School Board Notes – Kourtney Brodnax

It was standing room only this past Tuesday Dec 11th at the school district office. Many Culver High seniors were in attendance as they observed the panel of board members to fulfill their yearly government class participation requirements, alongside proud elementary and middle school families because that night was a special one.

The American Citizenship Awards were presented to a total of eight students across the district. Selah Cortez (El Marino), Jason Zhang (El Rincon), Josue Garcia (Linwood), Jessica Inocencio (Farragut), Rikesh Patel (La Ballona), Mariko Rooks (CCMS), Milan Lay (CCHS) and Knoel Westbrook-Anderson (Culver Park) were all honorees for outstanding achievements within their educational habitats. However, they weren’t the only ones who received recognition from the crowd. Before the students were given their titles, the board picked their new positions for the 2012-2013 year. Unanimously, Kathy Paspalis became President.

“I’m just humbled by the support,” said Paspalis.

Patricia Siever took on the role of Vice President and Nancy Goldberg is now the new clerk. Laura Chardiet acts as the Parliamentarian and Karlo Silbiger still serves as a member.

UCLA will continue to support CCUSD by providing summer programs for middle school students in danger of not meeting math standards. Last summer over 125 students participated in a physics game where it made science click with real life. Pepperdine has also taken an initiative to help long term English language learners in writing and reading, in addition to, LMU’s Project STELLAR. With a five year grant, they are able to reduce challenges for long term English language learners in middle and high school as well.

As the educational aspect becomes stronger, so does the community and student bodies of the district. Culver Middle made $600 profit off their annual Halloween dance and will be conducting Pennies for Patients drive in February. Culver High raised $260 for student activities from the Wing Stop fundraiser last month, created an inter-club council where representatives of each active club meets to discuss issues or topics, alongside a student’s rights committee that handles stronger contentions like sexual harassment and bullying. Culver Park sponsored a toy drive and is in the process of creating a mural. They also hold a drug and alcohol awareness program every Monday after school.

After all updates were broadcasted to the board and audience, the 2012-2013 first interim report was presented by Sean Kearney, the director of fiscal services. Luckily, with the pass of Prop 30, three-fifths of the deficit has been eliminated and over two million dollars has been added back to the budget. Consequently, this adds a surplus for books and supplies. It also allows for more investment spending during capital improvements.

The sustainability committee is working indefinitely on implementing solar panels with the help of Balfour Beatty Construction and a budget of $3.8 million dollars. Also, a one million dollar elevator system will be built over the summer of 2013 at Culver High to accommodate the handicapped students more efficiently. Additionally, the Robert Frost Auditorium will be renovated, a two million dollar project aside from the 8.5 million dollar projection cost to furnish a new turf field. It is still undetermined whether or not the district will need bridge or state funding to coincide with the $3.5 million already invested.

www.culvercitysymphony.org

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