Let’s Talk April 2017

Q: If a student is going to be questioned by police, at what point are parents contacted? Shouldn’t minors be protected by our administrators? I understand certain circumstances could be potently dangerous and police must be involved, but our children need protection as well. “Miranda rights” like situations.

A: The point at which parents are notified is determined by the Burbank Police Department on a case by case situation.

Q: Of the $90,000 that was raised by BEF, how much will be spent at the elementary level and how much will be spent at the secondary level?

A: We ended up receiving $100,000. Please see below for the allocation

Elementary Schools- STEAM Mobile Makerspaces Per School Total
Little Bits STEAM Education Class Packs 1,139.95 (4)- 40 total $ 44,649.00
Demco Cart 459 (1) – 11 total 5,060.00
Keva Planks 299.99 – 11 total 2,750.00
Code & Go Robot Mouse Activity Set 59.99 (5) -50 total 2,995.50
Code & Go Programmable Robot Mouse 29.99 (5) total 1,499.50
Ozobot- Jefferson only 54 (10) total 540.00
Osmo Wonder Kit- Jefferson only 123.25 247.00
Dash & Dot Wonder Pack – Jefferson only 279.99 1,120.00
Other Materials & Supplies – Jefferson only 2,995 2,995.00
Total Elementary Total $ 61,856.00


Secondary Schools – Transportation  
John Burroughs High School $ 4,000
Burbank High School 4,000
Monterey High School 3,000
Community Day School 1,500
Luther Burbank Middle School 3,000
Jordan Middle School 3,000
John Muir Middle School 4,000
Magnolia Park 1,250
Independent Learning Academy 1,250
Total Secondary $ 25,000


Horace Mann $ 2,000
FACTS 2,000
SEEDS 2,000
Total Programs $ 6,000


Q: Will drama be available for all three grade levels at Luther and Jordan next fall?

A: Jordan: All grade levels. Luther: Drama 7th and 8th grade (Drama club also available)

Q: What grade levels will be able to take orchestra at Luther next fall?

A:  All grade levels

Q: What’s the difference between what bonds can pay for and what a parcel tax can pay for?

A: Bonds can only pay for expenses associated with capital improvements (I.e., facilities, technology, equipment) as described in the ballot language and parcel taxes can be spent on anything that is spelled out in the ballot language.

Q: What is the process to see how or if Board goals are being achieved? Is that review a part of the process of setting the goals for the upcoming year?

A: We review all of the goals during the LCAP process and that information is shared with the Board so that they may consider it when developing the goals for the next year. http://www.burbankusd.org/District/15857-Untitled.html

How is goal 2.2 being addressed? 2 Sustain and improve the quality of teacher collaboration time to implement curriculum aligned to the California State Standards and best practices in instruction.

This is done in large part by our Instructional Teachers on Special Assignment (TOSAs) who work with each school site’s Instructional Leadership Team to address the instructional goals set forth by the principal. This work is done throughout the year.  Additionally, the TOSAs work by core department areas to address curriculum and alignment to California State Standards. For example, the TOSAs have worked with science teachers this year to align curriculum at the middle school where they are beginning the implementation process for an integrated science model. Therefore, the teachers have met to establish pacing and lesson plans concentrating on 6th grade. Next year we will move to 7th grade and so on.

Did 3.4 take place this year? 4 Host site-based parent education meetings on California State Standards at least two times during the year.


What steps are being taken to accomplish goal 5.4? 4 Increase the number of high school students who have completed a-g requirements for college eligibility.


What steps are being taken to accomplish goal 8.5? 5 Expand online high school classes and expand the availability of the Independent Learning Academy (ILA) to students.

Our ILA program has expanded greatly this last year. Student feedback through the LCAP process indicates that students like the ability to be dual enrolled in classes at their home school. This allows students to take their core courses online through the ILA and still participate in specialty classes like ASL or Anatomy at their home school. As far as online courses, we have courses approved for students to take through BYU. However, through the petition process, other online courses can be approved as long as they are from a WASC accredited institution and the course is UC approved. A counselor can provide guidance and complete the petition form. It is then sent to the Director of Secondary Education who reviews the request.

Q: There has been discussion around adding ukulele instruction to the elementary music program. When will this take place? How will students be taught, meaning will they use traditional sheet music with bass clef and treble clef or will they use guitar music that shows where to place your fingers on the strings in order to play a chord? How will ukuleles be integrated into the music curriculum?

A: We need to identify funding before we will be able to set a date for implementation. Elementary music teachers are meeting the last week of school to write curriculum.

Q: We recently found out that Jefferson Elementary received ukuleles that were paid for by the district. Our elementary school would also like the district to buy us ukuleles for our 5th graders to learn to play and read music. Will this be something that will happen before the beginning of next school year? What do we need to do to have this happen for us so they can start playing next year?

A: We are looking to identify a funding source to provide ukuleles to all schools.

Q: How will the NGSS changes affect the high school science classes?

