Sep 7 2022

Parents for Educational Excellence in Piedmont (PEEP) is hosting a forum for all the school board candidates.   

All candidates running in the 2022 election for a seat on the school board have accepted an invitation to attend this event.  

This year voters have three candidates running for two seats on the school board:  Ruchi Medhekar, Lindsay Thomasson, and Shirley Hooi.

The forum will be held in the Piedmont High School Ambassador Chris Stevens Library on September 22nd from 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM.

Please pre-register so we can ask for a larger venue if needed and please arrive early to the event.

Registrants can add a suggested question for the candidates.  

Registered attendees also qualify for raffle prizes.
 
To sign up:  bit.ly/PEEP_Forum
 
Please forward to all your Piedmont friends and family.
PEEP was founded in 2020 as a 501(c)(4) to connect parents who watch and participate in school board meetings and pay close attention to how decisions affect Educational Excellence in PUSD.  You can learn more about the focus of this organization at EdExcellencePiedmont.com and can sign up to volunteer.
Editors’ Note:  Parents for Educational Excellence in Piedmont is a separate organization from the Piedmont Civic Association.
Jul 31 2022

REMINDER!

NOMINATION PERIOD FOR CITY COUNCIL AND BOARD OF EDUCATION

ENDS  AUGUST 12TH, 2022

The City of Piedmont will hold its General Municipal Election on November 8, 2022.

The nomination period for the three vacancies on the Piedmont City Council and two vacancies on the Board of Education IS OPEN NOW!

The deadline for submitting completed paperwork is Friday, August 12th at 5:00 p.m. There is no cost to candidates to file nomination papers and place your name on the ballot for the November election.

The City Council and Board of Education are Piedmont’s two elected bodies and guide the operation of Piedmont City government and the Piedmont Unified School District respectively. Members of these bodies may serve a maximum of 2 consecutive four-year terms.

The City publishes the Guide to Nomination and Candidacy, which provides details about the nomination and candidacy process which prospective candidates should find useful.

Prospective candidates are required to schedule an appointment to take out nomination papers with the City Clerk’s office. An appointment will also be required to submit the nomination papers once the candidate has completed their work. These appointments generally last between 30 minutes and one hour.

Residents with questions about the process or wishing to make an appointment can call the City Clerk’s office at (510) 420-3040 or send an email to cityclerk@piedmont.ca.gov.

Read the Council resolution calling for the election below:

https://piedmont.ca.gov/common/pages/DisplayFile.aspx?itemId=18746218

Nov 20 2021

Community Advisory Committee is composed of individuals associated with the School District to “strengthen community and positive relationships amongst our various stakeholders.”

Randall Booker, Superintendent, November 10, 2021,  SUPERINTENDENT’S COMMUNITY ADVISORY COMMITTEE – UPDATED

I. SUPPORT INFORMATION

At the April 28, 2021 Board of Education Meeting, Naomi Hunter, Communications Consultant presented the results of the District’s Pandemic Response Survey. The presentation can be viewed here. Ms. Hunter provided several recommendations to improve communications across the district and community.

  • – Hire Communications Director (1.0FTE)
  • – Establish Communications goals (21-22) related to surveying, social media engagement, Piedmont Ahead publications, quarterly departmental communication updates (Tech, SPED, Curriculum & Instruction, Facilities), etc.
  • – Member of the Superintendent’s Cabinet to provide ongoing assistance and guidance in communicating both strategic and tactical initiatives.
  • – Contract to redevelop the PUSD Website.
  • – Schedule standing APT Liaison Committee Meetings between the Board, Administrative Team, and the Association of Piedmont Teachers to strengthen communication, shared understanding, and collaborative efforts to support students and educators.
  • – Develop and schedule Supt. Advisory Committee Meetings for 21-22 that include students, educators, and parents.

The District has moved forward with each of these initiatives for the 21-22 school year and will launch the Superintendent’s Community Advisory Committee in December, with monthly meetings to follow.

Background on the Superintendent’s Community Advisory Committee

The Superintendent’s Community Advisory Committee was introduced initially at the October 27, 2021 Board of Education Meeting. The Board and community provided input around the membership of the community which led to changes in the roster (see below). Superintendent will collaborate with the Parent Club presidents and the PEF Director to solicit parent involvement that is wide-reaching. Building off of the success of a variety of Superintendent committees (Facilities Steering, Budget Advisory, Health and Safety Steering, etc.), the purpose of the Superintendent’s Community Advisory Committee is to:

● strengthen community and positive relationships amongst our various stakeholders;

● listen, learn, and better understand one another on the various successes and areas to improve across the District;

● generate ideas to improve communications, district-wide operations, and the student and staff learning/working environment.

