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August 27, 2008 > News from the New Haven Unified School District

News from the New Haven Unified School District

Submitted By Rick LaPlante

Superintendent search

To facilitate a smooth opening to the school year, Dr. Jaurequi will remain in New Haven through Aug. 31. Deputy Superintendent David Pava formally begins his role as Interim Superintendent on Sept. 1.

The process of hiring a permanent superintendent is well under way. The Board has hired the California School Boards Association (CSBA) executive search service to identify, recruit and put together a pool of candidates. A CSBA consultant will be in the District on Sept. 11 and 12 to receive input from parents, employees and community members. Details about those meetings will be forthcoming.

Screening interviews before the Board and a community advisory committee are scheduled Oct. 16-17, and the Board plans to interview two or three finalists Oct. 18.

Logan's China Trip

James Logan High School's Band and Color Guard returned last week from a two-week trip to China, where they performed as part of the Beijing Olympic Orchestra. Logan, part of what was described as the first foreign group ever to perform in Tiananmen Square, also performed at the Great Wall and several other venues in the days leading up to the Olympics.

Pictures and video from the trip still can be seen at:

Logan graduate Vicky Galindo, a member of the U.S. softball team competing at the Olympics, met President Bush in Beijing, she reported in an e-mail to Logan softball coach Teri Johnson.

"He came out to our practice! It was unreal!" Vicky wrote. "After a few minutes, our team gets called over and President Bush greets every last one of us. He stayed and talked to us for a while (and) told us how proud he was. I must add that while he was talking with us all he had his arm around me the whole time. I thought I was going to die from excitement. Never in my life would I have thought that I would meet the President of the United States."

Vicky and her teammates also met the U.S. basketball team at the Opening Ceremonies, which she called "the defining moment of my softball career." As they entered the stadium, "you could feel the excitement rise. Cameras were flashing crazily as everyone tried to capture the moment before we stepped onto the track and had to put our cameras away. A person started chanting 'USA! USA!' and it didn't take long before the tunnel was echoing with 600 different voices, 'USA! USA! USA!' There are only 600 United States Olympic Athletes and I am one of them. USA! USA! Those three letters will never be the same to me."

School changes mean heavy traffic

With a major modernization project under way at the Cesar Chavez Middle School campus on Hop Ranch Road, CCMS will meet this year at the former Barnard-White Middle School campus on Whipple Road. Morning and afternoon traffic is expected to be extremely heavy on Whipple Road, and parents are advised to allow extra time to drop off and pick up students. In an effort to improve traffic flow, the access road onto campus is now one-way, from Whipple to Tamarack Drive.

The closure of Barnard-White also means increased enrollment at Alvarado Middle School, where traffic also is expected to be extremely heavy at drop-off and pick-up times, and New Haven families also are reminded that state budget cuts have forced the District to eliminate high school busing, meaning more traffic around Logan and Conley-Caraballo. AMS parents and high school parents and students who drive to school also are advised to allow extra time each morning and afternoon.

Logan students are cooking

Logan High students enrolled concurrently through Chabot College in a summer ethnic studies course, cooked and served breakfast to children and their families at Palma Ceia Elementary School in Hayward. The Logan students, who also organized and distributed fruits and vegetables, demonstrated "a high level of social conscious and sense of social justice," Chabot instructor Mark Salinas said, "and worked together to improve the quality of life for kids and their families."

Adult School receives award

Assistant Director Jessica Wilder reports that the New Haven Adult School received the 2007-08 EL Civics Making a Difference in the Community Award from the California Department of Education, in recognition of the "Windows Into Culture" multicultural celebration. ESL and Parenting Program Manager Laura Zaro accepted the award, which is co-sponsored by the Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment Systems, at the CASAS Institute in San Diego.

Future olympians

Competing against prospective future Olympians from 38 countries, Logan High graduate Nkosinza Balumbu won the silver medal in the triple jump at the North America, Central America and Caribbean Athletic Association (NACAC) championships in Toluca, Mexico, Logan Coach Lee Webb reports. Nkosinza, a senior at the University of Arkansas, is the reigning indoor national champion in the triple jump and a five-time All-America selection.

Coach Webb also reports that Ciarra Brewer, who will be a sophomore at Logan this year, won both the Junior Olympic and Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) national championships in the triple jump. She set a national age-group record with a jump of 41 feet, 8 and 1/4 inches. Another Logan sophomore, Tessa Runels, won Junior Olympic championships in both the long jump and the triple jump.

The Union City Raptors boys basketball team including Cesar Chavez Middle School students James Sarmiento, Nicholas Martinez, Clarence Kay and Marcus Franklin and Alvarado Middle School's T.J. Booker, won a gold medal at the AAU Junior Olympics in Reno. The Raptors compiled a perfect 5-0 record, Coach Ernesto Sarmiento reported.

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