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News

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Gregory Helfrich

Santa Clara Sheriff’s detectives have arrested a Los Altos Hills man they suspect repeatedly molested a child decades ago.

Detectives arrested Gregory Helfrich, 54, on a warrant at his Old Page Mill Road home April 27 and...

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Schools

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students


Courtesy of Jessica Harell
Blach Intermediate School seventh-grader Paris Harrell, who loves science and animals, recently received a scholarship from the local branch of the AAUW to attend Tech Trek camp.

It’s not every day that a junior hig...

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Community

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner


Federici

Longtime Los Altos resident Mario Federici, who turned 98 Feb. 24, is a man of many languages. He shared his knowledge with thousands of students during his long career as a teacher.

Federici was born and raised in Italy, where he stud...

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Comment

Attend an event, get involved, have fun: Editorial

You don’t have to run for city council to get involved in the community. Sometimes it can be as simple as attending a Los Altos event. You’ll have plenty of opportunities, as the May and June calendars are bustling with activity.

The Dow...

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Special Sections

Racing around Monterey

Racing around Monterey


Gary Anderson/Special to the Town Crier
The easy handling of the VW Golf R, above, makes for an ideal ride along the Big Sur coast.

 

When automotive journalists are asked to list their favorite places in the world to drive, Monterey alway...

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Business

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations


Courtesy of Eureka
Eureka, a new restaurant in downtown Mountain View, highlights local craft beer and whiskeys on a menu of food spanning from sea to farm.

Craft beer and fancy whiskeys headline the menu at Eureka, the new restaurant that opene...

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People

Stepping Out

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'


Courtesy of Palo Alto Players
The Baker’s Wife, left, and Cinderella’s erstwhile Prince stand out in the Palo Alto Players production of “Into the Woods.”

Little Red Riding Hood sets forth at the outset of “Into the...

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Spiritual Life

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International


Courtesy of Los ALtos United Methodist Church
Hidden Villa will bring some of its farm animals to Los Altos United Methodist Church Sunday to support the nonprofit Heifer International.

Los Altos United Methodist Church is scheduled to salute th...

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Breaking news: LASD puts charter school on notice

Alleging that Bullis Charter School breached the terms of the Los Altos School District’s Final Offer and Facilities Use Agreement, the district put the charter school on notice and demanded that it cease violations within 45 days.

In a letter sent Monday, the district requested that Bullis Charter School representatives attend the district’s Nov. 12 board meeting to evaluate whether the charter school’s violations “should disqualify it from receiving an offer of facilities for the 2014-2015 school year or result in other appropriate remedies.”

The letter listed the charter school’s violations, including:

• Violating enrollment limitations at both Blach Intermediate and Egan Junior High schools.

• Violating the grade-level restrictions (grades 4-8) at Blach.

• Using an allocated classroom as a chorus room, creating a distraction for Blach students using the adjacent library.

• Using the soccer fields outside the times outlined in the slated sharing schedule.

• Maintaining a Blach school start at 8:45 a.m. and end at 2:30 p.m., creating a conflict with the Blach schedule.

“This is an untenable situation,” stated the letter, signed by Doug Smith, district board president. “Bullis Charter School has no legal basis to flout those conditions and its refusal to abide by them creates a lawless regime that is unsustainable under any facilities-sharing arrangement.”

The letter requests that the charter school cease the alleged violations immediately, threatens penalties for past violations and questions whether such actions should disqualify the charter school from receiving facilities for the 2014-2015 school year.

The possible punitive measures the district suggests include:

• Legal remedies through the court, including monetary and injunctive.

• Adjustment of facilities, furnishings and equipment offered to the charter school in response to the 2014-2015 request.

• Imposition of enforcement measures, including but not limited to a requirement that Bullis Charter School certify under penalty of perjury that it is complying with the Final Offer and Facilities Use Agreement.

• Other remedies appropriate under law included by the district.

Before enforcing available penalties, district officials want to give charter school representatives an opportunity to respond to their concerns.

“The district will use Bullis Charter School’s response to determine whether it will pursue available remedies to enforce the terms of its Final Offer and Facilities Use Agreeement,” the letter concluded.

“(The district) persists in inventing its own alternate reality,” wrote Ken Moore, chairman of the Bullis Charter School Board of Directors, in an email to the Town Crier. “There is no legal ‘cap’ on enrollment, there are not environmental ‘restrictions’ enforceable against Bullis Charter School and there is no judgment that says anything to the contrary.”

Moore said the allegations are currently being fought in court and that he expects the charter school to emerge victorious.

“They are losing their war against Los Altos residents who choose the charter school and now desperately threaten our school and families directly,” Moore said. “If taxpayers weren’t outraged at (the district) before, just read this latest letter.”

To read a full copy of the letter, visit losaltosonline.com.

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