Thu09182014

News

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates


Nine candidates have filed to run for three open seats on the Mountain View City Council in the Nov. 4 election – none of them incumbents. The Town Crier asked them to introduce themselves to readers in the following Q&A format. We knew the...

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Schools

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The Los Altos School District’s newly expanded Facilities Advisory Committee met for the first time last week. The 28-member committee’s first task is to prioritize campus improvement projects.

The Los Altos Scho...

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Community

Sports

New-look Lancers find their footing

New-look Lancers find their footing


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Jenna Adams, left, and Carly Deale attempt to bump the ball Friday night. The juniors combined for 28 kills.

This year’s St. Francis High girls volleyball team faintly resembles last season’s squad ...

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Special Sections

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
An estimated 75 supporters of higher teacher pay turned out for the Sept. 4 Mountain View Whisman School District board meeting.

Teachers, trustees and administrators are recovering from a dramatic Mountain View Whism...

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Business

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Esthetician Marjan Kashi showcases one of the treatment rooms at her new studio, Pure Serenity Skincare at Rancho Shopping Center. Kashi provides services including microdermabrasion and various light and heat energy the...

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Books

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation


During World War II, Virgilia Short Witzel, a young mother and U.S. Navy officer’s wife, grappled on the home front in Menlo Park with wartime rationing, shortages and loneliness. During the ensuing Cold War, she experienced adventure and misadventur...

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People

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

Resident of San Jose and Los Altos, California

July 21, 1931 to August 4, 2014

Born in Arimo, Idaho, to Jerald Emmett and Rebecca Henderson Nelson Christiansen. Raised in Davis and Riverside, California, with summers in Downey, Idaho, and in Loga...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

Pear puts on a pair of plays

Pear puts on a pair of plays


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Dan Kapler (as Teddy) and Betsy Kruse Craig (Trish) star in Pear Avenue Theatre’s “House.”

The Pear Avenue Theatre production of two interlocking comedies by Alan Ayckbourn – “House&...

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Spiritual Life

Back to Church Sunday offers opportunity to recommit

The children in Los Altos are back to school, and I can still hear parents cheering. Summer is officially over, even if the calendar doesn’t quite think so.

Parents have attended Back to School nights to meet their children’s teachers. B...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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Bullis board discusses future growth

With Friday’s deadline for a facilities request looming, the Bullis Charter School Board of Directors last week began examining options for potential growth for the 2014-2015 school year.

Over the past few years, the Bullis board has explored ways to grow the school to five sections of K-3 grade classes and four sections of 4-8 grade classes. Bullis added a fourth section of K-3 classes last year and is moving toward offering three sections of 4-8 grade classes.

Board member Francis La Poll reminded others on the board that the charter school’s plan was to add an additional kindergarten and first grade in the 2014-2015 school year, giving the school five sections of lower-grade classes.

But board member Janet Medlin said she has received feedback from parents opposed to expanding next year.

“There are families that are encouraging us not to add another strand,” Medlin said. “Many families are finding it challenging to do the two campus split and they want us to work out operating on two sites before we grow more.”

La Poll pointed out that those opposing expansion are parents of current students – not those on the wait list.

Medlin noted that the charter school could have filled two more kindergarten classes with interested in-district families.

“I don’t feel our program has diminished in any way because of the growth,” Medlin said. “There are still in-district community taxpayers who want access to our school.”

Board member John Phelps said he has also heard from parents regarding growth, some of them concerned with “cutbacks and a lack of play space” at the charter’s new location on the Blach Intermediate School campus.

“It is important that we really understand our ability to assimilate and hire,” Phelps said.

Board member Peter Evans said lack of space is a problem Bullis has to deal with year after year because the district doesn’t provide “adequate facilities.”

“Having 25 percent less space and being spread across two campuses – that is our reality,” he said. “That is not a result of growth – that is just another thing we have to work through.”

Phelps added that charter school officials have clearly expressed how they would like to see a two-site split work, for instance when they drafted a proposal toward the end of the facilities allocation process last year.

“If there is an opportunity to put this behind us, what is the intention in the district’s ignoring that proposal?” Phelps said.

Board Chairman Ken Moore said there were three options before the board –adding a kindergarten and first-grade class, adding only a kindergarten class or no new growth.

Before making a decision, board members agreed that they must consult their parents for feedback. The board scheduled an additional meeting Monday night, after the Town Crier’s press deadline.

Other business

One of Bullis’ newest board members, Joe Hurd, announced his resignation last week. He is leaving the area for a job in Washington, D.C.

Los Altos School District Board President Doug Smith said the Bullis board has agreed to meet face to face to discuss support for a future bond measure. The meeting is scheduled 7 p.m. today at Los Altos Hills Town Council Chambers. For a report on that meeting, read next week’s Town Crier.

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