Scripps Ranch Schools Committee (SRSC)

In the last few months your SR Schools Committee (SRSC) worked to strengthen our school cluster and promote the district’s promise to place students first.

Helping Our “Sister Cluster”

We would like to thank our schools for separating and bagging all the “lost and forgotten” clothing, water bottles, lunch boxes, and more during the end of each semester and before major school breaks. We delivered more than 150 bags of items to our sister cluster—Crawford—and the schools in that area. These students and families are forever appreciative.

We learned that the donated water bottles are such treasures that we are thinking of holding a water bottle collection soon. Until then, we ask that you participate in a Summer Book Drive for these kids, so they can continue reading through the summer. Look for boxes in your school’s office in these last couple of weeks and share the magic of reading.

District Budget

Our meetings consist of parents, principals, our area superintendent, Fabiola Bagula, and guest speakers. A central topic has been our district’s $124 million shortfall. Kevin Beiser, our elected area school board trustee, and Tamara Hurley, our Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) and Scripps Ranch Cluster Congress representative, presented reasons why we are in this immense budget deficit.

Kevin shared these thoughts, “With regard to the presentation and question and answer session at the SRSC, I enjoyed the robust conversation. I do not agree with all parts of the current budget proposal, however, it is a fiscally responsible balanced budget with more than $62 million in reductions from the central office, while honoring our commitment to small class sizes and continuing elementary PE and prep time teachers, all of which I am committed to supporting.”

Home Period for Seniors

Another concern came up at our meeting recently after Scripps Ranch High School students were informed that the “Assigned Time Home” option, which had existed for years, would no longer be available for seniors. This is when seniors who have met all graduation requirements take five classes instead of the usual six and have a period “off.” It enables students to work, volunteer, study, or play sports.

Although Gloria Tran, veteran school/student advocate, worked for months to oppose the decision the issue was brought to the SRSC for support. It was suggested that a petition be started, and more than 450 signatures were collected in 16 hours!

However, the petition apparently held no weight and the district stood by its decision. This led to many emails and hours of phone calls and meetings advocating for all seniors in the district to have the option of Assigned Time Home—which does not cost the district money. If the option is not available at SRHS, it could cost the district nearly $100,000 to provide a class for students. Most districts in California, including Poway Unified, allow students to have this option.

Throughout these conversations our district representatives gave conflicting, and sometimes incorrect, information. Just prior to press time, Gloria and I had a very productive meeting with a district representative. We are now working with the district to revise the policy. If successful, it will allow students to have the Assigned Time Home option starting as soon as this coming school year.

It has been a frustrating road, but we feel this is an important option for seniors who already face the anxiety of maintaining strong grades while taking multiple AP and college classes, as well as the time-consuming task of filling out college applications. That’s not to mention doing all the “musts” to become a well-rounded student demanded by colleges.

Our school board trustee Kevin Beiser said he supports Assigned Time Home. He has been active in the process to keep this option available to students, and we thank him for his time addressing this issue.

SRHS Principal Retiring

We want to thank Scripps Ranch High School principal Ann Menna, who retires at the end of this school year. Ann has been at SRHS for six years and has taken the school to new academic heights. She has been with the San Diego Unified School District for 37 years. We wish Ann well on her exciting new journey!

The district has pledged that the community and parents will have input into selecting the next principal. We look forward to productive engagement, as we seek a principal with high school experience who can continue to lead SRHS students on the path to success.

Join Our Meetings!

We invite you to attend our meetings and listen to the latest school and district happenings, as well as bring your suggestions and concerns, so we can continue to make a difference. The SRSC, a standing committee of the Scripps Ranch Civic Association, meets on the third Wednesday of each month during the school year at 4:30 pm at Marshall Middle School. If you have any questions, please email me at [email protected]

Jen Marchesini, SRSC Co-chair