A: We are expanding STEMScopes (supplemental curriculum) to support our high school classes

Q: In light of the upcoming planned development for the “promenade” area around the mall, what does BUSD have planned to accommodate all of the incoming families? 765 Apartments where Ikea used to be located, 265 apartments where Office Depot now exists, and 70 condominium units where Corner Bakery now stands. That’s a lot of new residents to Burbank. Many of our schools are already bursting at the seams. This directly affects enrollment at Miller, Emerson, Jefferson, Washington, Muir, and BHS. Can these schools handle more population? Is there a plan in place for this? Because it’s coming, and BUSD should be getting ahead of it. Has research been started and have projections been made? Can the Horace Mann facility be converted to accommodate? Do they plan to expand existing schools or build a whole new school to accommodate?

How does this affect class size and staffing?

A: We are in conversations with the City Manager to better understand the potential impact to our schools. In addition, we have started to explore possible options if enrollment were to increase. Finally, our demographer factors in all potential developments into our enrollment forecasts.

The developer hopes to complete the “Ikea” apartment project by 2020. This is what they are saying on their site, iheartBurbank.com:

The Burbank Unified School District is fully supportive of this project. Enrollment at the District has been trending downward the last several years, even with its policy of open enrollment for Burbank-based businesses. While some schools in our district are at capacity, the vast majority are well below where they should be When enrollment suffers, so do programs. We need more students to provide the best possible education experience to the community. Burbank Unified School District also has over 1,000 employees who can’t find a home in the city.

Is it true that enrollment is downward trending?

A: Yes, residential enrollment has been downward trending. Last year we increased interdistrict permits up to 1,200 in order to increase our enrollment. Here is the video from the Board meeting http://burbankusd.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=&clip_id=7624&meta_id=308047#

If that is the case then why have we been seeing modular buildings being added on many campuses?

A: Measure S is mostly replacing old bungalows with new modular. In addition, we need additional classrooms due to our movement of 24:1 class sizes.

Are the schools directly affected, the ones east of the I-5, the ones that are trending downward in enrollment?

A: Enrollment patterns vary year to year based on several factors, please see the video above for the latest information.

If not would some students who live east of the I-5 be sent across town to attend school if there is no room for them in their school of residence?

A: If necessary, we always attempt to find a school closest to the neighborhood school.

How would it be determined which students have to attend out of their residence area? Are there students on intra-district transfers be uprooted and sent back to their school of residence? This is a concern for many families who have siblings that may be split up and assigned to different schools, or that rely on their children being able to walk to and from school, after school functions, after school practices, and events.

A: If a school is at maximum we follow board policy http://gamutonline.net/district/burbank/DisplayPolicy/477671/

Q: At a high school, can a student audit a class for no grade? For example, if a student takes a zero period plus six regular periods for a total of 7 classes, could the student audit one of those classes for no grade and no credit? They would still be taking 6 classes for credit and on track to graduate on time.

A: No, we do not allow students to audit classes.

Q: Can you please share how money was donated from the singing competition that was held at Luther called Burbank Singing Star and how the funds plan to be used? They stated in the program that the proceeds from the event will go to Burbank Unified School District.

A: We have not received the donation yet.

Q: Can we get a list of what the Film LA money has been spent on for the past 2-3 years?

A: The majority of the money is allocated to school sites that host the filming. Please check with your administrator for the details.

Q: Every single school struggles with movie night because they don’t have proper screens, projectors or a sound system. Even Emerson with their giant screen donated by Disney Studios. It is so big and cumbersome that no one wants to drag it out and use it. Plus, it is too complicated for those that are not savvy. My thought is this – would the district office be willing to buy the movie system set up for $1,000 – $1,500 all in – and rent it out to each Burbank school? We all need it but can’t afford to buy a decent system. To rent it is $700 per time. For the district to buy it is so much more cost effective. Then we could rent it for $100 per time. The district would make their money back quickly because my guess is the other schools would rent it from the district too.

A: Unfortunately, we do not have a good place to store the equipment and we do not have the staff who would manage reserving, transporting, and setting up/breaking down the equipment.

Q: Is bond funding paying for the new school fencing? Why did all the fencing need to be replaced?

A: Yes, bond funding is paying for the new fencing. It is being replaced because most of the fencing is old and rusting. In addition, we are moving to 1-inch fencing instead of 2-inch fencing in order to increase security.

Q: Why do kids need to carry around 15 lbs of paper? My daughter’s backpack is way too heavy. It weighs 15 lbs. and according to her doc, it’s double the weight it should be. She has a lot of shoulder and head and neck pains and the doc said it’s from the backpack. Now I asked other parents and many of us feel the same thing. It has a notebook/ binder that has all papers from all subjects. We keep a set of books at home but still there are some things, like a reading book that she is required to carry. I told her to empty out her notebook, but she says that teachers say to keep the papers for constant accessibility. She would take a rolling backpack but it’s not allowed??? Why?? I think from a health standpoint you guys need to seriously look at this issue. It’s not healthy…Glendale allows rolling backpacks… why not BUSD?

A: Please discuss with your teachers about what needs to be carried in the backpacks versus what does not. Rolling backpacks are not allowed because they create a tripping hazard in the hallways.