music in the park san jose

After a tense and emotional beginning to Wednesday’s meeting,
the Aromas-San Juan Unified School Board of Trustees got past the
resignation of Aromas School Principal Mary-Ann Tucker and took
care of other district business on the agenda.
After a tense and emotional beginning to Wednesday’s meeting, the Aromas-San Juan Unified School Board of Trustees got past the resignation of Aromas School Principal Mary-Ann Tucker and took care of other district business on the agenda.

After an hour of public comment and 90 minutes in closed session, the meeting was adjourned because of raucous behavior on the part of parents who objected to the Board not renewing Tucker’s contract. It was reconvened at 8:45 p.m.

When the Board approved job descriptions for the district’s two principals and Anzar High Director Charlene McKowen, Trustee Jeff Hancock asked why the head of Anzar was referred to as “director” and not “principal,” saying “director” sometimes causes confusion among parents and the community.

McKowen said the staff at Anzar had expressed interest in the designation years ago, and Teachers Union representative Barbara Brown said principals could just as easily be referred to as directors. Trustee Andy Hsia-Coron said there sometimes exists a negative stereotype with the “principal” title.

McKowen said she would see if Anzar’s staff still felt the same way about the title, and the Board dismissed by a 3-2 vote to change the designation to “principal,” with Hancock and Hsia-Coron voting for the change. The Board then voted 4-1 to approve the descriptions as published, with Hancock dissenting. Superintendent Jackie Munoz said she would look into having the three school heads referred to as “administrators” instead of “principal” or “director.”

Munoz asked the Board for direction on planning use of land adjacent to San Juan School and warned trustees to keep in mind the future possibility of the need to expand the school. The Board directed Munoz to look into building athletic fields that would be used by the community and schools. Munoz and parent Bob Quaid will look into getting other groups such as the San Juan Bautista City Council involved to help cover costs.

In discussion of the 2002-03 Second Interim Budget Report, Brown said the district was overprojecting expenditures by several thousands of dollars. Hancock asked Munoz questions about the report and said he felt “uncomfortable” about approving numbers that aren’t “very concrete.” The Board approved the report 4-1 with Hancock dissenting.

The Board approved by 5-0 votes two policies dealing with waivers for the exit exam and the identification of students with special needs. The California High School Exit Exam now requires a school district’s governing board to approve or disapprove waivers for the exam. The State Board of Education administered the waivers last year. The second policy establishes procedures for identifying and educating students who fall under the Section 504 plan.

Presenting a report on the state’s budget problems, Munoz said she has been getting information from a state Assemblyman whose projection for next fiscal year’s budget was “gloomy.” The Assemblyman said he does not expect the state to have a budget passed until next January, if at all, Munoz said.

“He’s frustrated with the lack of progress being made on next year’s budget,” she said.

The Board also approved by a 6-0 vote resolutions recognizing National Bus Drivers Day, Day of the Teacher and Classified Employees Week. The Board also approved 6-0 a resolution in support of health coverage outreach for children. Student Trustee Rose Lee cast the sixth vote.

The Board returned to closed session at 10:50 p.m. to discuss labor negotiations.

The next regular Board meeting is May 7 at Aromas School. The Board will hold a special meeting, which will be open to the public, April 9 at Anzar High School.

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A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.

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