Superintendent Hammond Says He Doesn’t Want to Close Emerson

After over a hundred people spoke on Monday night at a jam packed Emerson Junior High Multipurpose Room. After the Superintendent and Bruce Colby painstakingly pointed out that that the cuts were real, the crisis was real, changes had to be made. After one by one, the Superintendent and Bruce Colby dispelled notions that they had emergency reserves. After one by one, they discredited any of the possible remedies offered up by the public and school board member alike. After they pointed out that even a new parcel tax would benefit the budget only in 2009.

After all of that school board member Susan Lovenberg asked a very simple but key question of the Superintendent, I’ve heard what we cannot do, what will your recommendation be?

After all of that, the Superintendent before a dwindling audience got up and said, he did not want to close Emerson. He would recommend against it. The remaining audience roared in delight.

Board Member Tim Taylor then said that he needed to see how they were going to make this work fiscally on Thursday night.

Let us step back a second. Back in January, Superintendent James Hammond worked long and hard with the Valley Oak petitioners in an attempt to get the Valley Oak Charter School approved. But he could not convince his board to take a leap of faith.

I met with him a few days after that meeting and he was as genuine as could be. The only thing he regretted was that he didn’t have a few more days to convince the board to take a chance on the Charter School. He believed in it. He was truly remorseful that he was unable to convince the board about it.

I had always liked James Hammond, on that day, I recognized however that Hammond was a man of compassion and principle. So I believe him when he says he does not want to close Emerson Junior High. I guarantee you he believes that and I guarantee you he will find a way to make the numbers work.

The difference between the 4-1 to reject the Valley Oak Charter Petition and a possible vote to keep Emerson over is that it seems that Richard Harris and Susan Lovenburg support keeping Emerson open. Whether they get a third vote is another question. Richard Harris seems to believe it however, he apparently was telling parents not to worry, they would not close Emerson. I am not certain how he could know that for certain given Brown Act restrictions, but at the same time, I may also believe him.

On the other hand, they are going to have to find another $400,000. This is not a situation they can exactly play around with. If they do not get it right, if they do not cut enough, the County will take over the district. This was a point made over and over again last night.

I am all for creative solutions, I am all for keeping Emerson open, and I believe in Superintendent James Hammond, I just want to see the numbers. I am with Tim Taylor, show me how the numbers work and I am all for it. I am all for making it work. Hopefully come Thursday night, we will all believe.

—Doug Paul Davis reporting

Author

  • David Greenwald

    Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

    View all posts

Categories:

Budget/Taxes

131 comments

  1. Every time I see or hear Hammond I am impressed. He is a real leader in this stressful situation. I absolutely disagree with keeping Emerson open, but admire the way he puts himself out front. I had no beef with Murphy until this whole Tahir thing came to light, but under his tenure I noticed so many of the district and board are were interested in covering their own backsides, and making fear based decisions, so Hammond is rather refreshing.
    Perhaps it is because he is an “outsider”, but he hasn’t sem to have fallen prey to the “Davis Way” of being; that is, the seeming sense of entitlement and assumption correctness in all things. I don’t mean this to sound so hostile- I am quite fond of Davis but juast don’t always trust Davis-ites when it comes to self-governance.
    Still, back to Emerson… I just don’t see how the numbers can work. No matter how emotionally appealing the argument to keep Emerson open is, the numbers should dictate the decision or it will not be fair because too many others will suffer as a result of keeping it open.

  2. Every time I see or hear Hammond I am impressed. He is a real leader in this stressful situation. I absolutely disagree with keeping Emerson open, but admire the way he puts himself out front. I had no beef with Murphy until this whole Tahir thing came to light, but under his tenure I noticed so many of the district and board are were interested in covering their own backsides, and making fear based decisions, so Hammond is rather refreshing.
    Perhaps it is because he is an “outsider”, but he hasn’t sem to have fallen prey to the “Davis Way” of being; that is, the seeming sense of entitlement and assumption correctness in all things. I don’t mean this to sound so hostile- I am quite fond of Davis but juast don’t always trust Davis-ites when it comes to self-governance.
    Still, back to Emerson… I just don’t see how the numbers can work. No matter how emotionally appealing the argument to keep Emerson open is, the numbers should dictate the decision or it will not be fair because too many others will suffer as a result of keeping it open.

