AP Testing Latest

Scripps Ranch High’s new school year is starting with a positive atmosphere, thanks to interim co-principals Walter Fairley and Beverly Greco. While there is still construction, which added to the long lines at Kick-Off, the principals told us they have an open-door policy for you to discuss any issue with them. Please see their welcome messages on page 23.

Meanwhile, the AP testing fiasco is still affecting families. School officials told us that 592 retests were taken in July and August out of 847 invalidated exams. To update you, we asked the school district for answers to lingering questions.

For the hundreds of parents, students, residents, and reporters who attended the community meeting in July, they heard superintendent Cindy Marten say she would create a claims system for families to be reimbursed for costs connected to the invalidated tests. Included could be cancelled vacations, effects on summer jobs, and other expenses families incurred.

We asked the district about the progress regarding setting up that claims process and received the following reply from the district’s director of communications, Maureen Magee: “After speaking with Legal and Risk Management, it was determined that the district’s existing Claims Liability process was the best and most effective way to handle these claims.” While laborious, families who suffered losses should file claims.

Here are some facts from the district regarding claims filed as a result of the AP tests being invalidated.

Claims Information

  • As of press time, the district has receive 10 claims, totalling $551,709.12.
  • To file a claim go to: District’s Risk Management page at www.sandi.net/staff/risk-management/forms; the Liability Claim Form is at www.sandi.net/staff/sites/default/files_link/staff/docs/risk-management/districtliability/claim-form.pdf.
  • The deadline to file a claim for the AP issue is Dec. 31, 2017.
  • By law, the district must provide an initial response to any claim filed within 45 days of receiving it. After that, the district says claims will be processed as efficiently as possible.

All claims will be reviewed by an independent claims adjuster. If you have questions, please contact Carol Komaki at 627-7346 or [email protected] The district said that any money paid out does not affect student funding. It will come from a liability insurance fund.

If a student did not retest, parents will be refunded the AP test fee of $93 for each exam. The district was waiting until the restests were complete prior to addressing this. The refunds will be automatically processed and mailed to the address on the student’s answer sheet. You do not need to file paperwork or take any further action.

At a community meeting to introduce themselves to parents, students, and community members, the SRHS interim co-principals said they will ensure that future testing complies with College Board regulations. They will set in place a process that will be followed by the permanent principal and school administration. In fact, they said they spent time physically measuring rooms in preparation for the PSAT to be given in October. They also said they asked the district for personnel to help set up the rooms properly.

We will continue to monitor this situation. For updates, visit the Scripps Ranch Civic Association Facebook page.

Project Moving Ahead

The community is still waiting for the release of the draft environmental impact report (EIR) on the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) Scripps Mesa Joint Occupancy “Apartment Tower” project. It may be published by the time this update is printed. The public then has a 45-day period to submit comments on the accuracy and sufficiency of the report. We expect that the district will schedule a public hearing when the draft EIR is available. Check for updates on the Scripps Ranch Civic Association (SRCA) Facebook page and SRCA emails. All of the project’s environmental review process documents are at www.sandiegounified.org/environmental-reviews.

Environmental studies are expensive and it’s unclear whether the reimbursement agreement with the Monarch Development Group will cover the total cost. When a final EIR is published, the school board will schedule a vote to certify the final EIR and approve the project and post a Notice of Determination (NOD) document. Any action involving a challenge under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) must be filed generally within 30 days of the filing of the NOD.

Meanwhile, at the July 25, 2017, board meeting, the school board approved a proposal to select a joint occupancy plan and developer for the Revere Center property in Linda Vista. During this joint occupancy request for proposal process (RFP), the district met with the community to gather ideas. They also followed up with the community on those ideas and received a letter of support from the Linda Vista Town Council.

In contrast, for the RFP process for the Scripps Mesa property, the community was not provided any follow up on its ideas and project plans or allowed the opportunity to provide a letter of support from our SRCA. No way, right? Get out the red sharpie and write “F” for FAILED, did not meet requirements, on the Scripps Mesa Joint Occupancy “Apartment Tower” project proposal!

