Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Budget cuts for tonight in plain english

So , tonight the board is voting on the final cuts to the "LAST" round of budget cuts. There is going to be a NEXT round of cuts thanks to Sacramento and our new California budget. You can always read the agenda's online at the http://www.mdusd.org/ site. But here is what is being considered for elimination tonight:

Board agendas

17 - Reduce 1 of 2 PM custodians at 3 elementary schools (eliminate 3 positions)
88- Eliminate Director of Maintenance and Operations
89- Shift funding of Asst Director of Student Services/Special Ed to categorical programs
90- Reduce Administrative Services legal budget by $150,000
91- Reduce copy machine budget by $30,000
92- Reduce telephone budget by $30,000
93- Reduce elementary education budget by $10,000
94- Reduce secondary education budget by $20,000
95- Reduce fiscal services contracted services budget by $55,540

Remember they can vote on any other item on the cut list even if it is not included in their agenda

Knowing that many will be worried about losing services at their schools (i.e. custodians) the MDUSD site run by Paul Strange and Gary Eberhart has posted a new topic today - take a look - and get involved today with the parcel tax. You'll see that tonight is just ending the last round of cuts, and the next 8 million is going to devastate us as a district. It will include music, sports, VP's - who knows what's next - library? class size reduction? I don't know , but they are working on their agenda and proposed cut list for the next board meeting on March 3rd, so stay tuned for that bad news. But read up at http://www.mdusd.net/: HOW BAD IS IT?

MDUSD unveils new look for website

Has anyone else noticed the new website at MDUSD? It looks good so far. I also do like how they have the latest board and district news and information right on the front page instead of buried behind several clicks of the mouse.

They even simplified the URL for us. You can now find the MDUSD at http://www.mdusd.org/.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

New Leadership at MDUSD

From the desk of Sue Berg, comes this message today:

For Your Information
An Announcement from the MDUSD Board of Education February 11, 2009

To Members of the Mt.Diablo Unified School District community, At the Mt. Diablo Unified School District Board of Education meeting Tuesday night February 10, President Gary Eberhart announced that pursuant to mutual agreement, the Board has accepted the resignation of Gary McHenry, District Superintendent since 1999. Dick Nicoll, a 30-year veteran of MDUSD and an Assistant Superintendent since 1996, has been named Interim Superintendent. In his announcement, President Eberhart acknowledged Mr. McHenry's lengthy tenure in the District and the many accomplishments which took place during that tenure. He said, "This is a time of change within the District. The District and the community face many new challenges, and the Board believes that new leadership is necessary in order to achieve that change. We now look to the future and building on the successes of the past."

Mr. Nicoll's financial and educational experience will help to assure that the District will be well led while it begins the search for a new Superintendent. Mr. Eberhart said the Governing Board intends to proceed deliberately and carefully in that search, which will involve community input.

Contact Information ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Dr. Richard Nicoll
Interim Superintendent
Mt. Diablo Unified School District
(925) 682-8000, x4009
e-mail to: nicollr@mdusd.k12.ca.us or bergs@mdusd.k12.ca.us

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Superintendent causes stir with his remarks

"Were they just words expressing frustration, or a threat of legal action?"

This is the question asked in today's article in the Times by Theresa Harrington.

Read more by clicking the link or article clip above.

Here's my opinion, in this climate of budget cuts and catastrophe for all schools looming, our Superintendent needs to check his words in public more carefully. We need to come together to solve this together. What he said may well have been in frustration, but it does nothing to bring this community together. Though he did not make a statement to the paper for this article, his assistant Sue Berg does note he's moving forward with the board recommendation. So for lack of a better cliche - can't we all just get along? We need to work together. We're all going to feel the cuts. We need a parcel tax. We need a united front.

If you look on the right side bar over there -------------------> you'll see a feed from "Protect Our Students. Protect Our Schools. Protect Prop 98." They are following education cuts from around the state. We haven't even felt the worst of it yet, look at just a few examples over there, including:

Novato school officials are considering laying off 60 classroom teachers, completely eliminating athletic programs and closing a middle school to save $5.8 million - the amount they fear they’ll lose this year due to state budget cuts.

Wouldn't people rather see a leaner admin before they see teachers and ALL sports cut, not to mention school closures? Look at the MDUSD Budget Reduction list - those things are ALL on there; sports, programs (teachers) and school closures. Let's work together...


MDUSD: Budget Emergency Information

Click to the MDUSD website to view information about the district's budget emergency including links to the budget cut information, state budget information and updates about the parcel tax possibilities.