March 2, 2024 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

SMMUSD Counselor Controversy at Rest:

The SMMUSD Board of Education approved restoring three counseling positions at Olympic High, Lincoln Middle School, Malibu High, and John Adams Middle School– Olympic and Lincoln will increase from part-time positions to full.

The board approved a controversial decision in April to cut counselors from Samohi and Malibu High that left both with exaggerated ratios for students to counselors, especially for Malibu that shares three counselors at the joint middle and high school building.

Board members are looking to the future, especially as far as the elections in November lurking in the horizon. Debates were long-winded and terse compared to other meetings, although BOE meetings are not known for brevity.

“It doesn’t need to be said that this decision has implications that are sizable,” Board Member Jose Escarse said. “I do think that we need to provide that minimum level of service to students at our secondary schools.”

Board members Kelly Pye, Oscar de la Torre, and Ralph Mechur all pushed for reinstatement of three counselors for both schools, plus an additional position for the high schools despite the budget crunch of allocating up to $300,000 for the three reinstated positions. The board withheld any further appointments until after the Save Our Schools campaign funding could be contributed to the strict budget.

The Save Our Schools funds may add additional counselors when totals are tallied from the bucket designated for reducing secondary class size and adding counselors. Superintendent Tim Cuneo said the decision for how the funds are used will be based on need.

To add to the sense of urgency, the SOS final numbers may not be counted in time for the next BOE meeting on August 18 where additional staffing and fund allocations will be decided.

Council Appoints New SMMUSD Staff

Debra Washington is the new assistant superintendent for human resources at Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District, just in time for upcoming expected rehiring of teachers who received pink slips. Washington replaces the beloved Mike Matthews who left for a superintendent position at Manhattan Beach Unified School District.

Washington is from the Sequoia Union High School District, where she has been serving as the Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources. At SMMUSD, she wants to keep instructional best practices in mind when hiring and training certificated and classified staff and their managers. She also has experience with budget negotiations and teacher training.

The board also appointed Steven Richardson as the new principal at Will Rogers Learning Community. He comes from the Lawndale Elementary School District, where he has served as Director of Extended Day Programs. He also served as an administrator of a Title I school that also housed a special needs program.

Richardson connected his respect for children that he brings from home to the classroom, he has three children ranging in ages from three weeks to 10-years-old who all attended the meeting to greet the board.

Victoria Hearst has been appointed as the designated Special education coordinator for the district. She served as assistant principal at Roosevelt Elementary School for the past three years. Prior to that, Hurst served as the family literacy specialist, a summer school intensive intervention teacher, and a second and third grade teacher, all at Roosevelt. She is familiar with present special education services at SMMUSD.

in News
Related Posts

Construction Alert: Topanga Canyon Boulevard Faces Nightly Closures Starting March 4

March 1, 2024

March 1, 2024

Caltrans Announces 18-Mile Project Spanning Chatsworth to PCH Commuters in the Los Angeles area should prepare for significant delays as...

Film Review: Nyad

February 29, 2024

February 29, 2024

FILM REVIEWNYADRated PG-13121 MinutesReleased November 3rdOscar Nominations: Best Leading Actress, Best Supporting Actress “I failed many times, but I can...

Security Officers Being Deployed at Big Blue Bus Stations and Routes

February 29, 2024

February 29, 2024

The Guards will be provided by a firm with other security contracts with the city of Santa Monica  By Zach...

Leap Day Brings Once-in-Four-Year Deals at Popular Restaurants All Day Long

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Krispy Kreme, Dunkin’, and More Roll Out Special Offers to Mark the Occasion Leap Day, that rare additional day occurring...

Sweet Lady Jane’s Social Media Tease Continues As Locations Sport Hiring Notices

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Mysterious Posts Leave Fans Eager for the Return, But Questions Linger By Dolores Quintana After resurfacing on social media, the...

Upcoming Ice Cream Shop on Montana Ave. Will Serve Multitude of Vegan Flavors

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

The Company Has Come a Long Way Since Its Humble Beginnings as a New York City Food Truck By Zach...

(Video) Pro-Palestine Protest at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Protesters were there to protest the arrival of U.S. Representative Nancy Pelosi Counter-protesters drove by in a car. @smmirrornews Pro-Palestine...

(Video) Restaurants Replace Glass Front Doors After Late Night Robbery Spree in Del Ray

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Seven restaurants and small businesses in Del Rey and Venice, including Nick the Greek and Dudley Market, were robbed. Council...

SMMUSD Appoints New Asst. Superintendent of Education Services

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Dr. Williamson Will Assume Her Role on March 8, Bringing 17 Years of Education Experience In a special board meeting...

Hollywood Royalty to Shine at 96th Oscars: First Wave of Star-Studded Presenter Lineup Unveiled

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Incredible Lineup of Actors and Previous Oscar Winners Announced Executive producer and showrunner Raj Kapoor, along with executive producers Molly...

Vote Smart, Vote Early: Streamlining Your 2024 Presidential Primary Experience in L.A. County

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Skip the Lines and Save Time – Your Guide to Early Voting Options  In preparation for the upcoming 2024 Presidential...

Iconic Venice Beach Sculpture and Landmark to be Removed, Returned to Artist’s Property

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Since the Money, Effort or Desire to Purchase the Piece Appears to Not Be There, the Artist Wants It Back...

(Video) Heartfelt candlelight vigils in Westchester and West Hollywood for Nex Benedict

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

The non-binary 16 year old student with Choctaw ancestry died in Owasso, Oklahoma after being beaten by three older high...

Sweet Lady Jane Sparks Hope of Return – Popular Bakery Hints at Reopening Across LA

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

After Abrupt Closures, Beloved Bakery Hints at a Comeback, Leaving Fans Intrigued  Sweet Lady Jane, a Los Angeles cake bakery...

Waymo’s LA Expansion Hits Roadblock: CPUC Temporarily Halts Self-Driving Company’s Plans

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

California Public Utilities Commission suspends Waymo’s service expansion for 120 days. California’s Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has put a temporary...