Kudos to LASD for ‘courageous’ deal
Regarding Sangeeth Peruri’s column, “Sharing is the solution for BCS, LASD” (April 17): I am disappointed with his stance.
First, we do not have two communities, Bullis Charter School and the Los Altos School District, but one community: Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and Mountain View families. Some choose to send their kids to Bullis Charter School, some to district schools, some to both over time.
Second, the argument that one of the two parties in the deal is getting more than the other is flawed. The district has to follow state law and provide facilities to Bullis Charter School. The charter school does not owe anything to the district, but chose to cap its enrollment and pay for making the required work on Egan Junior High, which it would be inheriting “as is.”
Third, the notion that it is a catastrophe for our kids to cross El Camino Real is an insulting, elitist comment. Our kids include the Mountain View kids who are part of the Los Altos School District – which is a misnomer; the name implies that it is for Los Altans, that others are second-class citizens.
Fourth, the continued stance of combatting the charter school rather than embracing it has resulted in growth every year since it started. If it had been embraced by the district, then the district would have an asset in their midst.
The best strategy for the district is to emulate – and one-up – Bullis Charter School by providing features that are attractive to parents. I applaud the partnership of the district with the Los Altos Chinese School. After-hours classrooms at several district schools are made available for Chinese language teaching.
I am very impressed with the Los Altos School District trustees for the very courageous deal they have negotiated and hope that both boards approve it and finally put this internecine feud behind us.
Only LASD compromised on BCS agreement
In her April 17 letter, “Agreement represents true compromise,” Jill Jene writes that “neither side got everything they wanted.” I would disagree. From the start, this is all Bullis Charter School has ever wanted – control of the Egan Junior High School site. The only compromise is coming from the Los Altos School District.
Perhaps the school district offices should move to the proposed new location and Bullis Charter School move to the district location, sharing wonderful space with Covington’s facilities. Alas, that would impact the neighborhoods surrounding Covington just as it does the Egan and Blach Intermediate School sites.
Truth be told, there is no facility in Los Altos that can easily accommodate the growing number of cars that access Bullis Charter School twice daily. And that number will continue to grow, per the charter school’s proposed plans. The only solution is for Bullis Charter School to find a location in Mountain View that has convenient auto access, and the space they require for their proposed growth.
We live in Silicon Valley, for crying out loud! Maybe we’ve got some room on a tech campus?
Bring disc golf to nearby park
To date, there are no disc golf courses in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills or Mountain View, and only one in Cupertino. The one course, Villa Maria Disc Golf, is very far and inconvenient for residents to travel there, and it is prone to getting overcrowded due to higher demand than supply.
At least one disc golf course should be established so that residents can bond over a family-friendly sport that requires little to no prior experience or skill.
Although these courses require a decent amount of land, which is especially hard to obtain in the Bay Area, there are plenty of parks that could accommodate even a nine-hole course, which is still fairly long.
Cuesta Park could be a potential site for a disc golf course, possibly in the lot on the east side of the park. This area is generally bare, with a few walking paths through it. There is still a lot of land in between these paths, which could be capitalized on to provide a golf course.
I believe a disc golf course would positively impact these neighborhoods, as it would bring an activity that is great for anyone, free of charge.
Blaming liberals for crime ‘unproductive’
Regarding William F. Moniz’s letter, “Liberals to blame for rash of Burglaries” (April 3):
Good heavens, Mr. Moniz, have “simple solutions to complex problems” ever been a valid, workable answer to the complex problems of our town or the world today?
With the president and much of the federal government in the throes of promulgating thinking like yours, it is a relief to me that locally there are those who value their right to think differently and seek other avenues of thought.
Your epistle prompted me to review the definition of “liberal” in my own mind. I am proud to say that in my 80s, my values still fit within the synonyms: tolerant, open-minded, unbiased, impartial, unbigoted and respectful of individual rights and freedoms. The antonyms listed were: narrow-minded and bigoted.
You are certainly correct that there has been a “rash of burglaries” in our area, calling for increased action to curtail such a trend, but simplistically blaming liberals is quite narrow and unproductive, in my opinion, an opinion which I, just as you, clearly have the right to express – thank goodness!
Hardscape to blame for stormwater pollution
Re the letter “LA shirking obligation for storm drainage” (April 17):
Our natural frontages are not the cause of stormwater pollution. To the contrary, they are the solution!
Los Altos has the highly desirable characteristic of roughly 37 miles of residential streets with natural frontage – no curbs or gutters. These natural “rights-of-ways” are an environmental windfall, allowing for the “Slow It, Spread It, Sink It” philosophy of Save the Bay. Give rain a place to spread out and percolate into the ground. This allows toxins, especially in nasty street runoff, to decompose in soil and clean water to recharge our aquifers.
Stormwater runoff is the top source of pollution to our local creeks and the San Francisco Bay. Hardscape is the chief culprit – streets, driveways, curbs, parking lots, etc. Just as society has seen the devastating effect of plastic bags on the environment, stormwater pollution from hardscape is a critical worldwide issue. We have to change the way we think about rain.
In Los Altos, the homeowner, not the city, is responsible for maintaining a natural frontage. Provide a seamless transition from street to the right-of-way. Fill in potholes. Erosion is a symptom of volume. Treat the symptom, find the problem. Simple grading and the use of green elements and permeable materials can transform a right-of-way from draining rain to capturing rain. This is the future of our streets.