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Board of Education President Previews Highlights of Today’s Meeting

Published on Thursday, February 27, 2020 | 5:45 am

Pasadena School Board President Patrick Cahalan provided Pasadena Now with this Executive Summary previewing today’s School Board meeting. The meeting’s public session will be called to order at 7:00 p.m. in PASADENA UNFIED’s Elbie J. Hickambottom Board Room at 351 South Hudson Avenue, Pasadena.

Most of Thursday’s agenda is routine business.

The slate of policy updates are fairly routine. As changes in statute occur, the California School Boards Association sends out updated example policies in various areas that comport with the new changes in law. Our Board Policy committee reviews the CSBA sample language, aligns it with any existing PUSD-specific language, and presents the final edition incorporating the existing PUSD language with the state updates. I am still reviewing the policy updates but none appear to be changes instituted at the local level (no “new” business as far as the district governance group is concerned), they’re all just incorporation of state changes.

The big items are the public hearing on the charter petition from Melkonian High School and the post-consolidation redistricting presentation (Items J1 and K1), and the approval of some of the tentative agreements with labor partners (Item M4, letters “c” through “i”).

The public hearing is statutory and not an action item. We received a charter petition from the Melkonian High School and this is the first step in processing that request. The next step will be for staff to prepare and present a recommendation to either accept the petition or deny it. We will then schedule a public meeting action item to vote on the petition. This coming Thursday is informational only; there may not even be much board conversation or discussion, simply the petitioners presenting their material. The real conversation will occur when we have the staff recommendation (either to approve or deny), and the board discusses the ramifications and impacts on the district. That will be at a future meeting.

The redistricting presentation is from our demographer, for the board to come to a consensus on how it would like to proceed after the school consolidations, redrawing the boundaries for each school’s neighborhood zone. The board will have to decide whether they want this process to be staff-driven or community-driven, and we will direct staff accordingly; the outcome of the discussion will be either for staff to redraw boundaries using internal data or to establish a committee including members of the public to accomplish that work.

Finally, the tentative agreements are all for the existing year, and they are salary agreements that we budgeted for during our initial budget. They represent a one-time payment for last year, and an on-schedule increase of 3% for the current 2019-2020 year. These represent ongoing negotiations to get our bargaining units to have compensation that is closer to comparable districts.

Patrick Cahalan
Pasadena Unified School District Board of Education

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