  3. Every time I see or hear Hammond I am impressed. He is a real leader in this stressful situation. I absolutely disagree with keeping Emerson open, but admire the way he puts himself out front. I had no beef with Murphy until this whole Tahir thing came to light, but under his tenure I noticed so many of the district and board are were interested in covering their own backsides, and making fear based decisions, so Hammond is rather refreshing.
    Perhaps it is because he is an “outsider”, but he hasn’t sem to have fallen prey to the “Davis Way” of being; that is, the seeming sense of entitlement and assumption correctness in all things. I don’t mean this to sound so hostile- I am quite fond of Davis but juast don’t always trust Davis-ites when it comes to self-governance.
    Still, back to Emerson… I just don’t see how the numbers can work. No matter how emotionally appealing the argument to keep Emerson open is, the numbers should dictate the decision or it will not be fair because too many others will suffer as a result of keeping it open.

  4. Every time I see or hear Hammond I am impressed. He is a real leader in this stressful situation. I absolutely disagree with keeping Emerson open, but admire the way he puts himself out front. I had no beef with Murphy until this whole Tahir thing came to light, but under his tenure I noticed so many of the district and board are were interested in covering their own backsides, and making fear based decisions, so Hammond is rather refreshing.
    Perhaps it is because he is an “outsider”, but he hasn’t sem to have fallen prey to the “Davis Way” of being; that is, the seeming sense of entitlement and assumption correctness in all things. I don’t mean this to sound so hostile- I am quite fond of Davis but juast don’t always trust Davis-ites when it comes to self-governance.
    Still, back to Emerson… I just don’t see how the numbers can work. No matter how emotionally appealing the argument to keep Emerson open is, the numbers should dictate the decision or it will not be fair because too many others will suffer as a result of keeping it open.

  5. I attended the meeting last night until midnight. I got there about 9 p.m., so I think I missed a chunk of public comment.

    Based on what I saw, I would qualify DPD’s report. Hammond recommended against any broad reorganization of the secondary system for next year. And I think that’s what more of the later discussion leaned on. I think there is recognition that the current numbers don’t support continuing w/ 3 JH campuses, but trying to come up w/ a change/closing/reorganization w/ in a month is too fast. Emerson is not necessarily off the hook in the long term.

    Tim Taylor clearly is driving discussion towards reorganizing secondary schools next year. His position seems to be that if we know we need to reorganize the secondary very soon to save money, then lets do it this year and start getting our savings early. It was Taylor who first suggested consolidating JH campuses at the March 3 special meeting.

    DPD, I think I already count 2 votes against doing any reorganization for next year, and that doesn’t count Harris. Based on Harris’ public comments, I did not necessarily hear a commitment from him against reorganization.

    Susan Lovenburg’s public comments seem to indicate a position against doing any reorganization next year, as you suggest, DPD.

    Whether the trustees collectively lean toward reorganization next year or not depends largely on what they think the May revise and the economy will be w/ respect to next year’s funding.

    In response to anonymous 6:39, your last summary is good, but larger scale reorganization for next year (and closing Emerson) may result in potential loss of money for the district if they don’t get the reorganization right. It is really too complex a matter to execute on such a short timeline. The district really needs to get this decision right or they will lose enough credibility that any possibility of passing an emergency parcel tax will vanish.

  6. I attended the meeting last night until midnight. I got there about 9 p.m., so I think I missed a chunk of public comment.

    Based on what I saw, I would qualify DPD’s report. Hammond recommended against any broad reorganization of the secondary system for next year. And I think that’s what more of the later discussion leaned on. I think there is recognition that the current numbers don’t support continuing w/ 3 JH campuses, but trying to come up w/ a change/closing/reorganization w/ in a month is too fast. Emerson is not necessarily off the hook in the long term.

