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Fremont Unified School District Board meeting report
By Miriam G. Mazliach
February 5, 2013
The following are highlights from the Fremont Unified School District (FUSD) Board meeting held January 23, 2013.
Community Leadership/Superintendent’s Report:
In honor of African American History Month (February), Sr. Pastor Horacio Jones of Newark’s Family Bible Fellowship invited the Board, staff and the tri-cities community to attend the church’s interactive program on “A History of the African American People- A Bridge Over Troubled Waters.” The event will be held on Sunday, February 24, 1:30 p.m., at the Family Bible Fellowship, 37620 Filbert Street in Newark. For more information call (510) 505-1735.
Oral Communications/Public Comments:
Brannin Dorsey, President of the Fremont Unified District Teachers Association (FUDTA), expressed her displeasure that teachers have been working without a contract since July. Furthermore, she stated that it seemed unfair that teacher representatives are not reimbursed for their time/expenses spent serving on the bargaining team, whereas the district negotiation team is compensated, according to Dorsey.
In another matter, Dorsey asked the district to initiate a School Safety Task Force, working with the schools, the city, and Police Department. She stated that all schools would then have common guidelines and that it was important to be proactive rather than reactive.
Board President Larry Sweeney added that there has already been a meeting with the City Manager “to get the ball rolling on safety.”
Agenda Items – Updates:
Assistant Superintendent, Business, Raul Parungao, reported that in December the district was able to sell their refunding bond and recoup $11.1 million for Fremont taxpayers. The district is very good with refinancing its bond obligations and has an excellent credit rating.
The district earned a clean audit annual audit report after three initial findings were addressed and corrected. The audit was conducted and completed by the firm of Nigro and Nigro, with FUSD earning a clean audit.
Parungao explained that the district recently received the Governor’s information on the budget for 2013-14. Having a balanced budget, unheard of in recent years, provides some positive news. Purungao is hopeful that due to a new formula for distributing funds to schools and the propositions that recently passed, more funds will be distributed to districts and education. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens after the Governor’s May Budget Revision. FUSD is required by law to pass its budget by June 30.
In a returning agenda item, the Second Reading on the Selection of Supplemental Materials, the Superintendent suggested that three separate reading lists be compiled for: junior high, high school and AP English. (These lists of books are utilized by classroom teachers for curriculum enrichment and to enhance the learning process.) He is seeking input from English Department chairs from the various schools, teachers and committee members.
Additionally, two Irvington High School teachers stated, that in order to be ready with the new “Common Core Standards,” the books need to be approved in a timelier manner. They recommended that the Supplemental Materials Committee meet twice a year, rather than once, which was agreeable to the Board.