A+ News
October 14, 2014

Small Meets Big:
Berkeley International High School Welcomes 26 from the Faroe Islands

As part of a three-day cultural & educational exchange, twenty BIHS families hosted a group of Faroese high school students. BIHS students learned much about the unique culture of the Faroese, and enjoyed sharing their typical American high school studies, sports, and routines with the students.

Thank you to all the students, families, teachers, and staff who made the exchange possible!

Outstanding Educators recognized on Education Sunday

Thirty-four BUSD teachers and staff were recognized as "Outstanding Educators", at Liberty Hill Missionary Baptist Church's annual Education Sunday. Read about those recognized, and watch a video clip of Superintendent Evans' welcome.

BUSD's Parent-Student Handbook

   The 2014-15 Parent-Student Handbook is available on our website and provides students and parents with the required notices, Education and Government Codes, as well as other helpful information about the school district's programs and policies.  
BUSD Meetings and Events Google Calendar
Google Calendar 
California State Seal  

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What's in the LCAP?
Family outreach staffing in all schools
Research has consistently shown that when schools and families work together to support learning, everyone benefits: students do better in school and in life, parents become empowered, schools get better, communities grow stronger. As part of the development of the Local Control & Accountability Plan (LCAP), and including the 2020 Vision, the Communications Study, School Governance Council surveys, and other goal-setting activities, our community prioritized the need for family engagement staff dedicated to supporting and promoting communication, inclusion, and access to resources for families. 

As a result of an increase in state funding and goals set in Berkeley's three year Local Control & Accountability Plan (LCAP), each K-5 school now has the support of a Family Coordinator. The plan directs expected increases in funding in 2015-16 to support additional middle school family engagement programming. 

The increased staffing serves to expand the reach of the Office of Family Engagement & Equity that, until now, had been limited to one funding source:  Berkeley Schools Excellence Program (BSEP), our local education tax. The primary focus of the Family Coordinators is to equip parents with the necessary information, skills, and ability to effectively navigate the school system, support their children's success in school, and engage parents in school leadership opportunities. Visit the Family Blog page to learn more. Here you can also find the contact information for the Family Coordinator at your school.
Parent Workshop on The Toolbox, A Social-Emotional Curriculum: Wednesday, Oct. 15
At this BUSD parent education workshop you will receive more information about the Social-Emotional Learning curriculum being taught at school in grades K-6, the "Tools" and how they work, and tips on how to use them in parenting.

The Tools are simple, but they are not easy. They require practice, practice, and more practice. We invite you to support your child in learning and practicing these Tools at home and talking with them about what they are learning about the Tools in school. You might also think about how you could use the Tools to make parenting easier. If you can not join this event, it will be repeated again on November 19. More on the tools here.

Date: Wednesday, Oct. 15
Time: 6:30 - 7:30 pm
Location: District Office Technology Lab,
2020 Bonar St., Room 126

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BHS's Glenn Wolkenfeld Represents Berkeley
County Superintendent Sheila Jordan with BHS teacher Glenn Wolkenfeld

Alameda County Office of Education (ACOE) recently honored nineteen teachers representing excellence in teaching in Alameda County school districts as the 2014 Teachers of the Year. Berkeley High biology teacher Glenn Wolkenfeld, known for  using creative methods to engage his students, represented Berkeley well as he lit up the awards ceremony with one of his unique raps.  Find a clip of his rap and more on our blog.
Annual School & District Committee Member Training: Tuesday, Oct. 21 sepia_stacked_hands.jpg
If you are a staff member, faculty, or parent serving on a school or district committee (e.g. SGC, BSEP, P&O, PTA, DELAC, PAC etc.) this training is for you! This annual event is a great way to kick of a year of active parent participation and shared governance in our schools and district!

Here are a few of the workshops being offered:
  • Effective & Inclusive School and District Committees: Roundtable Discussion  
  • SGC Toolbox #1: Orientation for New SGC Members & Chairs on How to Build Site Plans
  • SGC Toolbox #2: Survey Design and the Role of Data for SGCs
  • Coaching for Success: Literacy, English Language Development, and RtI2 in our Schools
  • School Climate: The Social-Emotional Toolbox, Welcoming Schools, Family Engagement and Equity
  • And more!   
Date: Tuesday, October 21
Time: 5:30 - 8:00pm
Where: Longfellow Middle School
Addressing Enrollment Growth
The issue of continued enrollment growth in our schools was discussed at the October 8th board meeting, and was briefly outlined in our last issue of the A+ News. During the Public Comment session of the Board meeting, many speakers shared their perspectives and suggestions for addressing growth at school sites and district-wide.  The board discussion will continue at the November 5th Board Meeting. Additional data on facilities and enrollment will be presented, and a timeline for the implementation of short and long-term solutions will be discussed. 

As for every School Board Meeting, documents will be made public online at least 72 hours before the meeting, and there is an opportunity during the first thirty minutes of each school board meeting for members of the public to address the board during the public comment session.
Get Ready to Run! 

The Berkeley Public Schools Fund is the official local charity for the 2014 Berkeley Half Marathon and 5K! Last year the Schools Fund raised $30,000 with the help of runners at each school. With a 5K this year, families can run together! Help the Schools Fund double it's fundraising so it can support more grants like these, which were funded with marathon proceeds last year.


The Schools Fund has already set up individual school teams. Join others in your community who are raising money for your child's school!  

Upcoming Meetings    

School Board
Wed., Oct. 22 - 7:30 pm
Wed., Nov. 5 - 7:30 pm
The meeting is held at the West Campus Board Room (Entrance on Addison between Bonar and Browning Streets, with free parking in the public lot on Browning.) Board agendas are posted here 72 hours before the meeting.