Welcome Back to the School Gardens!   Garden education
This year, the Gardening and Cooking Program will provide students with hands-on experience in the garden using an innovative preschool through fifth grade district-wide Garden-Based Learning Curriculum . Building upon many years of educating our students in the garden, the curriculum is designed around concise and easy-to-follow 45 minute lessons that connect to grade-level standards in science, math, language arts, physical education, nutrition, and health.

This new curriculum is evidence of our community's continued dedication to educating the whole child with hands-on learning in the school garden, and to improving  our students' physical and mental health. New curriculum projects for use with students in our middle school and Berkeley Technology Academy (BTA) gardens are also being developed.

Check out the new Garden-Based Learning Curriculum in use in the PreK-5 school gardens, and learn more about how the city, school district, and school communities have helped to keep our garden program alive and thriving, by reading more on our recent web post.
Every Kid in a Park  
The "Every Kid in a Park" initiative is arriving to Berkeley public schools this week! Our schools are taking part in a nation-wide campaign, lead by the Obama administration and the National Parks Foundation, to invite all 4th grade students and their families to visit our national parks for free during the 2015-16 school year.

California author Mike Graf is coming to each elementary school to present an assembly for all 4th grade classes about our national parks, and about realistic fiction.  Adventures with the Parkers is Graf's realistic fiction series that follows the Parker family as they solve a mystery in each of the national parks they are exploring.

Graf's presentation is a dynamic way to continue our schools' focus on writing skills while ensuring that all families are encouraged to avail themselves of the "Every Kid in a Park" initiative. As an additional treat, at some of the presentations a National Parks Ranger will also be present - in full uniform!
Leaders in New Roles for 2015-16      
Berkeley attracts an impressive group of educators and leaders to serve in our school district. Take a look at who's taken on a new leadership role this year!
Emergency Epinephrine Auto-injectors in All Schools    
In the last year, California State Legislature approved SB 1266, establishing policy for the use of Emergency Epinephrine Auto-injectors in schools. In summary, the bill requires school districts to provide emergency epinephrine auto-injectors to individual school sites and to train personnel who have volunteered.
Trained personnel may use epinephrine auto-injectors to provide emergency medical aid to persons suffering, or reasonably believed to be suffering, from an anaphylactic reaction.  Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction which can occur after exposure to an allergen or an insect sting.
All BUSD schools are now compliant with this legislation and are currently in possession of the EpiPen auto-injectors and have trained staff familiar with their use.

Note: These injectors are for emergency use only and should not be considered supply for students with a known allergy.

Action Steps to Address Sexual Harassment
Superintendent Evans and Berkeley High School Principal Sam Pasarow sent a joint letter to the Berkeley High community regarding  several of the most recent prevention and response efforts undertaken to increase awareness about sexual harassment, and prevent it from happening in our school district.

More information on improved policies and procedures to address and respond to sexual harassment is available in the 2015-16 Parent Student Handbook, including  the creation of the Title IX Coordinator/Compliance Officer position and contact information, the new Interim Sexual Harassment Policy, and the updated Uniform Complaint Policy, procedures, and complaint form

Learn about The Berkeley Public Schools Fund - Watch New Video    
Berkeley Public Schools Fund

The Berkeley Public Schools Fund is debuting a new video about how they make a difference for students in Berkeley's public schools.  The video features teachers and staff from several schools in the District, including preschool teacher Niki Reif, Kevin Anderson from King Middle, BHS band director Karen Wells, Assistant Superintendent Pasquale Scuderi, and many more! 
Expanded Access to School Board Meetings

We've expanded a few online tools to increase community access and facilitate the work of the School Board. Now you can follow the initiatives and issues that interest you the most, when and where it's the most convenient for you!

Online Agendas
The new online board agendas and public meeting materials are easy to read and scan, and provide improved access to the related board documents. 

Live Streaming Online
School Board meetings are now streamed online, and also continue to be shown on B-TV Cable Channel 33. All televised board meetings are archived as part of the process.