    Tim Taylor clearly is driving discussion towards reorganizing secondary schools next year. His position seems to be that if we know we need to reorganize the secondary very soon to save money, then lets do it this year and start getting our savings early. It was Taylor who first suggested consolidating JH campuses at the March 3 special meeting.

    DPD, I think I already count 2 votes against doing any reorganization for next year, and that doesn’t count Harris. Based on Harris’ public comments, I did not necessarily hear a commitment from him against reorganization.

    Susan Lovenburg’s public comments seem to indicate a position against doing any reorganization next year, as you suggest, DPD.

    Whether the trustees collectively lean toward reorganization next year or not depends largely on what they think the May revise and the economy will be w/ respect to next year’s funding.

    In response to anonymous 6:39, your last summary is good, but larger scale reorganization for next year (and closing Emerson) may result in potential loss of money for the district if they don’t get the reorganization right. It is really too complex a matter to execute on such a short timeline. The district really needs to get this decision right or they will lose enough credibility that any possibility of passing an emergency parcel tax will vanish.

  7. I attended the meeting last night until midnight. I got there about 9 p.m., so I think I missed a chunk of public comment.

    Based on what I saw, I would qualify DPD’s report. Hammond recommended against any broad reorganization of the secondary system for next year. And I think that’s what more of the later discussion leaned on. I think there is recognition that the current numbers don’t support continuing w/ 3 JH campuses, but trying to come up w/ a change/closing/reorganization w/ in a month is too fast. Emerson is not necessarily off the hook in the long term.

    Tim Taylor clearly is driving discussion towards reorganizing secondary schools next year. His position seems to be that if we know we need to reorganize the secondary very soon to save money, then lets do it this year and start getting our savings early. It was Taylor who first suggested consolidating JH campuses at the March 3 special meeting.

    DPD, I think I already count 2 votes against doing any reorganization for next year, and that doesn’t count Harris. Based on Harris’ public comments, I did not necessarily hear a commitment from him against reorganization.

    Susan Lovenburg’s public comments seem to indicate a position against doing any reorganization next year, as you suggest, DPD.

    Whether the trustees collectively lean toward reorganization next year or not depends largely on what they think the May revise and the economy will be w/ respect to next year’s funding.

    In response to anonymous 6:39, your last summary is good, but larger scale reorganization for next year (and closing Emerson) may result in potential loss of money for the district if they don’t get the reorganization right. It is really too complex a matter to execute on such a short timeline. The district really needs to get this decision right or they will lose enough credibility that any possibility of passing an emergency parcel tax will vanish.

  8. I attended the meeting last night until midnight. I got there about 9 p.m., so I think I missed a chunk of public comment.

    Based on what I saw, I would qualify DPD’s report. Hammond recommended against any broad reorganization of the secondary system for next year. And I think that’s what more of the later discussion leaned on. I think there is recognition that the current numbers don’t support continuing w/ 3 JH campuses, but trying to come up w/ a change/closing/reorganization w/ in a month is too fast. Emerson is not necessarily off the hook in the long term.

    Tim Taylor clearly is driving discussion towards reorganizing secondary schools next year. His position seems to be that if we know we need to reorganize the secondary very soon to save money, then lets do it this year and start getting our savings early. It was Taylor who first suggested consolidating JH campuses at the March 3 special meeting.

    DPD, I think I already count 2 votes against doing any reorganization for next year, and that doesn’t count Harris. Based on Harris’ public comments, I did not necessarily hear a commitment from him against reorganization.

    Susan Lovenburg’s public comments seem to indicate a position against doing any reorganization next year, as you suggest, DPD.

    Whether the trustees collectively lean toward reorganization next year or not depends largely on what they think the May revise and the economy will be w/ respect to next year’s funding.

    In response to anonymous 6:39, your last summary is good, but larger scale reorganization for next year (and closing Emerson) may result in potential loss of money for the district if they don’t get the reorganization right. It is really too complex a matter to execute on such a short timeline. The district really needs to get this decision right or they will lose enough credibility that any possibility of passing an emergency parcel tax will vanish.

