UPDATE: Walnut Creek Group Begins Campaign to Split from MDUSD, Create “Northgate Unified School District”

April 4, 2014 11:38 am · 120 comments

northgate

An unknown group of parents in Walnut Creek are apparently trying to start the Northgate Unified School District (NUSD), which would be made up of all schools located in Walnut Creek that are currently a part of the Mt. Diablo Unified School District, according to the group’s website.

The website, http://nusd.moonfruit.com/, says “We have begun the process to form a new Northgate Unified School District. Our intent is to keep our NHS community attendance area intact and include the rest of MDUSD Walnut Creek into our boundaries. We are not seeking unification with the Walnut Creek School District or Acalanes Union High School District. This is a long and complicated process with many unanswered questions at this time. In the spirit of community we want to keep you informed. Anyone who is interested in being involved please sign-up for our enews and follow us on facebook.”

Several emails have been sent to many parents and residents by two individuals who are apparently involved in the plan to split.

One of the emails, sent out by Andrea Smethurst, says “Apparently, a MDUSD board has asked us to submit a proposal to split off. I am sending this to a you because I thought this might be of interest and you might want to attend the informational meeting about this on Sunday April 6 at 10:00 a.m. The location is Linda Loza’s home in Walnut Creek. I know nothing more about this and I know some may be in favor and some opposed. See email below to rsvp about attending the meeting.

Another email, sent by Alisa Mac Cormac, says “We have begun a query to form a new Northgate Unified School District. Our intent is to keep our NHS community attendance area intact and we would like to include the rest of MDUSD Walnut Creek into our boundaries. We are not seeking unification with the Walnut Creek School District or Acalanes Union High School District. After a lengthy discussion with Superintendent Meyer, Board President Barbara Oaks, and Board Member Cheryl Hansen, Barbara Oaks has surprised us by asking to include a proposal on the April 9th MDUSD Board Agenda to schedule a future workshop to review the idea of breaking off a portion of the MDUSD to create a new school district. I am writing to invite you to an informational Northgate community meeting, to be held prior to the MDUSD board meeting, to discuss the prospect of our own district with our neighbors and friends. The meeting will be this Sunday April 6 at 10:00 a.m. The location is Linda Loza’s home in Walnut Creek. To RSVP, please email: NorthgateUSD@gmail.com Or log-on to our new Northgate Unified School District web site: http://nusd.moonfruit.com and sign up if you want up-to-date information. This is a long and complicated process with many unanswered questions at this time. In the spirit of community we want to inform you and continue to keep you informed. Anyone who is interested in being involved please let us know. With thanks always, Alisa Mac Cormac

At this time, no official proposal has been given to the MDUSD Board of Education, and we can confirm that although individual board members might have directed the group on where to begin, the entire MDUSD Board of Education as a whole has not asked the group to submit a proposal.

It is unknown how this plan would affect children who live in Concord’s Lime Ridge and Crossings neighborhoods, who attend schools in Walnut Creek.

An email seeking comments from the two individuals listed above has not been returned.

UPDATE: One of the planners, Linda Loza, responded, saying “We are not proposing a district based solely on City boundaries. Our goal is clear, we want to include the entire Northgate attendance area. The families in Limeridge, the Crossings, and Crystal Ranch are our neighbors, friends, and supporters of our schools and educational programs. We are not excluding them in our proposal.”

101 Julio April 5, 2014 at 5:24 PM

Mt Diablo Unified School District has been very bad for so many years I have forgotten how many it actually is. Stay and make it better is the answer but I commend Ygnacio for going Charter. People need to look into the people they are electing and then just stay on top of the school board. Who goes to those meetings or city council meetings. Very very very few.