Membership

The Superintendent’s Community Advisory Committee will consist of the following membership (25 people in total):

  • 1. Superintendent
  • 2. Director of Communication and Community Relations
  • 3. (2) APSA Members: 1 Certificated / 1 Classified
  • 4. (2) Certificated Staff Members (APT): 1 Elementary / 1 Secondary
  • 5. (2) Classified Staff Members (CSEA): 1 Elementary / 1 Secondary
  • 6. (2) Board of Education Members
  • 7. (8) Parents of current PUSD students – 1 per school site, 2 at-large
  • 8. (6) Students (2 PMS, 2 MHS, 2 PHS)
  • 9. PEF Executive Director APSA, APT, and CSEA will choose their own members to participate. PMS, PHS, and MHS ASB will choose their own members. Each school site Parent Club will appoint a respective community member for participation. Notes will be drafted and published for the Piedmont Community.

Meeting Dates/Times* 3:45pm – 5:15pm Dec. 6th Jan. 10th Feb. 28th Mar. 14th Apr. 4th * All meetings will be held virtually via Google Meet until further notice.

II. RECOMMENDATION: INFORMATION AND DISCUSSION Review the proposed Superintendent’s Community Advisory Committee.

 

PCA Board Background on Updated Superintendent’s Community Advisory Committee 11-10-2021_184416sckde3ggtq0by5dhsh2fdlkk

Board Meeting Summary – 11-10-21.docx

Oct 3 2021

Two million six hundred sixty three thousand and seven hundred twenty nine dollars are Piedmont’s share of the COVID American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Funds

On Monday, October 4, 2021, the Piedmont City Council will consider how to spend the $2,663,729 in windfall funds arising from  the Federal government to assist with costs.  Read the AGENDA here.

The priority list developed by the Piedmont staff is listed below.

Approve the attached resolution allocating the City’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Funds as follows:

A. Devote lost revenue funds to address urgent facilities projects, prioritized as follows:

1. Dispatch Center Relocation\Remodel

2. Initiation of Master Planning Process for the future of Police Department, Fire Department and City Hall

3. One or a combination of the following:

  • City Hall Basement:
  • Digitization of Residential Property Files and Remodel Office Space ·
  • Fire Department Living Quarters Renovation
  • Recreation Department Building Renovation

B. Devote the remaining more restricted funds as follows:

1. Cover the City’s direct COVID-19 related expenses incurred after March 3, 2021

2. Provide premium pay to certain Recreation Department childcare personnel who were exposed on a daily basis to critical health risks while interacting with the public due to the nature of their jobs

3. Provide COVID-19 specific support to the Piedmont Unified School District by providing $100,000 toward funding a temporary full-time school nurse to assist PUSD in its COVID-19 response. Such resource would be available to support the City’s Recreation Department COVID-19 response needs as well.

Read the full October 4, 2021 staff report below:

COVID FUNDS 102021

https://piedmont.ca.gov/common/pages/DisplayFile.aspx?itemId=18049031

Comment links to Piedmont City Councilmembers:

Mayor Teddy King

tking@piedmont.ca.gov
(510) 420-3048

Vice Mayor Tim Rood

trood@piedmont.ca.gov
(510) 239-7663

Councilmember Jen Cavenaugh

jcavenaugh@piedmont.ca.gov
(415) 215-6933

Councilmember Betsy Smegal Andersen

bandersen@piedmont.ca.gov
(510) 420-3048

Councilmember Conna McCarthy

cmccarthy@piedmont.ca.gov
(510) 420-3048

Sep 22 2021

SCHOOLS, RECREATION, BUILDING RENOVATIONS, CITY MASTER PLAN, PUBLIC SAFETY AND MORE –

On Thursday, September 23. 2021 at 4:00 p.m.. the Piedmont Budget Advisory and Financial Planning Committee will meet via Zoom to consider a recommendation to the Piedmont City Council on how to spend $2,663,729, Piedmont’s COVID funds. 

To participate and view the meeting see the Agenda link below.

Of the $2,663,729 allocated to the City, $2,382,545 is tied to lost revenue and can be used in category 3 which, as noted in the full staff report linked below, may be used for any governmental services, including infrastructure projects. The remaining $281,183 must be used in accordance with the provisions of the other four categories.