Voice of Scripps Ranch is a coalition of Scripps Ranch residents for the reasonable use of the property at the Innovations Academy site at the corner of Scripps Poway Parkway and Spring Canyon Road. The district’s proposed use is a joint occupancy redevelopment project with the Monarch Development Group that includes a 300,000-square-foot, four-story, 264-apartment complex; a 4,000-square-foot STEAM facility; 2,000 square feet of commercial use; and a 1,500-square-foot community garden. For more information, visit www.voiceofscrippsranch.com.

“Outstanding” Safety Group

Congratulations to the Scripps Ranch Fire Safe Council (SRFSC) for being awarded the outstanding Fire Safe Council for San Diego County. There are about 30 councils in the county, and we were awarded the best this year!

Our mission is to help residents learn ways to protect their homes and families. A fire starts with a spark—a carelessly tossed cigarette, a downed power line, or an untended fire. Within minutes flames race up dry hillsides, gobble brush, trees, and, worse, homes burn and lives are lost. It could happen anywhere, especially in California as we’ve seen recently.

Fire is a natural part of California ecosystems, a force that evolved to cleanse and restore them. The challenge is to learn to live in a fire-adapted landscape. Fire protection begins at home. Steps to take around your home include:

  • Clear leaves and debris from roofs, gutters, porches, and decks.
  • Screen in areas below patios and decks with wire mesh to prevent combustible material from accumulating.
  • Remove flammable material—such as wood or propane tanks—within 30 feet of your home and buildings.
  • Prune trees so the lowest branches are six to 10 feet from the ground.

We can’t stress these safety measures enough. The more actions a community takes, the more fire-adapted it becomes. Visit www.fireadapted.org for details. And check out our website at www.srfiresafe.org, like us on Facebook, and sign up for our golf tournament on Saturday, Oct. 21. For questions, please contact us at 201-3711 or [email protected]

Neighbors Help Fight Crime

I’m happy to report that our 7th Annual National Night Out “Scripps Ranch-style” was a huge success. We had 41 block parties sign up on our website, an increase of 57% over last year! There also were a good number of unregistered parties that were apparent while Scripps Ranch Civic Association (SRCA) volunteers were driving around that evening.

We had drop-ins by Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman, Stations 33 and 44 firefighters, Councilmember Mark Kersey, and Lance Witmondt, chief of staff for Assemblymember Brian Maienschein. SRCA president Bob Ilko and SRCA district representatives also stopped by.

Thank you to all those who organized their neighborhoods and participated this year. This is why Scripps Ranch is the best community in San Diego, with one of the lowest crime rates in the city. In fact, there were no reported burglaries for the month of July! Keep up the good work.

For emergencies, dial 911. For non-emergencies and to report suspicious behavior, call the non-emergency line at 858-484-3154. For questions, email us at [email protected] and visit www.scrippsranch.org/watch. While there, sign up to receive SRCA community emails that let you know about crime in our area.

Cheryl Shaw, SRCANW Chair

Neighborhood Safety

Improving public safety is one of my top priorities on the San Diego City Council. Therefore, I am proud to support community crime-prevention programs by funding nearly 50 Neighborhood Watch signs for Scripps Ranch. If you and your neighbors are interested in organizing a Neighborhood Watch, find out more at www.scrippsranch.org/watch.

Everyone is encouraged to take steps to deter burglary: lock your home and car doors, and do not leave anything valuable in your car. If you have any questions, please contact my office at [email protected] or 619-236-6655.

Council President Pro Tem Mark Kersey, District 5

Help Keep SR Safe

Want to volunteer? The Retired Senior Volunteer Patrol (RSVP) might be the answer. We’ve been driving around Scripps Ranch for more than 20 years! Really! More than 20 years and we’ve been doing it with fabulous volunteers. You’ve seen our white cars patrol the neighborhood, but we need more volunteers.

We not only patrol our area, but we check on our elderly neighbors who have signed up for the You Are Not Alone program. We also do vacation home checks. That can be simply driving by or walking around the house, checking doors, and looking for packages on the front step. We drive by all the schools, shopping centers, banks, parks, and are visible throughout Scripps Ranch.