102 Question for CVHS parents April 5, 2014 at 5:36 PM

I see many posts from parents who presumably have or will have students at CVHS…..Based upon your experience….a positive one getting the school chartered. WHY would u begrudge northgate for trying something to get out from under the very poor district they are managed by. I don’t get it. One parent bragging their scores will be better and we are pissed. That sounds like adolescent competition. Really don’t get it. I was so happy for clayton to get that accomplished as were many of my peers in northgste area. It saddens me that since it’s happened all I’ve seen is a whole lotta bragging about your school and sour grapes at northgate.

103 Pro Fi April 5, 2014 at 7:10 PM

Just a thought – Is this the Northgates’ parents attempt to privatize a public school with taxpayer money? I was looking at the demographics for Northgate and it seems as though less then 10% of students are non-white or non-asian. Hmmmmmmmm…….This movement is reminiscent of of the separate but equal mentality prevalent in the past.

104 Sara from Chrystal Ranch April 5, 2014 at 7:12 PM

There is an irony in that Norhtgate, which fought the CV charter conversion so rabidly, is now again looking to cut and run. Northgate has tried secession, a charter, and now they are attempting to form a new district.
The school’s principal.is under fire for accepting $ 40,000 from the parent’s group for serving as a club advisor for Model UN, typically a teacher’s role.. This is the same man who acted as the former superintendent’s voice in attempting to scuttle our efforts by creating a divisive atmosphere in the Northgate community..What strange timing is this?
There is also this: From what information is leaking out of this movement, some of the central planners include a NHS parent who has led tprevious efforts to leave the district, a very recent former superintendent of the MDUSD, a current, and very highly paid, high school principal in the area, and a MDUSD board member who represents the Northgate community,
There are parents who are genuinely concerned about their school but much of this stems from e a fetid combination of envy, payback, class warfare, petty political ambitions, and a lack of professional accountability at the administrative levels. For those concerned parents, and we know a number of them this is a very anxious and uncertain time.
We moved our daughter from Northgate when CVHS went charter.We are very pleased that we did. She has been challenged academically, supported, and surrounded by a staff and community that puts its students first.
We do wish the best for the students in the Northgate attendance area; we wish them the best education, the best leadership, and the best future. In the end, it is all about the students. It just right now feels like it is all about the adults.

105 ANNONeeemoose April 5, 2014 at 7:22 PM

I fail to understand and I don’t see explained, the laws or procedure in which this could ever take place. Why not go charter like CV? That at least has breadcrumbs down the path that worked. Can someone point me to an article where another group of schools were able to secede from their district?

106 Pro Fi April 5, 2014 at 9:15 PM

@ Sara from CR – Well stated. I appreciate you candor and YES! This is all about the adults.

107 Maya Piñon April 5, 2014 at 9:23 PM

What does it really matter where any of these kids go to school whatever race they are or socioeconomic background, huh??? None of these kids are any better or worse than the next kid in another neighborhood whether it’s Crossings or YV area, Clayton or Walnut Creek (oh, and get over yourself Lime Ridge Resident, what’s so hot about Lime Ridge? Still in Skankerd aren’t you???) Every single last one of them are all the same, entitled young spoiled people who are more interested in being fixated on their cell phones, into sports teams and to hell with academics! You’re all a bunch of whiners who are raising the future generation of self entitled individuals who’ll want to start their first job earning $80k per year or “they just won’t do it” buncha little whiners. Yes, what is your response to that???

108 MDUSD Historian April 5, 2014 at 9:57 PM

check this out Dr. J

http://youtu.be/gDkLOGhccnM

109 Question for CVHS parents April 6, 2014 at 6:01 AM

Again….no one really on this board interested in bettering education ( my one and only goal for my 3 children)…..it’s all jealousy, sour grapes and petty comparisons. “CVHS is better “, “acalanes didht want u” u are “elitist ” attempting to better your child’s education.

Why shouldnt anyone take initiative and make improvements where needed? I will always do so still they take their last year of studies and maybe even farther because I love our community.

Crystal ranch, crossings, lime ridge peeps: look in the mirror. If this deal guaranteed 100% a northgate placement you’d support in a heartbeat.