STAFF RECOMMENDATION:

By motion, recommend that the City Council allocate the City’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Funds as proposed by staff:

A. Devote lost revenue funds to address urgent facilities projects, prioritized as follows:

1. Dispatch Center Relocation\Remodel

2. Initiation of Master Planning Process for the Future of Police, Fire and City Hall

3. City Hall Basement: Digitization of Residential Property Files and Remodel Office Space

3. Fire Department Living Quarters Renovation 3. Recreation Department Building Renovation

B. Devote the remaining more restricted funds as follows:

1. Cover the City’s direct COVID related expenses incurred after March 3, 2021

2. Provide premium pay to Recreation Department personnel who were exposed on a daily basis to critical health risks while interacting with the public due to the nature of their jobs

3. Provide COVID-19 specific support to the Piedmont Unified School District by providing funding toward a temporary full-time school nurse to assist PUSD in its COVID-19 response. Such resource would be available to support the City’s Recreation Department COVID response needs as well.

AGENDA >2021-09-23 Budget Advisory and Financial Planning Committee Agenda

READ  FULL STAFF REPORT >2021-09-23 ARPA Funding Direction – BAFPC

Sep 16 2021

Piedmont Unified School District Board Meeting Summary – September 14,  2021

Enrollment in schools throughout California has been on the decline, including in Piedmont. 

For the 2021-2022 School year under the current policies 41 approved Interdistrict transfer students enrolled in TK -5th grade and 12 approved Interdistrict transfer students enrolled in 6th -11th grade as of 8/37/21. Interdistrict transfers are students enrolled in Piedmont schools who originate from another school district.

In order to mitigate the loss of what could be considerable funding for our
schools, District staff recommended that the Interdistrict transfer policy be revised:

  1. Permit the option of accepting the Interdistrict transfers of students at all grade
    levels.
  2.  Allow for more flexibility in accepting the Interdistrict transfers of families whose grandparents reside in Piedmont.
  3.  Reflect language that adheres to recent changes in the Education Code.

Highlights of the Current Interdistrict Transfer Policy :

  1. The Superintendent or designee may approve interdistrict transfer requests when
    capacity within the District exists. Students whose requests are denied solely
    because of lack of capacity within the District will be placed on a waiting list, and
    their application will be considered if space becomes available.

The decision to admit out-of-District students is discretionary, when capacity
exists; applications may be approved based on the following priorities:
1. Parents Constructing or Remodeling a Home
2. High School Juniors and Seniors Who Have Moved Out of the District
3. Children of Piedmont Unified School District Employees
4. Children of the City of Piedmont Government Employees
5. Children of the Piedmont Educational Foundation Director
6. Children Residing on Calvert Court
7. Residences on Approved Piedmont Split Parcel Properties
8. GrandParent – Grandchild of an Individual(s) Who Lives Within the
Boundaries of PUSD

9.Approved Split Parcels with Oakland and Adjoining Minor Piedmont Parcel

10. Other Applicants

Outdoor Masking:

Superintendent Booker reviewed the District’s requirements regarding outdoor masking. At its last meeting, the Health & Safety Steering Committee was asked if there was an ‘off-ramp’ where the District could consider rolling back or eliminating the outdoor requirement. Discussion centered around that being outdoors is not a cure for COVID – aerosol transmission is still possible. Suggestion was made to wait until Alameda County falls to below five cases per 100,000 residents (currently at 13.5) before considering any changes to requirements.

Vaccinations:

The Committee will be asked if the rules should be different for vaccinated vs. unvaccinated students at its next meeting on September 29th.

As of September 13th, 83% of families had responded that 74% of eligible students  were fully vaccinated.

Revised Board Policy and Administrative Regulation 5141.31 – Immunizations

– Revised policy would add the COVID vaccination to the existing list of
vaccinations required for enrollment in PUSD. All age-eligible students would be required to show proof of vaccination or submit a medical exemption and be tested weekly. Questions to be answered before Board approval would be: what dates should be chosen as deadlines to show proof of vaccinations, how much time should students be given to become vaccinated once becoming age-eligible, and should the mandate be for students 12 and older, or 16 and older to fall under FDA approval for the Pfizer vaccine? Board will discuss and take possible action at its September 22nd meeting.

Next Regular School Board Meeting – Wednesday, September 22nd, 7 pm

May 16 2021

24/7: A Closer Look at security cameras on campus

Mar 23 2021

PIEDMONT UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT BOARD MEETING – March 24, 2021

 Update for on campus instruction – Spring and Fall

  • Negotiations continue for Spring on campus instruction.  
  • Fall 2021 – The Board of Education and the Piedmont Unified School District is planning for providing full-time, on-campus instruction for the 2021-2022 school year.  Read the staff report in the link below.

