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Superintendent's Newsletter of November 17, 2022
Larkspur-Corte Madera School District
Dear LCMSD Community,
Wow! My favorite email of the week came from SPARK announcing that the Giving Day Goal was exceeded. Your support is critical to the future of our programs and on behalf of LCMSD we greatly appreciate your generosity! Also congratulations to Ms. Peterson’s class (first class to 100%), 7th grade (highest middle school grade), and 2nd grade (highest elementary grade)!
As we head into Thanksgiving Break, I wanted to share several district updates below. Enjoy every moment next week with your family, friends, and/or doing those activities you love.
Dr. Brett Geithman
Visitors Must Wear Badges at All Times
Safety is our top priority. Mitigation strategies such as ID badges, clearly identify who is permitted to be on campus. All visitors on campus during school hours must check in at the main office (with a photo ID) and obtain a badge. The badge must be worn at all times and be clearly visible. If you are on campus without a badge you will be asked to report to the main office to obtain one. This applies to all adults, even if you are a regular volunteer on campus. This is a very important safety measure and will be helpful in the event of an emergency. Here is our badge/check-in policy. Please know this will be strictly enforced beginning on November 28, 2022. Thanks in advance for your cooperation.
CGI Math Coffee Chat
Wondering what that strategy is that your child is using to solve a math problem? Want to learn about the different mathematical strategies students are exposed to in class? Curious about ways that you can support these strategies at home? Well we have a coffee chat aimed to answer those questions! Please join Beth Hawkins, Melanie Harris, and Brett Geithman at Hall Middle School on December 2nd at 8:30 am in Room 405. Parents from all schools are encouraged to participate. Don’t forget to stop by the main office to check in. If you can’t make the chat, we will follow up with a recap video.
LCMSD/RUSD IDT Agreement Update
During last night’s Board meeting I shared the unfortunate news that LCMSD and RUSD were unable to come to an agreement regarding the interdistrict transfer (IDT) program. There was movement on both sides towards an agreement, such as LCMSD’s willingness to move away from our choice option for all families and consider an agreement that includes only current IDTs and siblings. However, there were two fundamental components where the districts were too far apart. The first being an evergreen clause. Simply stated, this is a clause where the agreement would automatically be extended by one year at the conclusion of each school year. This means that an agreement would be no less than four years unless the parties agreed to modify the terms. While both districts see the importance of continuity through Hall Middle, RUSD was unable to agree to the mechanism (an evergreen clause) to ensure continuity. The second, was a fair financial contribution. RUSD’s proposal was to contribute the parcel tax and secured property tax for each household that has an IDT to LCMSD. This equals a total of approximately $63,000. When looking at LCMSD’s actual per pupil expenditures, IDTs from RUSD represent $638,194 per year. With that said, both districts are basic aid; therefore, LCMSD’s proposal was based on a Fair IDT Payment Calculator modeled after basic aid funding. This is where the secured property taxes (not parcel tax) issued to RUSD from the streets identified in the agreement are added up ($888,978) and divided by the total number of RUSD and LCMSD pupils (130) to then create a per pupil expenditure ($6,838). This closely models basic aid funding and controls for the vast differences paid in property taxes due to Prop 13. The 40 students on IDTs would equal a Fair IDT Payment from RUSD to LCMSD in the amount of $273,520. Financially speaking, it is not in the best interest for basic aid districts to accept IDTs; however, please know both LCMSD and RUSD worked extensively to see if an agreement was possible and unfortunately we were too far apart. The video from last night’s LCMSD Board Meeting will be available here within 3 business days.
So where does that leave current RUSD families on IDTs to LCMSD?
If your student is on a one-year conditional IDT and/or if the IDT is expiring at the end of this school year, parents will need to request an IDT release from RUSD and submit it to the LCMSD District Office. These are typically available in January. A RUSD to LCMSD IDT request will be treated the same as a request from any other school district and families will be notified whether or not it was approved within 30 days.
Transfer of Territory Notice of Public Hearing
On November 30, 2022 and December 15, 2022 public hearings will be held regarding the petition to transfer a section of East Corte Madera from Reed Union School District to LCMSD. The redistricting petition was led by a group of East Corte Madera residents and submitted to the Marin County Office of Education who has verified signatures. Here is the notice.
There are many factors that need to be considered regarding the impact of a territory transfer. Therefore, LCMSD will not determine whether or not they support it until after gathering all necessary information to make an informed decision. Such information would be listening to the public hearings, determining the fiscal impact and whether or not LCMSD would remain basic aid funded, and understanding how this would impact bonds and parcel taxes.
Board of Trustees
Annie Sherman, President
Eric Schmautz, Vice President
Monica Cañas, Clerk