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January 9, 2007 > School board briefs

School board briefs

Submitted By Rick LaPlante

The New Haven Unified School District Board of Education considered a variety of topics during their first meeting of the New Year, Tuesday night, January 2. The board received a report on Professional Learning Communities (PLC), teams of educators collaborating on the challenge of improving student achievement.

PLCs are critical to meeting many of the objectives outlined in the first priority of the district's Strategic Plan, calling for effective implementation of standards-based curriculum and use of assessment points to drive research-based instruction practices that will ensure academic proficiency.

Also on Tuesday night, the board heard a report on enrollment trends and projections for 2007-08, showing a continuation of a steady decline dating back to 1998. Declining enrollment means less money from the state, which is why the board put staffing ratios into place this year and voted to close Cabello Elementary at the end of the current school year and Barnard-White Middle at the end of next year.

District enrollment, which was 12,848 students as of the state-mandated reporting date in October 2005, was 12,659 in October 2006, a drop of 189. Projected enrollment for October 2007 is 12,458, which would be an additional drop of 201. As these figures are used for regular education staffing projections, they do not include special-education and home-schooling students.

The board also approved a plan for use of new counseling monies made available this year by the state. New Haven became one of the first districts to take advantage of the funds by hiring six new counselors.

Finally, board members approved a resolution honoring retiring Union City Police Chief Randy Ulibarri and thanking him for his service to the district, Incoming Chief Greg Stewart received congratulations from the board.

Agendas of all board of education meetings and minutes of past meetings are available on the district website: www.nhusd.k12.ca.us.

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