I'm writing to encourage all members of our community to vote yes on Measure C, the parcel tax for the Menlo Park City School District.
I am a math teacher and boys' lacrosse coach at Menlo-Atherton High School. I have a daughter who is a freshman in high school and two young boys who will be attending Oak Knoll in just a few years.
I have taught and coached over a thousand high school students in the past 14 years. Many of these students are well prepared for high school due to their experiences in elementary and middle school. Unfortunately, some are not well prepared. The students who come unprepared for the rigors of a high school like Menlo-Atherton will face an uphill battle to succeed.
A strong elementary and middle school education plays an integral role in a student's success in high school, college and beyond. Without the passage of Measure C, our schools — Laurel, Encinal, Oak Knoll and Hillview — will be under-funded. We cannot let that happen.
Doris Lane, Menlo Park
Board president explains the need for Measure C
The city of Menlo Park is known for its award-winning schools, which have achieved national and state recognition because of the tremendous support of teachers, administrators, parents and community members.
We need Measure C to preserve our schools, which we have worked so hard to develop. The Menlo Park City School District faces a $2 million budget deficit next year due to growing enrollment and reduced state funding. Currently, we spend 87 percent of the budget on teachers and other essential staff. Future cuts will come at the expense of teachers.
In March, the school board issued 14 preliminary layoff notices to teachers that will be finalized if Measure C does not pass. Those layoffs mean more students will be added to each class, teacher preparation time will be reduced, programs will be cut, and students' classroom experience will be compromised.
I am voting "yes" on Measure C to give our district the resources it needs to maintain the quality of our children's education.
Jeff Child, president
Menlo Park City School District Board of Trustees
Ekedahl family is behind Measure C
My parents and I have lived in Menlo Park for over 40 years. I attended both Oak Knoll and Hillview and my mother and father put in countless hours in the classrooms helping to make sure the schools had everything they needed.
Since that time, we have seen enrollment grow quickly at Oak Knoll and the other schools in the Menlo Park City district. While many things have changed, the one thing that has remained consistent is the support the Menlo Park community has provided to keep our schools strong and to provide the best education possible to our children.
This community has a history of offering support in times of need. By 2017, enrollment in our four schools is expected to have increased 44 percent over what it was in 2000, and because we are a "basic aid" district we receive no additional funding for each new student.
This month we are being asked to step up again by passing Measure C. As parents and grandparents of three boys at Oak Knoll, we are frightened that we may lose some of the very important educational programs that our schools have been able to offer, including art, PE, music, and a fulltime trained librarian.
Please join us in voting for Measure C.
Phil, Maureen, Robert and Diana Ekedahl
Bay Laurel Drive and Chateau Drive, Menlo Park
Pediatricians urge a yes vote on 'C'
As pediatricians with children in the Menlo Park City School District, we support the passage of Measure C.
Without Measure C funding, enrichment programs and teachers, including our physical education specialists, will be cut. Physical activity is known to improve academic achievement and positively influence concentration, memory and classroom behavior, as well as improve overall health and well-being.
Our current skilled physical education specialists provide an enjoyable, organized introduction to physical activities, including individual and team sports, promoting basic skills, and fostering an enjoyment of physical activity that extends beyond the school day.
Please join us in supporting measure C to keep our children active and healthy.
Katrien Burlinson and Laurie Chiang, M.D.s
Community pediatricians and district parents