The following individuals and organizations deserve either
CHEERS or JEERS this week:
The following individuals and organizations deserve either CHEERS or JEERS this week:
JEERS: For the growing tension between parents who want appropriate challenges for high-achieving students and the Gilroy School District. Parents at both the elementary school and high school level are frustrated over what they see as a lack of responsiveness from the district with regards to the gifted and talented pull-out program on the elementary level and the honors-level courses at the high school level. The district has promised parents that the GATE program would be strengthened and that honors programs at GHS would get a speedy and fair review. So far, the parents have reason to be frustrated. If the district doesn’t take positive action soon, the simmering controversy will surely spill over into a full-blown protracted battle. Is the district that willing to shoot itself in the foot?
JEERS: For the Santa Clara Valley Water District for proposing to extend its own authority over land flanking waterways in the county. SCVWD wanted to extend the boundary where it has authority to review land-use proposals from 50 to 150 feet. That’s a very significant leap which involves almost every land-use – commercial, agriculture and residential – proposal in the county. For the water district to begin such a grandiose move without properly consulting the numerous agencies and interest groups that would be affected is irresponsible. Thankfully, the district has backed away after an initial uproar and has agreed to develop a plan to solicit input.
CHEERS: For the Gilroy Chamber of Commerce which annually recognizes outstanding members of our community for service and contribution. This year’s winners:
• Man of the Year: City Administrator Jay Baksa
• Woman of the Year: Businesswoman and super volunteer Jodi Heinzen
• Small Business of the Year: Baskets by Design
• Large Business of the Year: Calpine
• Volunteer of the Year: Greg Edgar
• Educators of the Year:
Gilroy High School science teacher Ron Kinoshita and Brownell Middle School language arts instructor Ron Ayala
Congratulations to all for joining a distinguished list. It is individuals and organizations like these which make Gilroy a special community. It’s the perfect time of year to say a simple thank you.
CHEERS: For the continued focus by the Chamber and city leaders on downtown improvement. Re-build it right and they will come to shop and admire a city that has worked hard to make the downtown its soul.