It’s easy to join RSVP. You must be 50 years or older, retired or semiretired, and have a valid California driver’s license. For more details, please contact Jim Schulte at 538-8120 or drop by the storefront at 8450-A Mira Mesa Boulevard, across from Mira Mesa High School. Volunteer now—it’s good and good for you.

Pat Clark, RSVP Board Member

Summer is Never Over in Scripps Ranch

September brings a return to the routine as we push into fall. Still that doesn’t stop the music! Join us for the last Symphony in the Park concert of this summer season on Sunday, Sept. 10, at 6 pm in Hoyt Park. The Mighty Untouchables will play everything from Motown to classic rock, along with Latin, country, pop hits, and much more. The concert is brought to us by Anderson Plumbing, Heating & Air. As always, no plastic tarps or pets, and please keep the high-back chairs in the back and to the sides.

Don’t forget our Holiday Concert in December! It’s not too late to donate either. Symphony in the Park is self-supporting through individual contributions and the generosity of businesses that support our community. The all-volunteer organization is a registered 501 (3)(c) nonprofit, making your donations tax deductible. Just go to www.symphonyinthepark.org to help.

See you in Hoyt Park!

Symphony in the Park Committee

YMCA in Scripps Ranch

Youth sports leagues at the Rancho Y Scripps site are some of the best ways to keep children physically active while making new friends and learning new skills, teamwork, and sportsmanship. Our eight-week fall leagues are for ages 4 to 13 and include soccer, basketball, or flag football. Registration is now open. Leagues start Saturday, Oct. 14.

We kick off our fall sports leagues at the YMCA Scripps fields with free clinics on Saturday, Sept. 23! No sign up is required. Our soccer free clinic is from 9 to 10 am, and basketball is from 10:30 to 11:30 am.

We know committing to long program sessions might be challenging, so we offer sports classes that enable your child to experience a sport in a shortened time. If they love the sport, they can continue to the next session. Our sports lessons introduce the basics in younger levels, while advanced levels focus on strategies and building stamina and endurance.

For more information on programs at the Scripps Poway Parkway site, email Ferrari Funches, sports coordinator, at [email protected] or call 484-8788.

SR Farmers Market

A quick reminder to all Scripps Ranch schools and children’s organizations: the farmers market gives free space to help with fundraising or to promote your special event. All are welcome.

We are working to bring in new vendors and create a place for families and friends to meet up. Join us on Saturdays from 9 am to 1:30 pm, with live music starting at 10:30 am. We’re at the corner of Scripps Poway Parkway and Spring Canyon Road. For more details, visit www.SRFM.org.

Scripps Ranch New Business: Newtopia Cyder

Award-winning Cyder Production + Tasting Room

Paying homage to his childhood roots, Rick Moreno, Miramar Ranch Elementary School alumnus, wanted to leave the corporate world to start a company in Scripps Ranch. While traveling, Rick took an interest in exploring, documenting, and collecting new herbs, exotic spices, and plants and botanicals that could be incorporated into cider. Inspired by the Victorian era of people who were traveling plant hunters, Newtopia seeks to craft cider with ingredients peculiar to the American palate.

Featured throughout the taproom is 100-year old reclaimed eucalyptus wood that survived the disastrous 2003 Cedar Fire, another tribute to Rick’s Scripps Ranch roots. Located on Carroll Canyon Road within a eucalyptus-embedded industrial park, Newtopia Cyder features a warm, inviting tasting room that offers diverse and rotating in-house handmade crafted cider. The cider house features a garden patio with rotating food trucks.

The apples are sourced from private crushes at orchards across the West Coast that are shipped to Newtopia’s cellar farm. The apples go through a two- to three-week fermentation process. Newtopia controls the temperature, adds nutrients, and creates magic. Newtopia is a 30-barrel batch cider house featuring New World and Old World American craft ciders.

It is owned and operated by Rick Moreno and wife, Jennifer Hays Moreno. They look forward to serving the community for years to come! For more information, visit www.drinknewtopia.com.