110 Dexter April 6, 2014 at 9:26 AM

MDUSD is sh*t

If you have kids in WC going to school and you live deep in WC away from concord why should their school be lumped with tjay sh*t district with punk a$$ gangster wannabe kids whom most won’t go on to attend college as statistics for the district show. The parents were successful in life due to their hard work which allowed them to live in walnut creek. They want their kids to have a chance to be successful too.

111 #107 April 6, 2014 at 9:59 AM

Every kid deserves a great education, but having kids leave their community to go to a school miles away doesn’t work.

In PH, the middle school is 30% transfer in. Despite whether those kids are academically motivated it has created two separate student populations at the school that is very obvious to the teachers.

Why don’t we demand the MDUSD to do better for all our kids. Fix the schools in the socio-economically disadvantaged neighborhoods–not by throwing money at it–but by engaging the families and requiring more of them and the students,

There are plenty of parents who are lower income who want the best education for their kids but they don’t live near the good schools. The district needs to get innovated so that they can improve schools and communities.

112 MDUSD Historian #98 April 6, 2014 at 10:26 AM

I’m not sure I get your context. Seems like Paul Strange was right, but dramatic, about Loza. She is attempting to break off from the district so she certainly isn’t their #1 fan!

113 Positive Discrimination? Never! April 6, 2014 at 11:03 AM

It is abundantly clear to ALL of us what is going on. A few parents are trying to divide our Northgate community, yet again. We see you for who are, and what you really represent. It is our fault as parents, that we have not paid better attention to the board members and parent leaders that we have elected, and have not been following. Our Fault. We will not allow these key parents who are supposed to represent our entire Northgate High School Community to try to sell us something that smells so bad. Now Lime Ridge and the Crossings are at a small civil upheaval? Really? Be careful, these people are organized and tactical. Make no mistake, they wear 2 faces. Teachers are not able to voice their opinions, as they fear the retribution they will face from the hierarchy of their principal and his hand picked circle of teachers, who report and carry out his dirty work. We see you for what you are. We are all watching, and thank you for making it very clear to all of us that our children, even the Riff-Raff, that some left-wing person mentioned, deserve the absolute best, supportive learning environment that we can provide.

114 #113 April 6, 2014 at 1:57 PM

WTH? “We are all watching, and thank you for making it very clear to all of us that our children, even the Riff-Raff, that some left-wing person mentioned, deserve the absolute best, supportive learning environment that we can provide.”

Lol. That some left-wing person mentioned? I was thinking it was someone who was a Christian.

You sound like a looney.

115 anonymous April 7, 2014 at 1:52 PM

This is ignorant, segregation, classism at its best. Hold your heads up high walnut creek parents at least you should own your racism.

116 Connie Dobbs April 7, 2014 at 3:20 PM

You know, this debate could be settled with a barbed wire steel cage match.

117 anonymous April 7, 2014 at 4:49 PM

@Connie Dobbs

Be carful Connie Dobbs, you might be labeled ad “riff raft” because you suggested a low class event. If we add wine I’m sure it would be fine with the walnut creekers, as long as it’s over $30 a bottle.

118 A-PARENT April 7, 2014 at 6:20 PM

#113
I think #113 is very sane. My guess is that person hit it right on the nose.

Looney describes this whole scenario. Please do not insult all Christians!

119 Connie Dobbs April 7, 2014 at 10:53 PM

Oh, I’m the riffiest riff that ever riffed a raff. You ever meet any Piledrivers?

120 MDUSD Teacher April 8, 2014 at 7:38 AM

Yes, MDUSD has huge problems. But if everyone is just out to do what is best for THEIR kid and not all children nothing will ever change. MDUSD is too big. Why don’t all parents ban together and demand a better school district. Split it into an Elementary District and a Secondary District. By having a district that is focused on a smaller group of students there will be a better chance to support the teachers and students to make sure they have what they need. Come on people! All of these kids are the future of our community, not just the few that have parents rich enough to buy them their own school!

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