Hello Belmont-Redwood Shores Families,

I’m writing with an update on District efforts and events.  Today’s message includes the 2019-20 school calendar, negotiations with our teachers’ bargaining unit, our Dyslexia Study Group, a Healthy Schools Initiative newsletter, Ralston Avenue improvements, and an upcoming countywide science event.

2019-20 Calendar
The first day of school next year will be Wednesday, August 21, 2019.  I apologize for missing our target of approving the 2019-20 calendar at the February 7 board meeting.  We have agreement on the calendar now, and the Board will approve it on March 7, with the calendar going onto the district website on March 8.

Negotiations
We have begun negotiating compensation, benefits, and other areas for improvement to our contract with the Belmont-Redwood Shores Faculty Association (our teachers’ bargaining unit) for the 2019-20 school year.  Presently, we’re in year two of a three-year contract, but we revisit compensation and a limited number of topics annually. Here is the joint statement from the parties regarding our first day of negotiations.

Dyslexia Study Group
Late in 2017, the State of California published new guidelines for supporting students with symptoms of dyslexia.  As mentioned in our last update, our district has assembled a Dyslexia Study Group, consisting of 25 parents, teachers, and administrators, to identify how we can proactively address dyslexia to ensure that all students are academically successful.  The group will meet again February 27th, at 1:45pm in the Ralston Library, to review some screening tools, to begin discussing instructional best practices for all students, as well as to explore intervention for identified students.

Healthy Schools Initiative Newsletter
In partnership with the Sequoia Healthcare District, we publish a quarterly health newsletter .  This edition focuses on e-cigarettes and vaping, which is a growing phenomenon among teens, and outlines a number of valuable programs and upcoming events.

Ralston Avenue Improvements
Our contractors plan to work on the Ralston Avenue median in front of Ralston Middle School next week, and Ralston Avenue is expected to be down to one lane in each direction at that location from 7am to 4pm Tuesday through Friday of next week.  We hope to have the entire project, including signals, median, and sidewalk improvements, completed by the end of March. Thank you for your patience!

Countywide STEM and Art Event
Looking for an engaging, educational and family-friendly outing?  Consider the San Mateo County Office of Education’s “Next Big Think” event on Sunday, March 3, from 11am to 4pm, at the San Mateo County Event Center.  More information is here .

I hope that your family has an enjoyable break, and I invite you to send me questions, comments, or suggestions for improvement.  Thank you!

Michael Milliken
Superintendent