- 08/28/2013 - Free Outdoor Screening in the BAM/PFA Sculpture Garden
- 08/27/2013 - MARK EPSTEIN / The Trauma of Everyday Life
- 08/03/2013 - Book Signing and Discussion with Dave Kehr, followed by The Lawless Breed
- 06/24/2013 - BERKELEY PRIDE 365! First Comes Love, Then Comes Marriageâ€¦
- 06/23/2013 - An Afternoon with KHALED HOSSEINI
Category Archives: Schools
Berkeley schools are making a renewed commitment to recycling and composting after efforts slacked off over the past five years.
This year, a local non-profit, Green Schools Initiative, has worked with eight Berkeley schools, revitalizing recycling and composting programs. Green Schools was just awarded a grant for next year, so it can work with another eight schools in the fall.
According to Deborah Moore, executive director of Green Schools Initiative, recycling and composting are not only good for reducing landfill and greenhouse gases – they can also reduce the district’s spending.
“The Berkeley school district has potential to be saving $50,000 a year out of about $350,000 spent on trash pickup,” Moore said. … Continue reading »
For more than a decade, Janet Huseby has been Berkeley High School’s “point person,” according to Principal Pasquale Scuderi.
After contributing her hard work to BHS for 23 years, and serving as outreach and volunteer coordinator for the past nine years, Huseby is preparing to pass on the torch. She will stay on as a college essay reader, continuing the work she started when she first came to Berkeley High.
“I sort of feel like it’s time to shake things up a little bit,” she said in an interview with Berkeleyside on Thursday.
Huseby began lending a hand at BHS when her oldest child entered high school in 1990. She became particularly involved in College and Career Center (CCC), and used her professional writing skills to help students endure the grueling process of writing college application essays. … Continue reading »
Debbie Dean has been named as the new Principal at Berkeley’s Willard Middle School. Dean replaces Robert Ithurburn who is leaving to take up a new post.
The decision was announced at the BUSD Board meeting on Wednesday night.
Dean has been Assistant Principal at Redwood Middle School in Napa for the past five years. Before that, she was an assistant principal and school social worker in the Oakland Unified School District. She lives in Berkeley and is the parent of a student at Thousand Oaks Elementary School
In a statement read by BUSD Board Chair Karen Hemphill at the board meeting, Dean was described as being “well organized” and bringing “a wealth of administrative, teaching and cultural experiences.” She “communicates well with a wide range of individuals, listens carefully, possesses an innovative mind, assumes responsibility, demonstrates a high level of energy, possesses a willingness to learn, is very approachable and knows the secondary education territory, particularly middle school, well. … Continue reading »
This Friday, nearly 800 students from Berkeley High will attend their graduation ceremony at the historic Hearst Greek Theatre. But with equal fanfare, they’ll be joined by 62 seniors from Berkeley Technology Academy (B-Tech). Compared to the many hundreds from BHS, that might not sound like a lot, but consider this: two years ago, only seven B-Tech students graduated.
B-Tech provides a continuation high school diploma program for students who have either involuntarily been placed because of violations of Education Code 48900 or have chosen to be placed there because they are falling behind in academic credits at BHS. Many of the students are economically disadvantaged, nearly a third are homeless, and many have direct experience of violence and incarceration in their community. It’s a small school, with enrollment around 150, many of them in their senior year. The 62 B-Tech graduates this year are part of a class of 73 seniors.
“I want all 73 seniors graduating,” said Sheila Quintana, principal of B-Tech since July, 2011. … Continue reading »
Two chickens that were stolen from an outdoor coop at Rosa Parks Elementary School earlier this month were found dead and buried in the school yard Tuesday, according to the school’s garden teacher.
Tanya Stiller wrote Berkeleyside late Tuesday afternoon with the update: “I just found the two chickens. They were killed, and buried on top of each other in the garden. I saw what looked like the back of a bird sticking up in a spot where neighboring cats sometimes do their dirty business. It looked like a cat had been scratching there, probably uncovering what it could smell. There was an old wooden garden sign, that kinda looked like a cross next to it. Clearly there was remorse.”
The chickens, named Chip and Daisy, were removed from an outdoor coop sometime during the first weekend of June, Stiller told Berkeleyside last week. They were part of a group of five chickens Stiller had been using as part of her curriculum to teach students about the birds’ life cycle. … Continue reading »
The Rosa Parks Elementary School community is asking for the safe return of two of its five chickens, which were stolen over the weekend just days after they were moved from a science classroom into an outdoor coop that’s visible from Eighth Street.
“I ran into a science teacher who asked me, ‘What happened to the other two chickens, did you give them to somebody?’ I said, ‘What, they’re not there?’ I was pretty shocked, as were other people,” she said Wednesday evening. … Continue reading »
Rosa Parks Elementary School became Berkeley’s fifth solar school on Monday when students flicked a switch to activate a new rooftop installation of solar cells.
