I am baaaaack! Apparently without realizing it I took a blog vacation starting in June 2012, and I am just getting back to it. So what did I do on my time off?
· Sent my oldest child off to college. My gal is doing really well. She selected a small liberal arts college in the Pacific Northwest, where she is now nearly two months into her sophomore year. She was back over the summer, and spent about 12 hours of every day at Herkner Pool either teaching swim lessons or assistant coaching the Redwood City Sharks.
· Started my youngest child at Woodside High School, where he is now a sophomore. Freshman year was great – mainly due to WildCats Frosh/Soph Football. Last year they had a great season, ending as Division Champions. This year is looking to be good as well.
· My husband was on about twenty business trips (probably more), mostly it seems to Beijing. Feel free to ask him about the air quality.
And what of me? I still work at Stanford University and am still enjoying spending my off-hours on education policy. And it’s been a pretty exciting 16 months! There’s really too much to recap, so instead I’ll just cite my top three favorite recent developments:
1. Proposition 30 – Passed! While our Redwood City Schools won’t see tremendous immediate financial effects, they will benefit over the long term. Thankfully because of many committed residents, Measure W, the first parcel tax for Redwood City Schools, passed as well in June 2012. I helped raise funds for this campaign and enjoyed working with so many great people on this important cause.
2. Governor Brown is a rebel! Having grown up during his first governorship in the 1970’s I already knew that he follows his own course. But the recent throw down with US Secretary of Education Arnie Duncan over testing has been – frankly – delightful. It appears as though there shall be a testing reprieve while California regroups and figures out how to implement and fully fund a new testing system.
I have thrown in my hat as a candidate in the
race underway to serve as a trustee for the Sequoia Union High School District!
This district spans eight communities: Belmont/Redwood Shores, San Carlos,
Redwood City, Woodside, Atherton, Menlo Park, Portola Valley, and East Palo
Alto. I am running against two incumbents, for one of two seats on the five
member board. As loyal readers know, I have spent the last 14 years
volunteering for our students and schools. I believe this experience has given
me many valuable skills that would be an asset on the Sequoia Union High
School Board. Whether it is deciphering budgets, working with faculty and
administration on policy and curriculum initiatives, or listening to and
problem-solving with parents and community members, Redwood City has been my
There is another reason to run: 40% of the students in the high school district live in Redwood City and the majority of the district’s facilities are located in Redwood City, yet none of the current five member board lives here. I think we need to ensure that Redwood City has a voice in the conversation about how our tax dollars are used to educate our kids.
I am looking forward to updating you all with education news as we go into a really exciting, transformative year for Redwood City, and for California.