  9. I was somewhat heartened by the recent mention of making Harper a 4 year high school and keeping Emerson and Holmes as 2 years junior highs. I always thought that is what they should have done in the first place. They could move Da Vinci to Harper instead of to Emerson. If moving Da vinci to Emerson was ever considered, why not put them at Harper and also add regular high school students as well. Davis High is way too big.

    Anonymous, I really appreciate your insight about the “Davis Way”. Building Korematsu because people in Mace Ranch were ‘promised’ they would have a school there when they bought their homes, and yet ignoring the huge public outcry to save Valley Oak proves that the developers and their promises get a weighted vote. The school district really needs to make sure that when people buy new homes and there is land set aside for a school, that the buyers know that a school may never built, as happened with the Grande property.

    Maybe having the county take over our school district is not such a bad idea after all.

    P.S. DPD, maybe you could number these posts so when people post anonymously, we can respond to Anonymous #1 for example.

  10. I was somewhat heartened by the recent mention of making Harper a 4 year high school and keeping Emerson and Holmes as 2 years junior highs. I always thought that is what they should have done in the first place. They could move Da Vinci to Harper instead of to Emerson. If moving Da vinci to Emerson was ever considered, why not put them at Harper and also add regular high school students as well. Davis High is way too big.

    Anonymous, I really appreciate your insight about the “Davis Way”. Building Korematsu because people in Mace Ranch were ‘promised’ they would have a school there when they bought their homes, and yet ignoring the huge public outcry to save Valley Oak proves that the developers and their promises get a weighted vote. The school district really needs to make sure that when people buy new homes and there is land set aside for a school, that the buyers know that a school may never built, as happened with the Grande property.

    Maybe having the county take over our school district is not such a bad idea after all.

    P.S. DPD, maybe you could number these posts so when people post anonymously, we can respond to Anonymous #1 for example.

  11. I was somewhat heartened by the recent mention of making Harper a 4 year high school and keeping Emerson and Holmes as 2 years junior highs. I always thought that is what they should have done in the first place. They could move Da Vinci to Harper instead of to Emerson. If moving Da vinci to Emerson was ever considered, why not put them at Harper and also add regular high school students as well. Davis High is way too big.

    Anonymous, I really appreciate your insight about the “Davis Way”. Building Korematsu because people in Mace Ranch were ‘promised’ they would have a school there when they bought their homes, and yet ignoring the huge public outcry to save Valley Oak proves that the developers and their promises get a weighted vote. The school district really needs to make sure that when people buy new homes and there is land set aside for a school, that the buyers know that a school may never built, as happened with the Grande property.

    Maybe having the county take over our school district is not such a bad idea after all.

    P.S. DPD, maybe you could number these posts so when people post anonymously, we can respond to Anonymous #1 for example.

  12. I was somewhat heartened by the recent mention of making Harper a 4 year high school and keeping Emerson and Holmes as 2 years junior highs. I always thought that is what they should have done in the first place. They could move Da Vinci to Harper instead of to Emerson. If moving Da vinci to Emerson was ever considered, why not put them at Harper and also add regular high school students as well. Davis High is way too big.

    Anonymous, I really appreciate your insight about the “Davis Way”. Building Korematsu because people in Mace Ranch were ‘promised’ they would have a school there when they bought their homes, and yet ignoring the huge public outcry to save Valley Oak proves that the developers and their promises get a weighted vote. The school district really needs to make sure that when people buy new homes and there is land set aside for a school, that the buyers know that a school may never built, as happened with the Grande property.

    Maybe having the county take over our school district is not such a bad idea after all.

    P.S. DPD, maybe you could number these posts so when people post anonymously, we can respond to Anonymous #1 for example.

  13. We are facing a budget issue- but a some people are using the pretext of the budget to make changes to the structure of the Davis educational program with no discernible financial benefits. The shift to a four-year high school and whichever arrangement of Junior high schools isn’t solving the problem- it is simply using the smokescreen of the budget to make changes already desired by some.

