SCUSD Observer

Sacramento, California

Archive for the ‘Tom Barentson’ Category

Tom Barentson quits

Our friends over at the Big Education Ape reported Friday that Deputy Superintendent and CFO of SCUSD, Tom Barenton has resigned, effective October 15. Barentson has cited personal reasons for his departure.


Written by scusdobserver

October 27, 2009 at 3:58 am

Posted in Tom Barentson

A stinking, rotten mess

Ah, the squirming begins yet again. Kevin Johnson’s spokesperson, Steve Maviglio will try to convince us that Rick Maya’s allusion to obstruction of justice charges are just a simple technology goof. Gerald Walpin, the Inspector General, is a rogue character and the SCUSD administration says everything is in order, nothing to see here folks…but the wallpaper is peeling and underneath lies a stinking, rotten mess.

New charges could undermine St. HOPE settlement

Sacramento City Unified School District officials said they will continue to monitor the St. HOPE Public Schools situation but noted that most of the concerns cited in Maya’s letter involve the charter schools’ relationship with St. HOPE Academy, which is a private nonprofit not under their control.

The district authorizes the charters that allow St. HOPE to run Sacramento Charter High School and PS7 Elementary School. The charter schools pay rent to the school district for two campuses.

“Our main point is looking at the fiscal solvency,” said district Interim Superintendent Susan Miller. “They’ve met their timelines, so we don’t believe that will be a problem.”

At tonight’s board meeting
presumably Deputy Superintendent Tom Barentson will present St. Hope charter school’s quarterly report and a discussion about facilities will ensue among SCUSD board members.

Written by scusdobserver

May 21, 2009 at 2:16 pm

Who is running this show?

At the risk of simply blogging as a Sacramento Bee critique, today we’d like to draw your attention to an editorial: Superintendent Search Drags On.

The piece illuminates two (particularly) noticeable points:

  • Thirteen months after Maggie Mejia announced her retirement, SCUSD is without a permanent superintendent.
  • Teachers, principals and Teamsters unions announced Thursday that they do not want a search. They want the board to appoint interim Superintendent Susan Miller as the permanent superintendent.

Why isn’t a permanent superintendent in place now? Is it a result of board incompetence that this search is not complete? Are our new representatives so green that they just can’t seem to get up-to-speed on what their responsibilities and priorities are? Or is it more likely that the District is without a superintendent because of an internal power struggle? What is the back story here?

Susan Miller, together with Tom Barentson, have force-fed their worst-case-scenario economic policies to this newly-elected board and the majority have adopted Miller’s recommendations without question.

She’s the teacher and they are the class.

And with the editorial’s revelation that the Teamsters are now involved in pushing for Miller’s permanent hiring, the question of who is actually running this show takes on a larger intrigue.

Written by scusdobserver

May 9, 2009 at 2:19 pm

Eight Million and Holding…

In today’s Sacramento Bee, the story focuses on the still-unresolved issue of the consent decree high school.

In the article, Interim Superintendent Susan Miller publicly acknowledges the rumor that the District is considering the idea of a partnership with Sacramento State.

“Right now we have some proposals from people as a result of the community meetings,” Miller said. “One is a partnership with Sacramento State as a demonstration (high) school.”

“Demonstration” presumably means college preparatory and would satisfy the requirements of the consent decree if all parties agree to it. Tom Barentson, District CFO, points out in the article that the Where’s My High School activists wanted more out of a high school than the consent decree lawsuit required.

In the meantime, the District is holding $8 million in bond money. The consent decree high school was supposed to be established by the fall of last year. The District claims that other needs are more pressing at the moment, specifically current budget cuts.

It’s time to resolve this issue.

Written by scusdobserver

May 1, 2009 at 2:18 pm

Highlights from first Facilities’ Use Community Meeting

One of our astute readers attended the first community meeting at A.M. Winn Elementary last night and writes in to give a summary of what transpired.

Interim Superintendent Susan Miller, and Deputy Superintendents Mary Shelton and Tom Barentson made an initial 20-minute presentation which included a handout outlining the study tools for school site utilization.

The three new board members (Diana Rodriguez, Donald Terry and Patrick Kennedy) attended and area 3 board member Donald Terry spoke from the audience. The Vice Mayor of Rancho Cordova, Ken Cooley, spoke and offered to explore partnership opportunities with the district.

Here is a brief list of some of the questions and comments from the audience (the unabridged version should be posted on the district web site by next week):

Information from Tom Barentson, mid year cuts = about $300 per student

College Glen Neighborhood Association made a concrete proposal to consolidate Thomas Jefferson and Bancroft into one elementary school located at Thomas Jefferson and turning Bancroft into a Jr. High school.

Other notes about audience questions:

Year around schools?

Choice schools vs. neighborhood schools?

E21 high schools and cost efficiency?

Sac Charter High open enrollment advertised in the Connection?

Grade consolidation 2/3 4/5 etc,

PTA and school fund raising to be a factor in decisions to consolidate/close

Before and After school programs, Transportation and space consideration

Future growth and use of Serna Center

Partner with Parks and Recreation

Safety after school for long walks

College Education/teacher students as adjunct for over-worked teachers

Use school for Parent Partners for Pre school (any info on this? sounds like a good program.)

Child Care opportunities at school

Special thanks to Mike Simpson