in low income students each year for quite a few years, and that will continue.


9 people like this
Posted by Los Altos Parent
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2019 at 12:59 pm

Los Altos Parent is a registered user.

So, @ResidentSince1982, what do you think about the fact that Bullis leadership is playing the victim card again with yet another district of elected public servants / “demons” for public education? I mean, one big, bad and mean district can happen, but two? And now many throughout CA who are struggling with charters? Do you see a common denominator? And you are right. BMV will indeed appeal to the county, and here it all starts again with another district to demonize with no accountability on the charter. Good times. Fasten your seatbelts, Mountain View. You won’t be able to elect anyone on the BMV board, so all you can do is help your district and write our lawmakers, drive to Sacramento, etc. Again, good times in the name of their profit, not kids.


3 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2019 at 4:55 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

I don't see that the charter school is in any way a victim of MVWSD. The programs between the Bullis Charter in LASD and the Bullis in MVWSD intentionally are tailored differently. Charter schools are not required to target service to low income disadvantaged students, but BMV has voluntarily done so. They weren't FORCED to do this or "victimized" into it. In this case, the only "victims" will be the students of BMV if there is an delay in opening the program. MVWSD initially ASKED for a year delay. BMV was willing to offer such a delay in exchange for cooperation. But MVWSD reversed course and claimed not to be asking for the delay after all. What I see here is worst case, a year delay, which BMV was willing to do in the first place.

It seems like there is a pretty good chance the program will open as planned on schedule next year. There is no requirement to delay opening after a county approval of a rejected petition. What usually would stop this would be failure to allow time for other preparations like conducting a lottery, attracting applicants, etc. This is a situation where MVWSD has aided BMV with the sham approval so that these boxes have been ticked off. If the county board acts now, the school could well open on schedule. So where's the victimization? It's more like facilitation when you think about it, even if done haphazardly with attempted violation of charter enrollment rules.


4 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2019 at 5:00 pm

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

MVWSD should get a better lawyer. They should have known that to force the charter to reject applicants for some of the planned slots and keep them open was an inherent violation of the rules for charter. All slots need to be either filled or open to enrollment by ANY eligible student who lives in the state of California, regardless of where they do reside. By asking for a fixed percentage of low income students, the district was trying to keep slots unfilled. No charter can force attendance by anyone, low income or not. This results in empty slots, and insufficient funding for the planned number of classes. It also interferes with the facilities request and compliance with the forecast used there.

So, yes, they need a better lawyer. This never should have been allowed by MVWSD. The quota deal was a blatant mis-step. Blame the lawyer.


1 person likes this
Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 24, 2019 at 5:25 pm

Steven Nelson is a registered user.

@Resident Since and @ Los Altos Parent. Both you people seems to be moving toward (descending into) a lot of opinion and speculation. It would be very helpful to your arguments/opinions if you could now reference (maybe by links) the particular very specific parts of CA public charter school law that you 'claim' supports your opinion. I'm not that up on it myself - so CDE (California Department of Education), CA statute, or CA case law references would really help us. [because of their bias - for-hire lawyers or Charter School Association or CA School Board Association are IMO less reliable reference sources)

THANKS SO MUCH!
to add a WWW link to your post, just copy the web address to it's own line in your posting


4 people like this
Posted by ResidentSince1982
a resident of another community
on Mar 25, 2019 at 1:01 am

ResidentSince1982 is a registered user.

For some information explaining how charter schools may not discriminate and must admit all interested students up to the planned number of slots, see: Web Link
I'm sure the county Officed of Education staff would have gladly explained this to MVWSD staff had they bothered to consult them before planning these extra limitations on qualifying for some of BMV's slots. All the quota stuff is directly contrary to the regulations.


8 people like this
Posted by Donation Lists
a resident of another community
on Mar 25, 2019 at 10:44 am

Donation Lists is a registered user.

Previous poster is insisting that BCS posts donor lists beside the classrooms at BCS. Do you know how that silly that sounds? The same softball parent who insisted before that softball parents refuse to reveal that their kids go to BCS. I am a softball parent who has a child at BCS. I assure you that donor lists are not displayed beside classrooms at BCS. Just to add, if something is posted beside the classrooms at BCS on portable walls, they blow away within a few days as portable walls are terrible for hanging lists and such.


3 people like this
Posted by ajmoor
a resident of Whisman Station
on Mar 29, 2019 at 11:02 pm

ajmoor is a registered user.

Bullis won't go away and state law unfortunately favors charters, but it feels good to win one round against these bullys. They don't give a whit about our students, they are pushing a political agenda that takes schooling out of the hands of the homeowners who pay the taxes to fund our district. Shame on Bullis and all charters for this.


3 people like this
Posted by ajmoor
a resident of Whisman Station
on Mar 29, 2019 at 11:03 pm

ajmoor is a registered user.

Bullis won't go away and state law unfortunately favors charters, but it feels good to win one round against these bullys. They don't care about our students, they are pushing a political agenda that takes schooling out of the hands of the homeowners who pay the taxes to fund our district. Shame on Bullis and all charters for this.


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