It's amazing that we only have two more weeks of school left. It's been a year of accomplishment for our schools, our students, and our community and I, for one, am proud of their accomplishments. Here are a few examples:
- I was impressed at the Milpitas High School Senior Awards Night where nearly half of the graduating class (over 600 graduates) were recognized for their academic and service accomplishments. And, many received various scholarships so that can continue their education.
- Or, impressed with our school bands as they are still amazing as they performed at the recent annual District Concert.
- Or, three of our schools, Weller, Burnett, and Spangler became Distinguished schools, which are considered California's most exemplary and inspiring public schools as they demonstrate significant gains in narrowing the achievement gap.
- And, our PTAs and PTSAs (Parent Teacher Associations & Parent Teacher Student Associations) this year alone have put in over 37,000 volunteer hours to support our schools.
We should be proud of these accomplishments and efforts as a community because these are key ingredients to a strong public schools. And strong public schools means a strong desirable community.
And, there's evidence of that. In our Midtown area, there are plans for 1200 new housing units, and with the housing prices steadily increasing, and the reports of multiple offers in recent housing sales all point to that fact that our community will grow significantly over the next few years. While this is good in one sense, we need to understand the impact of growth, especially to our schools. Our schools, especially in that area, are beginning to experience overcrowding, and we, as a community, need to address that to ensure that our schools continue the tradition of accomplishments.
This is one of the reasons why Measure E on June 5 is so important. It is the solution that addresses this growth right now. And, it is a reasonable request at $95 Million (considering Cupertino's bond measure is for $220 Million, Mountain View's bond measure is for $198 Million) for updating our existing schools to ensure that they are safe, our children have access to today's technology, and address where our new students will go as the community grows. While local taxes are never desirable, it is a way to invest in our community and ensure that we continue to have pride in our public schools and our kids. Note that this is just to address the schools' infrastructure and buildings. This does not address instruction directly (no teachers, administrators' salaries, educational materials, etc.).
So, as we finish up the school year, show off your pride in your community and thank all those who educate our kids and congratulate those students on their accomplishments. If you want to see the schools to continue their growth, make sure to vote YES on Measure E, and make sure to actively participate in the schools in the fall. This is how we can work together to make our community one to be proud of. Have a great summer!
Full disclosure: I am also a proud parent of a graduating MHS senior this year, as well as a proud parent of a elementary band member, a former Weller parent and PTA President, and current PTA president for Randall elementary, so I may be a wee bit biased. :-)