    The most obvious solution to our immediate problem is to simply fill the $4M budget shortfall. This actually isn’t that difficult to do. The result would be no lay-offs, and no fooling around with long-established schools, classes and educational plans. I have looked at our problem as a businessman, not an educator, but here is a possible solution to our budget issue:

    1. The current proposal is laying-off over 112 people with about 100 of these being teachers from the school system.
    2. A typical teacher is assumed to teach over 25 students (in some cases I know they teach significantly more)
    3. This means that under the current scenario we have 2,500 excess seats in the school system (100 x 25). It isn’t that neat and orderly, but there are extra seats throughout the system. There are empty classrooms, partially filled classes and entire campuses that the district sees as surplus. From a business perspective, we have what is known as “excess capacity”. One way of solving this is to see it as a problem and fire people. The other way to look at it is an opportunity to let some new students take advantage of our school system.
    4. For each transfer student who came and filled one of those 2,500 empty seats, Davis schools would receive $5,781. If 691 students transfered into our school district, we would receive $4M with no discernible additional cost. If we filled all of the seats, we would receive $14.5M…
    5. According to Pam Mari, the Director of Student Services for the district, in 2006-07 there were 90 student transfers into our district. This current year there are 147 coming in and 8 going out. This is done in spite of the widely held belief that there is “no room” in Davis schools. Adding an additional 691 students would have an impact on class sizes, retention and promotion rates etc., but faced with the choice of being laid-off or being flexible about classes, wouldn’t some of the instructors help make sure that this new group of students could be accommodated?
    6. The greatest asset newcomers to Davis come looking for is our schools. It is the selling point for many buyers of Davis real estate.
    7. So this begs the question- given the fact that people want the best possible education for their children and we have an excellent, highly-desirable program, why are we dismantling it rather than let some additional students receive its benefits and keep it afloat at the same time?
    8. UC Davis is having a dreadful time attracting good instructors and staff who can afford to live in Davis, not all of the 30,000 employees can live here. The city has the same problem for teachers, firefighters and police. There are a lot of people who make this community thrive, but can’t afford to have their own children attend the schools here. Why not give them the opportunity?
    9. Why not promote Davis schools to 691 parents who work at the University or in town and have them transfer their students from out of the area. In some places, like West Sacramento and Woodland, some schools are far more crowded than in Davis and the test scores languish.

    I have requested a meeting with Dr. Hammond and Pam Mari to discuss this proposal. I have offered to pay for an outside educational consultant to review the school’s staffing levels to determine exactly where we have “extra” seats so they can be made available.

  14. We are facing a budget issue- but a some people are using the pretext of the budget to make changes to the structure of the Davis educational program with no discernible financial benefits. The shift to a four-year high school and whichever arrangement of Junior high schools isn’t solving the problem- it is simply using the smokescreen of the budget to make changes already desired by some.

    The most obvious solution to our immediate problem is to simply fill the $4M budget shortfall. This actually isn’t that difficult to do. The result would be no lay-offs, and no fooling around with long-established schools, classes and educational plans. I have looked at our problem as a businessman, not an educator, but here is a possible solution to our budget issue:

    1. The current proposal is laying-off over 112 people with about 100 of these being teachers from the school system.
    2. A typical teacher is assumed to teach over 25 students (in some cases I know they teach significantly more)
    3. This means that under the current scenario we have 2,500 excess seats in the school system (100 x 25). It isn’t that neat and orderly, but there are extra seats throughout the system. There are empty classrooms, partially filled classes and entire campuses that the district sees as surplus. From a business perspective, we have what is known as “excess capacity”. One way of solving this is to see it as a problem and fire people. The other way to look at it is an opportunity to let some new students take advantage of our school system.
    4. For each transfer student who came and filled one of those 2,500 empty seats, Davis schools would receive $5,781. If 691 students transfered into our school district, we would receive $4M with no discernible additional cost. If we filled all of the seats, we would receive $14.5M…
    5. According to Pam Mari, the Director of Student Services for the district, in 2006-07 there were 90 student transfers into our district. This current year there are 147 coming in and 8 going out. This is done in spite of the widely held belief that there is “no room” in Davis schools. Adding an additional 691 students would have an impact on class sizes, retention and promotion rates etc., but faced with the choice of being laid-off or being flexible about classes, wouldn’t some of the instructors help make sure that this new group of students could be accommodated?
    6. The greatest asset newcomers to Davis come looking for is our schools. It is the selling point for many buyers of Davis real estate.
    7. So this begs the question- given the fact that people want the best possible education for their children and we have an excellent, highly-desirable program, why are we dismantling it rather than let some additional students receive its benefits and keep it afloat at the same time?
    8. UC Davis is having a dreadful time attracting good instructors and staff who can afford to live in Davis, not all of the 30,000 employees can live here. The city has the same problem for teachers, firefighters and police. There are a lot of people who make this community thrive, but can’t afford to have their own children attend the schools here. Why not give them the opportunity?
    9. Why not promote Davis schools to 691 parents who work at the University or in town and have them transfer their students from out of the area. In some places, like West Sacramento and Woodland, some schools are far more crowded than in Davis and the test scores languish.

