Let’s Talk November 2016

Q: What is the process for filing for use of facilities?  Who checks to see if a location is free?  Do teachers need to fill them out?  When we as volunteers fill them out, my understanding is basically we were asking to see if that location was free.  When it is signed back and ok for us to use that location, we should be in the clear, correct?

A: Please click on the link for instructions for requesting use of facilities.



If any requester receives a signed, approved copy of their request with an assigned permit number in the upper right hand corner, they are good to go.

Q: I would like to submit a question about the cleaning and waxing of the gym floors at the middle schools. What is the protocol for simple dusting of the floors before games and practices?

A: Pro Line Floor is out twice a year.  Once in the summer time and again right before Thanksgiving.  The service includes a wet scrub of the floor with 3M scrub pads, tack the flooring to pick up the remaining dust and two applications of finish.  They will also do some minor paint touch-ups if necessary.

The gym floors are normally cleaned at night after park and rec leaves. The custodian runs a dust mop over the floor.

Q: Why is only Powerhouse being invited to a meeting to discuss hazing when this is something that would be helpful to all choirs as well as all groups on campus? Shouldn’t all parents be made aware that this is happening?

A: After receiving feedback regarding the impact of this event, we may consider hosting additional sessions for other groups.

Q: Why is it that the special education department can’t give us a clear idea as to the transition and plans for an autism program at the high schools?  There’s one in place at Jordan but there doesn’t seem to be any clear indication of how our children will be transitioning.

A: This will be a topic that is explored during the development of the Special Education Master Plan. In the meantime, you can discuss transition supports during your IEP meeting.

Q: Does the school site receive 100% of the funds generated by the filming on their site?

A: 65% School site, 20% BUSD Arts for All, 10% Facilities and 5% Superintendent/Board of Education.

Q: How many of the students who are not allowed to participate in promotion exercises at the middle school level, because they don’t qualify, are able to graduate from high school 4 years later?

A: Historically, we have not analyzed that data, but we are now following up with all students (not just seniors) to ensure they graduate from high school (some may take longer than four years).

Q: At the elementary level, are school sites given money for art supplies? If so, how much. In middle schools and high schools, how much money is the fine arts teacher given for art supplies? In middle schools and high schools, how much money is the music teacher given for instruments, sheet music, music stands? In middle schools and high schools, how much money is the choir teacher given for sheet music, licensing, costumes? In middle schools and high schools, how much money is the drama teacher given for script copying, licensing, costumes, sets? In middle schools and high schools, how much money does each school receive to maintain and improve their stages — lights, sound, curtains, backdrops?

A: School receive an operating budget that they allocate to all of their programs. Principals work with their teachers to determine how much each program will receive. In addition, grades 6-12 receive a total of $14,000 in base grant for art supplies and materials. Those funds are allocated by average daily attendance (ADA)

Q: I have been on School Site Council at more than one school. Consistently the School site plans focus on struggling students. This made sense under No Child Left Behind. However, under the Every Student Succeeds Act, it seems like we need to alter the way we evaluate our success. How are schools and administrators doing this? I have seen no change in the approach for school site goals.

A: We are still required by the federal government to submit school site plans that focus on the students who generate the funding (Title I – socioeconomic disadvantaged, Title III – English learners).

Q: There was a situation on one of the campuses during lunch with parents where two parents acted poorly. There is a rumor that this will cause all lunches/picnics with parents to be suspended indefinitely. Is this true?

A: I am requesting to see more detailed safety plans before campus lunches can continue.

Q: Follow up to October Let’s Talk question #1:

Where can teachers find a list of district approved technology that is up to date?

Are teachers AWARE of where they find this list?

A: Our intranet site has a list that employees can review. The instructional technology team is currently reviewing the list as part of the development of the instructional technology master plan. In the meantime, teachers can contact the technology services division if they have any questions.

Q: Follow up to October Let’s Talk question 10: In the 3 year plan it is worthwhile to consider funds to support field trips in the arts such as attendance at local plays, concerts, opera, arts shows, etc.  I suggest the draft include field trip funds.

A: We will not be including field trips in the plan. The Board asked for us to look at expanding music instruction TK-5, Dance in Middle School, Theater in Middle school, alignment of instrumental music, and a coordinated fundraising/partnership approach to supporting the arts. We are working on options for each of these topics. We should have a draft by January.

Q: What is the district’s plan to make instruments available at all of the elementary schools?

A: The Board has given us a priority of aligning our elementary string programs with middle schools (and high schools). Currently, there will not be a districtwide focus to expand the strings program at elementary schools until we have aligned the current program. However, individual schools may explore using their site funds to expand their instrumental program.

Q: What are the plans to bring digital media training to the elementary students? (Like middle and high school)

A: The Instructional Technology Committee is working on a plan that includes a scope and sequence of tech literacy skills K-12.

Q: Will Burbank schools be moving toward a later start date for the school year?

A: No. Last year we conducted a survey to collect feedback on our calendar and we did not have a majority of individuals who wanted to change the calendar (no one wanted to start later and end after Memorial Day). There is a calendar committee that reviews the calendar each year and is open to parents, and then it is negotiated.

Q: We were going to ask him if the district would cover the cost of CPR and first aid training for our staff as part of disaster preparedness

A: Each school site has individuals who are required to have CPR training — the district covers the cost of those individuals. We do not cover the cost for those individuals who do not have the requirement in their job description.

Q: I would like to ask about changes that can be made in extending recess time, or adding another short recess in the afternoon. Also, research strongly proves that the more exercise children get, the better their academic success, and that small movements while working at a desk improves focus. Can there be allowances and changes made to take advantage of this? Are teachers being educated and trained in new discoveries and how to implement them?

A: If we extend recess, we will need to extend the school day in order to meet our instructional minutes. In the past, this has not been something parents and employees wanted to do.

Q: Is the district going to provide written guidelines to parent organizations regarding how to handle Music/Variety shows on campus? There are schools with longstanding programs that know that they need to make changes, but have not been told exactly what needs to change from the past. The only direct guideline that we have received is to not record any of the performances in their entirety.

A: Since there are many nuances to the shows, we are requesting parent organizations to work with their principal and Peggy Flynn to discuss the specifics of their show.

Q: Can we get more ELA Benchmark books? Some classes need more little books.

A: All schools have received the required amount of books, if schools would like additional books above and beyond the requirement it will be a site based decision to use school funding.