Council, school board meet to work together

The school board and City Council met to have a frank discussion on how to better work together and learn what each body has planned.
School board members gave Council members Wednesday a copy of the curriculum audit that was released in February, and that sparked a discussion on the state of Gilroy schools.
“Our school ratings are abysmal,” said Mayor Mike Gilroy. “There’s some major frustration with people that nothing seems to be happening. … There must be something we could do collectively to get things done.”
Councilman Tom Springer said the joint meet is “always an informational exchange session, seeing how we can be more cooperative. I think it was very productive.”
Superintendent David
Alvarez said Gilroy Unified School District officials are doing a number of things to make the schools better.
“What we’re really trying to do in the school district is focus on one area and do well at it, and that area is reading,” he said.
Alvarez said teachers are being trained to teach reading
at all levels and that the Challenge 2000 grant the district received for four schools has improved the reading scores.
School board and City Council members also discussed the repair of South Valley Junior High School’s pool. The coating on the sides of the pool has started to come off and the cost to repair it will be almost $40,000.
The city uses the pool for about six weeks every year and pays the school district $7,500 for use and $2,500 for capital improvements. If no repairs are made to the pool, the $2,500 just gains interest.
Last year, the city did not use the pool, but has already paid the district $10,000 to go toward repairing the pool. The school district will now come up with a long-term plan so that payment from the city will be consistent and the city will know when repairs will be needed.
Both groups also agreed to write letters to Sen. Bruce McPherson, R-Santa Cruz, and Assemblyman Peter Frusetta,! R-Tres Pinos, to ask that the state make a provision that; old, but still useful, portable: buildings at the school can be: used for office space or libraries. •
Currently, the district must; eliminate 36 portables that are; 20 or more years old as a stipulation of the state giving it. money it received for building.. Antonio Del Buono Elementary School. Both Council and’ school board members would like to keep the portables for’ use other than for classrooms.?.
The two bodies are also
working with a police officer dedicated to the schools. Officer Mike Terasaki made a presentation to the school board and told members that he has made 19 arrests since lie began: on Jan. 4, and that students seem to appreciate his presence.

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