Fri03272015

News

Big week for community colleges: Local leaders react to Obama's free-tuition proposal


Thor

In his State of the Union address last week, President Barack Obama’s proposal to offer students two years of free community college tuition put the spotlight on the advantages of attending a community college like Foothill College in Los Altos Hills.

“What the president has done for community colleges is phenomenal,” said Linda M. Thor, chancellor of the Foothill-De Anza Community College District. “The national discussion that is taking place would not be happening if not for him. For some odd reason, community colleges have always been the Rodney Dangerfield of high education. I really think we are seeing that shift with this whole discussion.”

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LASD schedules study session highlighting bond implementation

The Los Altos School District boardroom is the place to be Monday for residents curious about how the district will begin cashing in on its recently passed $150 million bond.

Superintendent Jeff Baier instructed the board of trustees last week to schedule the study session to take an in-depth look at the construction process and available financing options.

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Local education leaders announce retirements this week


Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Foothill-De Anza Community College Chancellor Linda Thor, left, and Mountain View Los Altos Union High School Superintendent Barry Groves, right, announced their impending retirements this week.

Los Altos will lose two education titans at the end of this school year. This month, Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District Superintendent Barry Groves and Foothill-De Anza Community College District Chancellor Linda M. Thor announced their decisions to retire.

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LASD committee continues bond planning

The Los Altos School District’s Facilities Master Plan Advisory Committee met twice this month to craft a plan for spending bond funds, should Measure N pass in the Nov. 4 election.

After two meetings, the advisory committee compiled a prioritized list of proposed improvements for existing campuses, the district’s second priority for bond spending. The group has just begun discussing how to address projected enrollment growth – the district’s No. 1 priority for bond money. If approved by 55 percent of voters, Measure N could generate $150 million for the district.

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Pilot program opens door for bachelor's degrees at FHDA


Town Crier File Photo
Under a new state pilot program, students at Foothill College could earn a bachelor’s degree.

By the start of the 2017-2018 school year, students may be able to earn a bachelor’s degree through the Foothill-De Anza Community College District.

At an estimated total of $10,560, the cost of pursuing a four-year degree in the district would be several thousand dollars less than one year’s tuition and fees at the University of California.

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New building added to Foothill's Measure C project list


Courtesy of FHDA
The Foothill-De Anza Community College District plans to consolidate administrative staff in a single building.

Regular visitors to the Foothill College campus over the past few years are familiar with dust, work crews and sidewalk detours, a bustling construction boom due in large part to Measure C – a $491 million bond local voters passed in 2006 to fund construction, equipment and technology in the Foothill-De Anza Community College District.

In addition to the new Physical Sciences & Engineering Center, improvements have included classroom modernization, photovoltaic system installation and circulation upgrades across the campus. One additional building, a 24,000-square-foot administrative office near parking Lot 7, is scheduled to break ground in December 2015.

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Los Altos City Council disbands school site subcommittee

The Los Altos City Council last week voted unanimously to disband an ad hoc committee aimed at discussing school site options with the Los Altos School District Board of Trustees.

As part of its vote, the council requested “affirmative action” by the trustees and directed their recently appointed Facilities Master Plan committee “to consider all alternatives to address school enrollment growth” aside from parks, according to a city staff report. The report specifically listed 12 Los Altos parks – including Hillview.

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