According to Pauline Follansbee, fiscal services director for Berkeley Unified School District, the Rosa Parks solar project will save $50,000 in utility costs over the next five years. She said the five schools together save the district around $100,000 a year.
“We have a focus on environmental science,” said Rosa Parks Principal Paco Furlan. “It’s real learning in action to have the solar panels.” … Continue reading »
Some weeks ago, Pete Rosos, a contributing photographer to Berkeleyside, decided to embark on a portrait project: he set out to photograph as many people as he could who work for Berkeley Unified School District’s gardening and cooking program. The program, as we have reported, is losing its federal funding next year and is facing severe cutbacks, despite district support and fundraising efforts. A campaign to raise money from within the community has been launched. As part of the effort, Berkeley Dine Out is happening tomorrow, Thursday May 30. Many Berkeley restaurants are participating and will donate a portion of their sales to the gardening and cooking program.
Above, we present Pete Rosos’ portraits (he managed to photograph 17 staff members of a total of 30). Click on individual images to make them larger and to read details of who is portrayed. (You can also click the crossed arrows in the upper right of the portrait to see it full scale.)
Below, Rosos reflects on what spurred him to create on the project, and offers his comments on the threats to the program: … Continue reading »
The Berkeley Unified School Board on Wednesday night formally appointed Donald Evans as the new Berkeley superintendent of schools by approving his contract. Evans, who was has been superintendent of the Hayward Unified School District for the past two years, will take up the position on July 1.
Berkeley Unified Board President Karen Hemphill said the board had been impressed with Evans’ experience and achievements, as well as his reputation for forging fruitful partnerships and having a collaborative leadership style. In Hayward, Evans held two town hall meetings for the community every year, for example.
“When we look at his body of work, he ticks a lot of the boxes that we wanted in Berkeley,” Hemphill said.
One of Evans’ last tasks in Hayward was submitting a plan to the district to raise the achievement levels of African American students, an issue of direct relevance to Berkeley. … Continue reading »
In its 30 years of operation, the Berkeley Public Education Foundation has raised more than $12 million and channeled more than 750,000 volunteer hours straight into Berkeley’s public schools, directly supporting the district’s 550 teachers. On Friday last week, in a single luncheon, it raised another $210,000, honored a select group of educators and administrators, along with a former Berkeley High student, and also marked two significant changes to its organization.
New leadership is in place with the recent appointment of Erin Rhoades as the fund’s executive director. Rhoades, formerly a principal planner for Urban Planning Partners and the executive director of Livable Berkeley, replaced Molly Fraker on April 8.
[View a gallery of photographs of the Schools Fund Spring Luncheon by Emilie Raguso.] … Continue reading »
The Edible Schoolyard at King Middle School held its annual Plant Sale on Saturday, May 11. The event, a big fundraiser for the Edible Schoolyard, featured food, live music, student-led tours, cooking demonstrations, and plenty of plants to snap up. Contributing photographer Nancy Rubin was there. … Continue reading »
[Editor's Note: Olajuwon Clayborn's funeral will be held Friday, May 17, at 11 a.m. at Missionary Church of God in Christ, 1125 Allston Way, in Berkeley.]
Students and teachers in one of Berkeley High’s small schools were left reeling this week after a former member of their cohort was shot and killed in East Oakland over the weekend.
Those who knew Olajuwon Clayborn, 17, described him as a sweet, quiet guy, a well-dressed ladies man who was passionate about basketball, and a dedicated student despite struggles in the classroom. Clayborn attended Berkeley schools from pre-school through 11th grade; he transfered to Castlemont High School in Oakland last fall for his senior year.
“If he loved you, he loved you to death,” said best friend Lonnie Brewer, 18, a Berkeley High senior in the school’s Communication Arts & Science (CAS) program. ”He had your back. If I had an argument on the court, he’d be right there.” … Continue reading »
On Thursday, May 2, officials say two sixth grade girls, who were waiting to be picked up from King Middle School, were approached by a man who asked them to help him retrieve an item from his car. The case is being treated as a possible attempted abduction.
On Friday, King Principal Janet Levenson sent an email and a recorded message via phone-tree to the King community in which she outlined what happened: “Yesterday at 3:00pm two 6th grade girls were waiting to be picked up at Berryman and Josephine,” she wrote in the email. “A man approached them saying that his keys had fallen into his car and his hand was too big to retrieve them. He pointed to the car which had the door open and was a couple of cars up the street. One girl started to go help him but her friend realized the potential danger and convinced her that they should run into the garden for help. The mom arrived almost immediately but the man was no longer there.He was described as a white male, 5’10″, thin build, brown hair and eyes, and driving a silver 4-door vehicle with no trunk (possibly a small SUV). Please be aware of who is driving around campus and remind your students to wait in front of the school.”
… Continue reading »