    I have requested a meeting with Dr. Hammond and Pam Mari to discuss this proposal. I have offered to pay for an outside educational consultant to review the school’s staffing levels to determine exactly where we have “extra” seats so they can be made available.

  15. We are facing a budget issue- but a some people are using the pretext of the budget to make changes to the structure of the Davis educational program with no discernible financial benefits. The shift to a four-year high school and whichever arrangement of Junior high schools isn’t solving the problem- it is simply using the smokescreen of the budget to make changes already desired by some.

    The most obvious solution to our immediate problem is to simply fill the $4M budget shortfall. This actually isn’t that difficult to do. The result would be no lay-offs, and no fooling around with long-established schools, classes and educational plans. I have looked at our problem as a businessman, not an educator, but here is a possible solution to our budget issue:

    1. The current proposal is laying-off over 112 people with about 100 of these being teachers from the school system.
    2. A typical teacher is assumed to teach over 25 students (in some cases I know they teach significantly more)
    3. This means that under the current scenario we have 2,500 excess seats in the school system (100 x 25). It isn’t that neat and orderly, but there are extra seats throughout the system. There are empty classrooms, partially filled classes and entire campuses that the district sees as surplus. From a business perspective, we have what is known as “excess capacity”. One way of solving this is to see it as a problem and fire people. The other way to look at it is an opportunity to let some new students take advantage of our school system.
    4. For each transfer student who came and filled one of those 2,500 empty seats, Davis schools would receive $5,781. If 691 students transfered into our school district, we would receive $4M with no discernible additional cost. If we filled all of the seats, we would receive $14.5M…
    5. According to Pam Mari, the Director of Student Services for the district, in 2006-07 there were 90 student transfers into our district. This current year there are 147 coming in and 8 going out. This is done in spite of the widely held belief that there is “no room” in Davis schools. Adding an additional 691 students would have an impact on class sizes, retention and promotion rates etc., but faced with the choice of being laid-off or being flexible about classes, wouldn’t some of the instructors help make sure that this new group of students could be accommodated?
    6. The greatest asset newcomers to Davis come looking for is our schools. It is the selling point for many buyers of Davis real estate.
    7. So this begs the question- given the fact that people want the best possible education for their children and we have an excellent, highly-desirable program, why are we dismantling it rather than let some additional students receive its benefits and keep it afloat at the same time?
    8. UC Davis is having a dreadful time attracting good instructors and staff who can afford to live in Davis, not all of the 30,000 employees can live here. The city has the same problem for teachers, firefighters and police. There are a lot of people who make this community thrive, but can’t afford to have their own children attend the schools here. Why not give them the opportunity?
    9. Why not promote Davis schools to 691 parents who work at the University or in town and have them transfer their students from out of the area. In some places, like West Sacramento and Woodland, some schools are far more crowded than in Davis and the test scores languish.

    I have requested a meeting with Dr. Hammond and Pam Mari to discuss this proposal. I have offered to pay for an outside educational consultant to review the school’s staffing levels to determine exactly where we have “extra” seats so they can be made available.

