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News

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Campaign yard signs are just one expenditure for candidates during election season.

Election finance filings are in, and Los Altos appears to be hosting a few financially lopsided races.

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Schools

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Bullis Charter School students wear their school spirit clothing to greet their mascot Oct. 3 in celebration of being named a National Blue Ribbon School.

Blach Intermediate, Egan Junior High and Bullis Charter schools ea...

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Community

Sports

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High running back Austin Johnson goes for a big gain after evading Los Altos High defensive tackle Phil Alameda in Friday’s game. Johnson scored two touchdowns for the Spartans.

After unveiling its wildc...

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Comment

Logan, McClatchie, Peruri for LASD board: Editorial

This is a crucial time for the Los Altos School District. Its leadership faces the challenge of balancing enrollment growth versus maintaining the small, neighborhood schools that make it a very popular district to attend. The district must also adap...

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Special Sections

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Tandava Waldon, left, manager of East West Bookstore on Castro Street in Mountain View, works with a customer. Waldon said the recently approved minimum-wage hike will have little impact on his business. “It’s not such a...

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Business

Delay Social Security? An easy way to decide

One of the most heatedly debated questions regarding Social Security is when to start.

You have the option of initiating benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. The longer you wait, the larger the monthly payment you will receive over your...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

Suzanne Monica Dimm Specht passed Tuesday, Sept. 9th at the age of 84. Sue was born on April 21, 1930 in Portland, Oregon. After graduating from the University of Oregon in with a degree in Music, Sue taught in a little town called Clatskanie, Oreg...

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Travel

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening


Courtesy of Sally Brew
North Korea is home to many monuments honoring its “Dear Leaders,” left.

In August, I traveled for 11 days with MIR Corp. to North Korea, a fascinating country that is almost completely cut off from the rest of the world. ...

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Stepping Out

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto


Courtesy of José Luis Moscovich
West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” is slated to open Friday night in Palo Alto and run through Oct. 26.

West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” (“The Troubadour”) is scheduled to open this weekend...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Letters to the Editor

Why is Egan ‘campsite’ still under consideration?

I am a parent of two and reside within the Los Altos School District. Both of my children attend Bullis Charter School. I attended the district board-hosted session that included breakout groups to explore solutions to the charter school facilities issue, specifically the group exploring the option of swapping campuses with Santa Rita School. Given what has transpired since, I want to raise an important point.

Our group of approximately 25 parents represented a mix of schools, Santa Rita being most heavily represented. We had a constructive dialogue. While we didn’t agree on all points, the room unanimously agreed that a key message to bring back to the board was: The Bullis Charter School campus, or the “campsite,” as it was referred to multiple times, was not suitable for any student, not Santa Rita students, not charter school students, not any other students in the district.

Since these breakout sessions, the Santa Rita swap option has been removed from the list. However, other options involving the charter school’s remaining at the campsite are still very much under consideration.

Interestingly, until 2007-2008 I had planned and assumed that both my children would attend Almond School. When the district realignment moved my children from being able to walk to Almond to needing to drive to Springer School, I was triggered to explore alternatives. I stumbled upon Bullis Charter School while I was waitlisted for Springer. I made the decision to send my son to the charter school without any understanding of political issues. I was and am just a parent who wants my kids to have a good education in a healthy environment.

I just don’t understand how we have come to this. I am not someone who has ever asked for more than my fair share. I am only asking for my children to be treated as fairly as any other child in the district. My breakout session, dominated by non-charter school parents, spoke loudly and clearly about the inadequacy of the charter school “campsite” and could not get comfortable with the idea of their children using this campus. We passed this unanimous message on to the board. Why then is the “campsite” still a consideration for charter school students?

Andrea Morokutti

Los Altos

A student addresses schools’ conflict

I am currently an eighth-grader at Egan Junior High School. My family has recently moved to Los Altos, and I am disturbed by the tension between Bullis Charter School and the Los Altos School District. The charter school has taken some of our land, including the tennis courts and one-half of the track. They are currently deciding on whether to move to Covington School or Santa Rita School, which is where my sister goes.

I don’t want the charter school to move to Santa Rita, but there are also many students at Covington who will not have a place to go if the charter school moves there.

I believe the reason the charter school always wants to expand is because it constantly expands its student population. Therefore, I believe that the charter school needs to stop expanding its student population or at least slow it down. As a result, the school would not have as big a reason to expand into district schools.

I don’t think that Bullis Charter School should keep trying to get land from other schools, because it makes many students and parents at other schools angry. This would lead to some parents filing lawsuits against Bullis Charter School, which is what is happening right now.

We should spend the money on improving education, not on lawyer’s fees.

I believe that Bullis Charter School should reduce the amount of people it takes in every year.

Kerry Liu Los Altos

Holiday spirit should include courtesy

The holidays can bring stress from last-minute-gift nerves, family expectations and maybe even some sad memories. But this gives people absolutely no right to take out their frustrations on their friendly neighborhood Starbucks barista.

While sitting at the counter for only an hour, not only did I witness customers use verbally abusive tones because of the short wait during the coffee rush hour, but one customer even went so far as to insult and threaten the barista due to her own error!

Is the world’s biggest problem really that you don’t have your latte?

Everyone has a bad day from time to time, but this does not give adults permission to use childish and degrading behavior when interacting with others.

We should all remember this lesson – especially in light of the recent events that showcase the harsh realities of the world.

Why not make the day a little bit brighter simply by being nice?

Alyssa Jacobson

Los Altos

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