SCUSD Observer

Sacramento, California

Archive for the ‘Karen Young’ Category

One Size Does Not Fit All

Highlights for Wednesday evening’s community meeting at Martin Luther King Jr. K-8 School, West study area.
Board Members in attendance: Roy Grimes, Patrick Kennedy, Diana Rodriguez
The school’s auditorium was packed full of supporters for John Morse Waldorf , MLK (K-8) and Lisbon elementary schools.

Community comments

  • Many speakers voiced support for John Morse Elementary and its Waldorf methods programs of art, music and alternative learning environments. A suggestion was made to augment the John Morse program at Harkness Elementary School, thereby eliminating the problem of over-enrollment lottery while offering the Waldorf program a place to grow.
  • One community member expressed outrage at the ongoing construction of the Pocket-Greenhaven Library (in conjunction with the School of Engineering and Sciences). Deputy Superintendent Tom Barentson explained that the joint-use project has already been financed with voter-approved bond money and the costs associated with the construction do not affect SCUSD’s current budget woes.
  • A MLK parent suggested a joint-use proposal for SMUD to install solar rooftops across the district’s schools to begin the transition to renewable energy.
  • A neighbor mentioned that the district should consider more pre-school and kindergarten classes to keep schools open because of a growing number of young families with toddlers in the area.
  • The PTA president at MLK suggested that the district look into asking wealthy donors to give money to the schools. Other speakers proposed corporate advertising or partnerships with business as a way to sponsor the school system – a recurrent theme at many of the recent community meetings.
  • A schools’ psychologist asked the district to look at parent involvement when considering school closure.
  • Karen Young, former SCUSD board member, suggested that the current board needs to look at personnel costs, benefits, and retirement costs and ask employees to share the deficit with possible furloughs or re-negotiated contracts. When approached for reaction, a representative of the Sacramento City Teachers’ Association had no comment on Young’s remarks.


Mayor-elect Johnson has "already sat down with some of the superintendents"

In today’s Sacramento Bee, Kevin Johnson espouses his view on the current state of education in Sacramento:

Among his other priorities, said the former NBA star turned education reformer, would be improving schools, even though that’s not part of the mayor’s official job description.

“We have 100 some-odd schools in Sacramento,” he said. “Over the next year I am going to see if I can visit all of our schools. I have already sat down with some of the superintendents. I want to sit down with all of them. I want them to tell me what they would like to see from the mayor, how can I be helpful in terms of education. Because our city will never realize its potential if we don’t have great public schools. One of my goals is four or eight years from now, looking back, that the trajectory of our schools has increased when it comes to student achievement.”

In another part of today’s Bee, titled Advice for Mayor-elect Johnson, retiring school board member (and avid Johnson campaign supporter) Karen Young weighs in:

Education is the key to our city’s economic, social and moral success.

That’s absolutely critical. In order to do all of what he is saying, he has to understand what schools are going through. I think he can help schools understand they have to be competitive, they have to market themselves, and they don’t know how to do that. Bring in marketsavvy people who understand how to utilize their assets, whether it’s the buildings, the programs or the staffs. Through the city, or directly through the schools, it would help them achieve what they are trying to achieve with our students.

He has to use his political muscle, not only in politics, in the Legislature, but also with the foundation connections,the individual connections he has. I think it’s critical that he elevate the discussion to that level. He should continue his town hall forums to really engage our citizens.

What Kevin has to do is connect everyone. He has to rally the citizens, because they are complacent about our schools. They think things are OK. He needs to rally the business leaders, education leaders, and especially parents around the importance of education. He needs to talk about it. Talk, talk, talk. Locally, at forums, nationally, he needs to do that.

Written by scusdobserver

November 9, 2008 at 4:16 pm

Board Facilities Committee Calls a Special Meeting for This Wednesday

Subject: School utilization and consolidation
When: Wednesday, October 29
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Where: Genesis High School, 5601 47th Ave., Sacramento

For the complete agenda, click here

SCUSD Board Member Karen Young contributes to Johnson’s campaign

In the Bee today:

Contributions included $500 from Sacramento City Unified school board member Karen Young

Written by scusdobserver

May 23, 2008 at 1:45 pm