Letter: Let Them Learn

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Letter to the Editor

This letter addressed to Dr. Drati, SMMUSD Board of Education and Malibu community.

As our school district examines our interdistrict and intra district permit policies, the MMS/MHS teachers who have signed below would like to make our position clear.

We believe that interdistrict and intra district permits should continue to be open to all students interested in attending Malibu schools.

Our current practice of accepting all students should continue because discontinuing the ability of interested students to attend Malibu schools on permits will be detrimental to Malibu schools in many ways.

If the current permit process is changed in Malibu:

1) our already declining student enrollment will decline so much that the viability of our Malibu schools will be in serious jeopardy. (There are currently 188 TK-12 students on permit in Malibu schools, out of a total of 1,395 students currently attending Malibu schools.)

2) our district’s commitment to social justice, diversity and inclusion will be seriously compromised.

3) Many of our permit families are from unincorporated Malibu and/or were affected by the fire. After such a devastating natural disaster from which we are still reeling, it seems unthinkable that we would revoke permits from families who live in Seminole Springs, Yerba Buena, Topanga, County Line, Malibou Lake, Upper Latigo, Deer Creek, Castellamare and Monte Nido. Grandfathering in current students is not good enough for the longevity of our schools and communities.

4) further teacher cuts will be inevitable.

5) all extra-curricular activities, including sports and all art programs, will be decimated. (Current data shows that out of the 103 students on permit at MMS/MHS, 18 are in orchestra, 11 are in band, seven are in choir and 37 are athletes. For our small school, these numbers are significant.)

6) We are spending millions of dollars to build new schools, but without permits, where are these students going to come from?

7) equitable permit rules between Santa Monica and Malibu will create inequitable school programs with loss of course offerings, sports and arts programs in Malibu.

We understand that we are in a budget crisis. We advocate keeping budget cuts as far from our students and classrooms as possible.

We recommend moratoriums on the following:

1. Hiring of administrative staff at the district level,

2. All non state-required professional development,

3. Consultation services including Innovate Ed. We believe we are more than capable of leading this work with teachers and staff. 

Kim Auer

Didier Beauvoir 

Marie Beck

Carla Bowman-Smith 

Eric Carrier

Craig Chavez

Brian Corrigan

Kim Costalupes 

Katie Dahm

Anna Deshautelle 

Jordan Ervin

Thor Evensen

Lynne Flowers

Amy Galipeau 

Jennifer Gonzalez 

Thomas Hacker

Julia Cheri Hoos

Ari Jacobs

Julie Jones

Charles Kertesz 

John Kibler

Daniel Lambert

Lisa Lambert 

Katherine Lapajne 

Mark Larsen

Richard Lawson 

Brigette Leonard 

Diana Martinez

Alex Mayle

Joellen McNaughton 

Andrew Meyer

Todd Montgomery 

Michael Mulligan 

Danielle Murawski 

Linh Nguyen 

Adam Panish

Jodi Plaia

Maureen Rosen 

Sarah Ryan

Sean Ryan 

Makenna Samsel 

Audrey Scoffie 

Timothy Segesman 

Nahla Seikali 

Cynthia Smith 

Heidi Smith

Krysta Sorensen 

Rachel Stowell 

Bonnie Thoreson 

Jack Tucker

Alexis Wilson

Mary Yarber

Maia Zander