Community Briefed on New Middle School

Representatives from the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) attended the SRCA meeting on Tuesday night, June 10, and updated the community about progress on the new middle school. We thank Jim Geldert, lead architect for the school; Lou Smith, head of Prop MM; and Katherine Nakamura, our SDUSD board member, for taking time from their busy schedules to describe the present status of the middle school and critical issues that need to be resolved.

Geldert indicated that planning for the new school, to be located adjacent to Alliant International University (AIU), is progressing on schedule. Demolition of the site will begin next summer and the school will open two years later in September 2006. Smith acknowledged that the SDUSD is acquiring the site via eminent domain and is in court to finalize this process. The acquisition is a friendly condemnation, but the purchase price is being defined by the court.

When constructed, the school will occupy slightly less than 17 acres and have a core capacity of 1,600 students. Opening enrollment at the school is projected to be about 1,450. Space has been left to add three 2-story portables which will increase capacity of the school to 1,800 students in case of emergency. As Lou Smith said, the SDUSD does not want to make a 100-year mistake in designing the school, realizing that it likely will be used in many different ways over the next several decades.

The 1,600-student capacity will be achieved via permanently constructed classrooms, grouped into three 3-story houses. The best way to group students is still being determined, e.g., having a single grade in one house, or commingling all grades in each house.

When asked if the middle school would meet all the SDUSD educational specifications, Geldert acknowledged that it would not. In particular, the school will have a reduced size of performing arts space. Room has been left on the campus for the specified facility, but it presently is not funded. Nakamura stated that the SDUSD would provide a middle school that fully meets its educational requirements, but not necessarily a school that meets all of the desires of Scripps Ranch residents.

Other aspects that have been deleted from the design because community funds have not been forthcoming include: 1,400 square feet of circulation space in the houses; 850 square feet in the administration building; the size of the amphitheater; the amount of parking; and, 1.5 acres of play fields. Geldert indicated that most of these items were designed so that they could be re-included if the community decides to support the school with capital funding.

On June 17, Rec Council and SRCA President Marc Sorensen, Bob Dingeman, and our council district representative, Clint Carney, met with the director of the Park and Recreation Department, Ellen Oppenheim, the deputy director for the Landscape Maintenance Assessment District (MAD)/Open Space, and the Park Dept. planner. This was a productive meeting in which was discussed all the Park and Rec land on the Ranch, their status, and revising the account for them.

This was a needed accomplishment so we could specifically ask the city to determine their ability to support negotiating a Joint-Use Maintenance Agreement with the SDUSD for the new middle school fields. This agreement could then trigger funding action from the Scripps Ranch Special Park and Recreation Fund as a contribution to the school’s functioning and funding.

This would involve about five acres of new playing fields for community use. A follow-up report will be made when the city is able to confirm their participation in this Joint-Use Agreement, all within our total "city authorized park acreages."

Smith indicated that the decisions regarding funding and final design need to be made by November 2003 when the design and build contract is prepared. The SRCA Newsletter and website [] will keep you up-to-date on this important issue.

Community Forum

The Navy is soliciting public input regarding the Draft Environmental Impact Study (DEIS) to build new housing for married military personnel–grades E1-E6–on the East Miramar base. Scripps Ranch residents are urged to submit their questions, either verbally or in written form, on Thursday, July 24, at an important Community Forum at the Scripps Ranch Library from 6 to 9 pm.

Experts on various aspects of regional military housing will be available. Community participation is crucial, since it occurs under the public comment period for the DEIS, and, by law, issues must be addressed in the final EIS.

The sites under consideration are:

  1. A location off Highway 52, opposite Santo Drive in Tierrasanta;
  2. A site south of McMillin’s StoneBridge Estates development and exiting onto Pomerado Road; and,
  3. A site near the UCSD Research Station and Alliant International University–this site’s entrance and exit is to be through the base and not on Pomerado Road.

Please plan to attend this Community Forum. Military representatives from Washington, D.C., will be among those available to answer your questions.

Field Closures

Fields at parks and schools throughout Scripps Ranch will be closed for periods this summer for maintenance and turf renovation. Here is the closure schedule:

  • Community Park, Field #3–Monday, June 16, until Sunday, July 13;
  • Community Park, Field #1–Monday, June 16, until Friday, Sept. 5;
  • Community Park, Field #2 (Marshall)–Monday, June 16, until Friday, July 18. These dates are tentative due to lighting installation;
  • Cypress Canyon Park–Monday, July 14, until Sunday, Aug. 3;
  • Jerabek Park–Monday, July 14, until Sunday, Aug. 3;
  • Jerabek Elementary School–Monday, Aug. 4, until Sunday, Aug. 24;
  • SRHS soccer field–Monday, Aug. 4, until Friday, Aug. 22;
  • SRHS softball field–Monday, June 16, until Friday, July 11;
  • Spring Canyon Park–Monday, July 14, until Sunday, Aug. 3; and,
  • Dingeman Elementary School–Monday, June 16, until Sunday, July 13.

