Board meeting: January 27

Tonight in a nutshell:

  • We approved the Public Education Enrichment Fund (PEEF) spending plan in time to forward it across the street to the Board of Supervisors, with one amendment: an additional $150,000 out of reserves to fund a full-time grant writer — a position that we hope will pay for itself and then some.

  • We approved a spending plan for an Art and Music Block Grant from the state, and the annual audit conducted by our independent auditor (they say our books are in good shape financially, which is more than many districts can say one year into this multi-year budget crisis).
  • We heard a presentation on the district’s new plan to upgrade our network capability (Click here to download the powerpoint presentation). This is kind of like upgrading the foundation for your house: expensive and boring when taken by itself, but investing in this area is going to allow us to do many more exciting things with curriculum than we can currently. Right now, most schools max out their bandwidth (creaky old 1.5 Mbps T-1 lines, for those of you who care about these things) every day. If you have DSL or cable Internet access at home, you probably have access to more bandwidth than an entire SFUSD school with perhaps 100 students, teachers and other staff trying to access the Internet all at the same time.  The funding source for this initiative is parcel tax funds – thanks again to the voters of San Francisco!
  • A RAVE award was presented to a teacher at Monroe ES for her great work in engaging and educating students;
  • The charter application for Escuela del Pueblo de San Francisco–a Waldorf-inspired, Spanish-immersion charter school — was withdrawn by the petitioner, for re-submission at some later date (the petition had been forwarded to the full board with a negative recommendation on Jan. 22 by the Budget and Business Services committee);
  • President Maufas announced the committee lineups for 2009: I am on Budget and Personnel/Labor Relations and will chair Rules. The full committee lineups should be posted tomorrow eventually on the district web site;
  • There was drama during public comment; President Maufas had to use her gavel and clear the room for a few minutes. Video of the meeting is posted now on SFGTV.

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