>VII_B_BackgroundOnCampusInstructionSpring2021AndFall2021_0

  • $10,000,000 in School Bonds: The bonds were awarded to the bidder providing the lowest true interest cost (TIC), which represents the interest to be repaid by taxpayers. The bids also include a premium to cover the costs of the sale so that the net amount received by the District is $10 million. Of the seven bids received, Fidelity Capital Markets had the lowest TIC at 2.1268%. The costs of issuance total $146,440, not including the compensation to the underwriters. Costs include fees paid to the bond counsel, financial advisor, rating agency and other miscellaneous costs related to the bond sale. These costs, as well as any underwriting costs or commissions are included in the TIC because they are paid from premium generated when the underwriters sell the bonds to investors. The competitive sale ensures that the bonds were sold at the lowest possible cost.

>VII_A_BackgroundResultsOfSaleSeries2021C

_0VII_A_PresentationPostSaleSummary_0

  • InterDistrict Transfers – Updated 

VIII_A_UpdatedBPAR5117InterDistrictTransferAttendance

  • Theater and STEAM Building Updates

VIII_B_BackgroundSTEAMTheaterGMP_0

  • Agenda and more links > HERE

Mar 9 2021

– Student transfers from other School Districts into the Piedmont School District are proposed on a priority basis.   Children of persons working 10 hours or more per week in Piedmont need no longer work for the City or School District and grandchildren of Piedmont residents will continue to be prioritized.

Expanded qualifications for enrollment in Piedmont Schools will be considered on March 10.

Three separate initiatives were discussed during a February 24th School Board meeting in order to help achieve the Board’s goal:

1. PUSD Athletic Coaches: Paid contracted athletic coaches [children] may be eligible for admittance to Piedmont schools based on verification of employment. Does not pertain to volunteer coaches. When a District Coach ceases employment with the District, he/she shall withdraw his/her child from the District no later than the end of the current semester or at the discretion of the Superintendent.

2. Persons Employed Within the City of Piedmont: Limits Children of Persons physically employed at least 10 hours a week within the City of Piedmont limits may be eligible for admittance to Piedmont schools. Proof of employment via a letter on employer’s stationary verifying schedule (hours and days) and location of employment and a copy of a current pay stub must accompany the application. When the person ceases employment within the City of Piedmont limits, he/she shall withdraw his/her child from the District no later than the end of the current semester or at the discretion of the Superintendent.

3. Children of the City of Piedmont Government Employees The District may admit children of City of Piedmont government employees employed at least 10 hours a week. A City government employee is defined as an employee who is on a regularly scheduled City of Piedmont government employee payroll on which appropriate deductions occur. It does not include consultants or contractors for the City of Piedmont.

Read the proposed priorities for admittance in the links below:

IX_B_BackgroundBPAR5117_0

IX_B_UpdatedBPAR5117InterDistrictTransferAttendance_0

To participate in this Agenda item on March 10, 2021, at the 7 pm, Piedmont Unified School District meeting, click the Agenda below:

https://agendaonline.net/public/Meeting.aspx?AgencyID=1241&MeetingID=82620&AgencyTypeID=1&IsArchived=False

Oct 29 2020

The Mercury News Editorial –

Editorial: Reject Piedmont property tax hike for pool repairs

The Mercury News editorial is copied below:

“Piedmont residents tax themselves to ensure that they have the best schools and premier city government. The average homeowner pays $4,400 in extra taxes for schools and another $635 for city services.

But those taxes also drive up the cost of housing in the exclusive city surrounded by Oakland and further ensure that those with average means will not be able to crack the city’s residential market.

Voters in Tuesday’s election will face two tax hikes. Measure TT, which we have previously recommended voters reject, would increase the city’s tax on property sales to state record-high levels. Now we look at Measure UU, a $19.5 million bond proposal to pay for replacing three old community pools with two new ones. Voters should reject that, too.

Based on the city estimates provided to voters, Measure UU would add an average $263 annually to the tax bill for a home assessed at the city average of slightly over $1 million.

It a bit of a tricky calculation for voters because city officials in the ballot wording obfuscated the projected average tax rate as 2.6 cents per $100 of assessed value rather than an easier-to-understand $26 per $100,000.

It turns out that the city overstated that rate, especially for the latter part of the 30-year tax. The firmer number is that city taxpayers would collectively pay about $1.3 million annually to retire the bonds needed to finance the construction.

To put that number in perspective, the city spends more than that – nearly $1.7 million to be precise – just to cover the interest payments on public employee pension debt. Put another way, most of the pool bond payments could be covered by Measure TT, which is expected to add about $948,462 annually to the city’s transfer tax revenues.

Individually and collectively, the two measures raise a question of, how much is too much? Rather than throwing multiple tax measures at voters, city leaders need to prioritize and look for savings elsewhere.”