This is being done now because the best time to renovate is when the grass is growing and, for bermuda grass, that’s the summer. Also, most of our youth leagues don’t play in the summer.

Rattlesnake Dangers

With all of the rain and vegetation, and now the sun, we are experiencing a rash of reports of fairly large rattlesnakes coming into yards. This is normal and wherever there is a lot of construction, it seems to disrupt the pattern and they seek greener pastures–your backyard.

There may be an initial tendency to get a shovel and kill the snake, but don’t do it! Call Animal Control at 236-2341, and they are usually prompt in coming out and safely removing the snake. We tend to forget that this is snake and coyote territory; just do not feed them or attempt to kill them. Let the experts do the removal and return them to the wild.

Cyber Neighborhood Watch

Starting last month, the San Diego Police Department began an email notification service that provides recent crime activity in selected neighborhoods. The city says the free service, called Neighborhood eWatch, will act as a "cyber" neighborhood watch, providing citizens with information to help reduce crime in their neighborhoods and to increase interaction between neighbors and police.

It is supposed to notify you about a number of crimes ranging from murder and robbery to auto burglary and driving under the influence (DUI). You may choose the crimes you would like to be notified about. The website address is []. You can select three sites per email address, and there is coverage up to a one-mile radius.

Korea, The Forgotten War

On Friday, July 25, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice at Pammunjon, Korea, ending a brutal and costly war. The unique feature of this war–often called "the forgotten war"–was that it contained in its allied ranks American, British, Korean, French, Ethiopian, Turks, Philippine, Greek, and Australian troops.

There will be many parades and other celebrations throughout the country, including San Diego, and also in Korea, remembering the valor and sacrifice of so many thousands to preserve the freedom of South Korea from Communist aggression. The brave men and women who answered our nation’s call to defend freedom in a faraway land have an honored place in American history.

Many paid with their lives, and all who served earned our nation’s gratitude. Take a moment to thank a Korean War veteran–they are fading into history and this 50th anniversary is your chance to "join hands with our history."

July 4th Fun in Hoyt Park

The 4th of July in Scripps Ranch would not be complete without a visit to the beer garden in Hoyt Park. This year the Scripps Ranch Old Pros have further enhanced the ambience of the garden by adding an authentic three-piece steel drum band. The trio known as Steel The Band will play in the beer garden from 9:30 to 11:30 am. There is no finer way to celebrate Independence Day than to quench your thirst while swaying to the soothing tones of Caribbean steel drums.

Admittance to the beer garden is included at no additional charge for those who participate in the Scripps Ranch Old Pros 2-mile Fun Run, 10K, or any of the three bicycle rides–12, 28, or 50 miles. You must be 21 years of age with valid ID to enter the beer garden.

Other featured foods in the park include: Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza, world famous lamb cannelloni from Yanni’s Bistro, and grilled barbecue chicken from Dad’s Sports Bar and Grill. For more details, contact Kevin Clark at 566-7963 or [[email protected]].

New Band for Symphony in the Park

If you frequent the Coyote Café or other music venues up and down the north coast of San Diego County, you are probably familiar with The Jerry McCann Band. They have made appearances at festivals and gatherings such as ours all over the county.

I think you will hear quite a mix of sounds. You may recognize some of their music as pop, rhythm and blues, and some good ol’ rock and roll. They have a wide following and a great variety to please mixed audiences. The Jerry McCann Band will perform for us on Sunday, July 13, at 6 pm in Hoyt Park.

We’re excited to bring a new band to Symphony in the Park. In fact, our next three concerts feature bands new to us. The Corvettes perform on Sunday, Aug. 17, and Left Coast Tropical Fun performs on Sunday, Sept. 7, both at 6 pm.

We hope you will find one of our volunteers at a concert and let us know what you think of this season’s lineup. Find your way down to Hoyt Park early. The park is located where Aviary and Canyon Lake Drives intersect. It’s okay to put your blanket down early in the day, then come back at concert time. For questions, call our chairs, Joyce Wulkowitz at 566-4206 or Scott Pritchard at 578-2536.

Fire Station 37 is Cooking

Look out Scripps Ranch, our local firefighters are hot on the grill! Our very own Fire Station 37 is cooking with our local resident Marnie on her cooking show called "Friday’s With Marnie" in the Star 100.7 "The Zone."

Our local firefighters, Captain Warren Geiske, Steve Swetavage, and Duaine Williams, will heat up "The Zone" with their secret recipes live from Fire Station 37. You can see Marnie and the firefighters in action online at [], and download "The Zone," a free interactive software. Don’t miss this segment on Friday, July 4!

Wrestling For Kids

A two-day wrestling summer camp for kids, kindergarten through high school, will be held at Scripps Ranch High School (SRHS) on Friday, July 11, and Saturday, July 12. For more information, call 619-723-8807 or email [[email protected]].

The Scripps Ranch Kids Wrestling Club practices every Tuesday and Thursday from 6 to 7:30 pm until Friday, July 25, in the SRHS wrestling room–behind the gym. Any student, kindergarten through 8th grade, interested in joining should call 619-723-8807 or stop by the wrestling room during our practices.

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