RICHMOND CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE FORUM

With all of the shelter-in-place restrictions in place these past 6 months, getting our hair cut, traveling, shopping working—they’ve all been curtailed. As bad as all of that is, it’s election season and we have important races on the ballot for Richmond City Council and the WCCUSD Board of Education. Continue reading

WEST COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION CANDIDATE FORUMS (League of Women Voters)

In the Covid world we live in today, it’s difficult to host the type of candidate forums that we’ve become used to.  Instead of gathering in a big room with the candidates sitting at a row of tables with an audience perched in front of them, we have the dreaded Zoom meetings. Instead of hearing from the speakers with a “good morning” what we hear so often is a “can you hear me?” Continue reading

COMMUNITY OVERSIGHT OF $2.4 BILLION WCCUSD SCHOOL BOND PROGRAM

Just a few months ago the voters of West County approved an additional $575 million to add to the $1.8 billion in previously approved bond funds (plus nearly $200 million in state/federal funds for ‘shovel ready’ projects). Proposition 39 (passed in November of 2000) requires an independent community oversight body to ensure that the elected Board members and District staff spend the bond funds following the ballot text approved by the voters as well as the laws of the land. Continue reading

THE FATE OF HILLTOP MALL

REPRINTED FROM THE SAN FRANCISCO BUSINESS TIMES An aerial view of the former Hilltop Mall, now rebranded as the East Bay Science and Technology Center under new plans by the owner to sell or lease the property. Newmark Knight Frank Continue reading

THE WCCUSD BOARD DISCUSSES A PROPOSED PARCEL TAX

Since Sunday evening when Radio Free Richmond posted an article alerting the public to a proposed parcel tax to lessen the budget deficit of the West Contra Costa Unified School District, more than 400 comments were posted on the numerous social media sites. Continue reading

THE WCCUSD’s FISCAL MESS ~ HOW WE GOT THERE

Dr. Wold is the Associate Superintendent for Business Services of the West Contra Costa Unified School District. At the West Contra Costa Unified School District’s Board of Education meeting on Wednesday, July 29th, (starting at 6:30 PM), Item F.2 allows the Board to discuss and possibly vote on placing a parcel tax on the November ballot.  To learn more about this, please review Will The People Support Another School District Tax? on Radio Free Richmond. Dr. Wold tries to explain how school funding is set up and why the District needs the voters to approve another parcel tax. Continue reading

WILL THE PEOPLE SUPPORT ANOTHER SCHOOL DISTRICT TAX?

Up and down California school districts are struggling to avoid bankruptcy court.  Even before the Covid crisis, funding for public schools by both the state and the federal governments has been severely diminished and with the national economy in a full recession, no one should expect funding to increase unless local communities take action to increase the funding through parcel taxes. Continue reading

LIKE LAZURUS RISING FROM THE DEAD

Situated along Richmond’s waterfront lies the family of charter schools owned and operated by AMETHOD Public Schools (AMPS):  Benito Juarez Elementary, Richmond Charter Academy and John Henry High School. Continue reading

POMP AND CIRCUMSTANCE—COVID STYLE

There are several critical components included in the transition from a high school senior to the real world:  Prom, Graduation. Grad Night (and for some, the pre-graduation parties). Continue reading

FEEDING THE HUNGRY

Even in the best of times, more than 80% of the students in West County are on the Free and Reduced Lunch Program.  They rely on the breakfasts and lunch they receive from the school district—often with those meals being the only meals they eat each day. Continue reading
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