Coastsider endorses Measure E


By on Thu, May 20, 2010

I don’t know about you, but my high school counselor was an idiot.

But I also know from personal experience that the counselors in Coastside schools do great work for the students they serve. I know this from the experience of our two children who attended HMBHS and Cunha. I also know it from the dozens of students who spoke poignantly to the Cabrillo Unified School District governing board, begging them to preserve the district’s counselors.

If Measure E fails, all counselors will be eliminated at Half Moon Bay High School and Cunha Intermediate School. Life will go on as usual, but unknown numbers of Coastside teens will suffer as a result. Their parents will lose a direct link to the school.

My daughter has a particularly awesome second grade teacher. That teacher and many others may be laid off next year, because if Measure E fails the district will eliminate class size reductions in elementary school.

A couple dozen of this year’s first graders and their parents will have no idea what they’re missing if she’s not here. They will continue to soldier on, but they will be in much more crowded classrooms.

My kids tell me that the high school library is a refuge and a welcome place for many students.  They credit one person with this: high school librarian Brian Gerber.  If Measure E fails, the high school librarian will be gone.

The district will cut maintenance, groundskeeping, athletics funding, and more. If Measure E fails, the district will have to cut $2.5 million from its budget.

The district has announced it has reached an agreement with the teachers’ union that could save hundreds of thousands of dollars. This could be used to mitigate some of these cuts, but this year’s budget uses half a million dollars in one-time stimulus funds for ongoing operations.  If Measure E fails, even more essential services will be cut in 2011. I don’t know how they’ll do it.

Don’t vote against Measure E—or fail to vote at all—because you don’t like the school board. You’ll get an opportunity to vote against the incumbent board members in November. Don’t take it out on the district’s students.

You can’t sit this one out. This is a tough election in which to propose a new tax.  Republicans have a couple of big primaries on the ballot and they’re going to be turning out in large numbers.

If you care about the future public education in the Coastside, please show up and vote yes on Measure E.