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August 19, 2009 > City meets school district

City meets school district

City of Milpitas
August 5, 2009

Representatives from the City of Milpitas (City) met representatives from the Milpitas Unified School District (District). District Superintendent Karl Black expects 9700 students the first day of school.

There may be a few more cars on the road this year because, for the first time, because of budget cuts, the district will be charging $2 a day for student bussing. Black suspects that when it was free people used the service, but might change now that it is potentially $360.

The district will still bus the special education students and the students who receive free lunch.

Students who receive reduced lunch will be charged half the bus fee.

Black feels the cars of parents dropping off students will be evenly spread out through the city. The district never buses high school kids, so this might affect Pomeroy Elementary.
There will probably be 2900 high students. Black is projecting 60 - 65 new students this year.

Joint use agreement

Dr. Black felt that many joint use agreements were way out of date, and recommended making changes.

Joint use of fields

City Attorney Michael Ogaz: In the original agreement it indicates that all school sites, exterior sites are free of charge, and in the proposed amendments from the school district, elementary and middle school are free of charge, but the city will be charged for high school fields.

Black: That is because of the turf that has to be maintained. Where the middle school and elementary schools are grass fields.

Regarding the baseball field by Sinnott and Rancho, neither the city nor the district can find any documentation as to who built it. The consensus was that the city built it. Black said it not used by any school. Bonnie Greiner, Parks and Recreation Supervisor, confirmed that it is strictly a rental field now. Black said they rent it to cricket, and maybe some soccer people.

Greiner: So there are still some things in this document that we need to meet on and firm up.

Bobby Sox

Those at the meeting discussed the proposed changes in the joint use of the sports complex at Russell Middle School from school district, and City Manager Tom Williams had ideas. The field is used by the district for after school sports, and the city arranges the field to be used by the Bobby Sox athletic league.

Williams said that the city is paying $40,000 in maintenance, and the school district has exclusive benefit. No way out of the contract that ends in 2036.

The major change proposed by the district was to change the district's use time from 8 - 4 to 8 - 5 p.m. so the school could have more time for their sporting events.

Greiner: The city issues the Russell Field from 4 to whenever, and on weekends, and give a copy of the schedule. But we never get a copy of the school's sports schedule. And so there have been some occurrences where Bobby Sox have had the field scheduled, but the soccer people won't move.

Black said that they need to get their athletic director to sit down with the Bobby Sox director and make a schedule. City and superintendent were in total agreement.
Ogaz said that they Bobby Sox were resistant to changing it from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. They feel that they need the time that they have.

Black thought they worked out the issues, Greiner said that they are still issues with the timing. After school the little ones need to use the field during the day time because there are no lights.

Greiner: Bobby Sox goes through the City. The City goes through the district. It might be a better idea if Bobby Sox scheduled directly with the district to work out the schedules together.

Black: According to the contract after 4 p.m. the field is theirs.

Greiner: They're having issues that school teams are still there on the field at 4 p.m., even if they have the paper and the contract, the coach and the players are having a match...

Black: I guess the question for me is 4 p.m. realistic when you have a school get out at 3 p.m. Maybe when the contract was made the students got out at 2 p.m., and the state increased the minutes that middle school students have to go. Black thought that maybe 4 p.m. used to work, and now it should be 5 p.m.

Williams: Then we would have to amend the contract. William's concern was that the city paying $40,000 in maintenance for three months out of the year, and we don't get a say in terms of priority.

Williams is willing to discuss the entire contract, and involve the district in participation.
District Board President Michael Mendizabal: You want the school district to take over maintenance for the Bobby Sox field?

Williams wants the district to participate in some of the maintenance.

The joint use agreement has no explicit termination clause, and does not terminate until 2036.

Black said if the district amending the contract to 5 p.m. "if that opens this whole thing up then I'll probably just drop it and leave it as is. And then hopefully I'll work it out with the athletic director and the Bobby Sox."

Black: My interest was not to take this field back.

Vice Mayor Pete McHugh asked if the contract could be changed if both sides agreed, and both sides said yes.

Ogaz: And of course there's always cause for breach, and termination on those bases. But there is no termination within the words of the contract, except in 2036.

Greiner: Bobby Sox has no affiliation with the City whatsoever. It's just a community organization, just like little league, and PAL football and soccer. And there's no fees charged for any youth sport organization within this community. So, where in fact, the City is maintaining the field that's being used by a school district team and then a youth organization. But we're not programming any City organizations or sponsored events at that field.

Mendizabal: Yeah but this whole field was set up at the behest of the City to get Bobby Sox in there... It was not the school district saying please do this for us. This was...

Councilmember Althea Polanski: It was a joint partnership.

All agreed on that point.

Black: The same issues you have, Tom (Williams), we have. Cost of maintaining that field.

McHugh commented that no action on this item was ready. "It seems to me that the two administrations should chat a little more... See if you can make some progress."

Midtown Area

Planning and Neighborhood Services Director James Lindsay: The Centria Project actually looks like it will get finished out. The City Council approved an amendment to that project at the August 4 meeting. Lyon Properties looks like they will finish that project.

This the second half of the Centria project.

Black: The triangle piece across the Great Mall.

City Council will consider modifications to the previously approved apartment project Alexan. "The Council will be considering a development agreement for a senior housing project on the same site at their" August 18 meeting, Lindsay said in an email. This will not impact the schools.

The Transit Area

Black will be having a public hearing at the August 25 School Board meeting about boundary change in anticipation of the development of the property on Piper Drive. The boundary currently sits at the south end of the Sinnott attendance area. The railroad tracks is the dividing line. Sinnott Elementary is a school with over 700 students, and a long way from the Piper Drive area to the school.

That would be the development that a new transit area elementary school would absorb. Black does not know the timing of the new transit area elementary school, so in the meantime he will propose a boundary change to send the students to Randall Elementary. The distance is basically the same, and Randall only has around 400 students. Zanker is already full of students.

Currently no one is inhabiting the transit area development, so it is a boundary change that affects no current student or citizen. So the students in the transit area will go to Randall until the new transit area elementary school is built, at which time another boundary change will be necessary.

Once the new transit area elementary school is built there will be major boundary changes to Spangler, Zanker, Sinnott. It probably won't have a large effect on Pomeroy, Weller, Burnett, or Rose, but it will change probably 4 or 5 schools.

City and District representatives don't anticipate construction in the transit area beginning for 2 - 6 years because of planning and other steps necessary, but the superintendent thinks this is the best time to make this particular change.

Boundary changes that affect people are extraordinarily challenging.

Next meeting
Wednesday, October 7
4:30 p.m.
Milpitas School District
1331 E. Calaveras Blvd., Milpitas
(408) 635-2600

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