Possible Westergard Re-Zoning – UPDATE – April 10, 2013

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Apr 12, 2013 2 Comments ›› aiazzidowntown20

  I went on a tour of Westergard on Wednesday, April 10th with Kristen McNeill & JoEtta Gonzales. Kristen is the Chief of Staff and JoEtta is the Area Superintendent. WE had the whole building to ourselves (spring break) except the working who were busy on the single-entry upgrades.

It was very interesting and a few things came out;

The chart I received before regarding the number of “Team Taught” classrooms is now obsolete. Currently there are six. One class changed in January with the portable installed in December. The other is semantics. In one class there are two teacher that work on different days. One teacher works three days of one week and the other works two days that week. They then alternate weeks. I believe there are less than 28 children in that class.

This doesn’t solve the problem but it makes it easier.

After the tour we sat down and discussed possibilities, whether temporary or permanent.

I am going to use the term “we” here a lot as it was a broad discussion and I don’t want to get anyone in trouble for just tossing out ideas. We discussed how much room was left in Verdi and Melton. There is a possibility that there could be three classrooms total available in those two schools. We then discussed the problems associated with a “quick” rezoning and also how much time it may take to request volunteers to move their children for one year to one of these schools.

Then came the idea of beginning a Gifted & Talented Program at Melton. Many of the children at Westergard have been tested (we didn’t have the access to the information on Wednesday as to how many have been tested. The feeling was that there might be enough to qualify for that program, which would be a wonderful, new program,

So on the whiteboard we came up with these tasks:

What would be the transportation costs of implementing this program?
Would testing have an additional cost?What is the status of testing the children at Westergard?The GT Program would be voluntary if the child was qualified.We would call parents whose children have been tested and qualified for a GT Program beforethe meeting on April 23rd to see what their thoughts are.One room would be converted at Westergard into another first grade class. It looks as though this particular room wasa larger room and had a wall built later to divide it in two so it shouldn’t be difficult to remove it, but we still need to establish a cost.The preliminary thoughts being (with NO information available to us at that time) was that this might eliminate threeof the remaining six “team taught” classes at Westergard.It was also proposed that the School Board give staff direction to start a more comprehensive, long term re-zoning process for elementary schools in the Northwest.Whether this is the solution or not, I wanted to thank the parents for bringing this problem to the School Board.

I’d also like to recognize School District Staff for being innovative, responsive and open to suggestions.

 

-dave

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Comments

  1. Stephanie says:

    Mr. Aiazzi:
    It would be great to see you at tonight’s rezoning meeting that involves 3 of the elementary schools in your district (Tonight being Wednesday, February 12th at 6pm at Melton). We haven’t seen you at any of the previous meetings. I would think it would be beneficial for the trustee who represents our area to hear the concerns of the parents and representatives prior to any proposal coming to the board.

    Even with the GT program that was rolled out this school year, there is still an overcrowding issue at Westergard.

    Hope to see you there tonight representing your schools and constituents.

    • DaveAiazzi says:

      I apologize Stephanie, I didn’t know about these meetings. I have put a call in to the principal and have asked for an update on previous meetings. I have also asked that any future meetings be put on my calendar. If you have any concerns about how it is going, please let me know. This is a public forum so feel free to email me at daveaiazzi@yahoo.com.
      Thanks for letting me know.
      -dave

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