Two new elementary school principals are in place for the start of the school year next week after the Pleasanton school board approved all pending principal contracts Tuesday night.
The board approved Amador Valley High vice principal Sebastian Bull as principal of Donlon Elementary and Ann Jayne as Vintage Hills Elementary's new principal. Jayne previously worked as a vice principal in the Manteca Unified School District.
The board also formally approved contracts with new administrators who were previously appointed and had already started work this summer, including principals Elias Muniz Rodriguez (Hearst) and Shay Galletti (Fairlands), interim principal Jill Butler (Harvest Park), vice principal Lisa Hague (Hart), and interim vice principals Michael O'Brien and Suzanne Smith (half-time) at Pleasanton Middle School.
Trustees also unanimously approved a contract for the district's new interim assistant superintendent of human resources Dianne Howell, who is replacing Bill Faraghan after he retired in June.
"Welcome to everyone who is new in our district and who is just in a new role in our district," board president Valerie Arkin said.
Most of Tuesday's meeting included housekeeping items. With school starting on Tuesday, many of this year's contracts had to be approved for basic services -- cafeteria food, custodial supplies, student teaching agreement and contracts for teachers who were recently hired at the district.
School district staff gave an overview of this year's summer school program, which 1,048 students from first to 12th grade attended. Staff reported to the board the strategies that helped the program improve this year, such as having a later start time of 8:30 a.m., requiring an attendance policy for students enrolled in the Virtual Academy program that serves high school seniors who haven't completed graduation requirements and rearranging schedules so students in Algebra I could have 20 or fewer students in those classes.
Trustee Chris Grant commended summer school staff, saying the program is a "safety net."
He pointed out Hispanic students make up 30% of summer school attendees, as compared to 10% of the fall-spring school population, and African American students make up 5% of the summer school population but make up 2% of the fall-spring school population, according to 2014-15 data.
"It looks to me that we still have a ways to go," he said, encouraging administrators and teachers to work on solutions to those disparities.
The board approved an operating budget for the 2015-16 year of $138.1 million and expenditures of $130.6 million. The ending reserve is projected to be $6.25 million.
The board also approved an agreement with the teacher's union (APT), including a 3.8% increase to salary schedules -- meaning Pleasanton teachers will get raises this year. The agreement means $320,400 more will be spent on teacher salaries across the district than has previously budgeted.
The board approved the contract between the district and Hansen, who began as interim superintendent in June after former superintendent Parvin Ahmadi resigned. The vote was 4-1 with Trustee Joan Laursen in dissent, who said she wanted to be consistent with her June vote.
"I voted 'no' on the appointment of the Interim Superintendent because I do not agree with the process this Board used to select the candidate, which was neither transparent nor comprehensive. It was a difficult vote for me because Jim Hansen is a good friend, and a wonderful man," Laursen said at the June 22 special meeting where Hansen was appointed. "However, I cannot vote to expend public dollars on a candidate for Interim Superintendent who does not possess the qualifications for this job."
The district will be searching for a permanent superintendent. Hansen's interim contract will end June 30, 2016.
Several parents, teachers and district staff spoke Tuesday and praised Hansen's legacy during his time as an educator.
Other items on the agenda included:
* Allowing the city to hook Hart Middle School's field up with a planned recycled water system.
* Awarding Sysco a beverage contract for flavored waters, sports drinks, water and fruit juice that meet nutritional guidelines for school lunches.
* A discussion on this year's California state budget and its effects to district funding.
*Approving a student teaching agreement where college students can intern for one or two years. The board approved agreements with California State University East Bay and Saint Mary's College so their students can work as interns.
*Approval of bids for suppliers of custodial services, such as mops, brooms and gloves.
Tuesday night's meeting was the first since the board returned from a regularly scheduled break from meetings during the summer. The next public school board meeting will be Sept. 8.