  16. We are facing a budget issue- but a some people are using the pretext of the budget to make changes to the structure of the Davis educational program with no discernible financial benefits. The shift to a four-year high school and whichever arrangement of Junior high schools isn’t solving the problem- it is simply using the smokescreen of the budget to make changes already desired by some.

    The most obvious solution to our immediate problem is to simply fill the $4M budget shortfall. This actually isn’t that difficult to do. The result would be no lay-offs, and no fooling around with long-established schools, classes and educational plans. I have looked at our problem as a businessman, not an educator, but here is a possible solution to our budget issue:

    1. The current proposal is laying-off over 112 people with about 100 of these being teachers from the school system.
    2. A typical teacher is assumed to teach over 25 students (in some cases I know they teach significantly more)
    3. This means that under the current scenario we have 2,500 excess seats in the school system (100 x 25). It isn’t that neat and orderly, but there are extra seats throughout the system. There are empty classrooms, partially filled classes and entire campuses that the district sees as surplus. From a business perspective, we have what is known as “excess capacity”. One way of solving this is to see it as a problem and fire people. The other way to look at it is an opportunity to let some new students take advantage of our school system.
    4. For each transfer student who came and filled one of those 2,500 empty seats, Davis schools would receive $5,781. If 691 students transfered into our school district, we would receive $4M with no discernible additional cost. If we filled all of the seats, we would receive $14.5M…
    5. According to Pam Mari, the Director of Student Services for the district, in 2006-07 there were 90 student transfers into our district. This current year there are 147 coming in and 8 going out. This is done in spite of the widely held belief that there is “no room” in Davis schools. Adding an additional 691 students would have an impact on class sizes, retention and promotion rates etc., but faced with the choice of being laid-off or being flexible about classes, wouldn’t some of the instructors help make sure that this new group of students could be accommodated?
    6. The greatest asset newcomers to Davis come looking for is our schools. It is the selling point for many buyers of Davis real estate.
    7. So this begs the question- given the fact that people want the best possible education for their children and we have an excellent, highly-desirable program, why are we dismantling it rather than let some additional students receive its benefits and keep it afloat at the same time?
    8. UC Davis is having a dreadful time attracting good instructors and staff who can afford to live in Davis, not all of the 30,000 employees can live here. The city has the same problem for teachers, firefighters and police. There are a lot of people who make this community thrive, but can’t afford to have their own children attend the schools here. Why not give them the opportunity?
    9. Why not promote Davis schools to 691 parents who work at the University or in town and have them transfer their students from out of the area. In some places, like West Sacramento and Woodland, some schools are far more crowded than in Davis and the test scores languish.

    I have requested a meeting with Dr. Hammond and Pam Mari to discuss this proposal. I have offered to pay for an outside educational consultant to review the school’s staffing levels to determine exactly where we have “extra” seats so they can be made available.

  17. The State legislature will be making additional cuts in next year’s budget. There are some monies to backfill the education budget for this year only but NONE for next year’s budget. The School Board cannot look for more money(perhaps even less) than the cuts that are being talked about now. Additional tax revenues appear to be the only path and “whose ox is gored”; the upcoming legislative budget process looks to be a real struggle..

  18. The State legislature will be making additional cuts in next year’s budget. There are some monies to backfill the education budget for this year only but NONE for next year’s budget. The School Board cannot look for more money(perhaps even less) than the cuts that are being talked about now. Additional tax revenues appear to be the only path and “whose ox is gored”; the upcoming legislative budget process looks to be a real struggle..

  19. The State legislature will be making additional cuts in next year’s budget. There are some monies to backfill the education budget for this year only but NONE for next year’s budget. The School Board cannot look for more money(perhaps even less) than the cuts that are being talked about now. Additional tax revenues appear to be the only path and “whose ox is gored”; the upcoming legislative budget process looks to be a real struggle..

  20. The State legislature will be making additional cuts in next year’s budget. There are some monies to backfill the education budget for this year only but NONE for next year’s budget. The School Board cannot look for more money(perhaps even less) than the cuts that are being talked about now. Additional tax revenues appear to be the only path and “whose ox is gored”; the upcoming legislative budget process looks to be a real struggle..