A soft launch was held Friday to introduce about 80 educators, community leaders and others to the future Vallejo Early Learning Center.
“The ELC will provide an age-appropriate, safe-learning environment for children, infants, toddlers, preschoolers, (ages) 0-5, in a location that has age-appropriate, development-appropriate facilities, including bathrooms in each classroom,” Juan Cisneros, executive director of Child Start, said in a statement released on Monday.
The Solano County Board of Supervisors in June purchased the former Beverly Hills Elementary School site from Vallejo City Unified School District for $2.8 million. Additional administrative fees and closing costs added another estimated $7,281. Solano received $1 million in gap funding from the state to go toward the project.
Source: Sneak peek given at future Early Learning Center site | News | dailyrepublic.com
By Thomas Gase
As Vallejo City Unified School District Superintendent William Spalding addressed the crowd at 501 Starr Ave. on Friday afternoon, he couldn’t help but be in awe of the new hardcourt floor inside the facility. It was shiny and new, without a single scratch.
He wants that appearance to change immediately.
“In my time being around schools, this is as good as it gets,” Spalding said, as laughs and cheers rang out from the audience — many of them local dignitaries. “But we want our kids in here, playing basketball, playing pickleball, whatever they’re doing. As this place gets kind of worn it means that it’s being used well. That’s good for everyone.”
Source: New sports gym opens in Vallejo – Times Herald Online
The Solano County supervisors on Tuesday transferred the former Beverly Hills Elementary School property in Vallejo to Child Start Inc. to be used as an early learning center.
Supervisor Erin Hannigan called it a “proud moment” in the county’s history of supporting children 5 and younger, and Supervisor Monica Brown noted the need for such centers in the county.
“Early education is what the future of society rests on,” Brown said.
Source: County approves contract for early learning center renovations | Company | dailyrepublic.com
By Thomas Gase
Vallejo City Unified School District (VUCSD) Superintendent William Spalding has announced he will be retiring at the end of June.
According to a news release, Spalding will have his last day of his 37-year career on June 30. He’s been at the helm of the VCUSD for three years.
Spalding was not available for comment before the Times-Herald Friday deadline, but in a news release he expressed gratitude for the portion of his career in Vallejo, initially as a vice principal contributing to the establishment of Jesse Bethel High School and most recently as Superintendent.
“My return to the district granted me the privilege to reconnect with a community that holds a special place in my heart,” Spalding shared in the release. “The support and trust extended by the Board of Education have been instrumental in driving positive change and progress.”
Source: William Spalding announces he will be retiring in June – Times Herald Online
It was smiles and high-fives as 900 participants ran, walked and skipped during the Girls on the Run Fabulous Fall 5K on Sunday at Mare Island in Vallejo.
Presented by Napa’s Community Projects Inc., the event raised $17,000 for Girls on the Run programs, which inspire girls in grades 3-8 to build their confidence, kindness and decision-making skills.
“This is by far the best ever GOTR 5K,” said “Magical” Michela Ward, a 10-year volunteer life coach at K.I. Jones Elementary School in Fairfield. “Running through the Wendy the Welder space was so empowering.”
Source: Girls on the Run North Bay hosts 5K fundraiser
By Thomas Gase
Much of the nation and Solano County were like Bill Haley and the Comets on Thursday morning — ready to shake, rattle and roll.
A day after an earthquake hit Northern California, schools across the nation and in Vallejo prepared to deal with “the big one” by participating in the ShakeOut earthquake drill at 10:19 a.m. Pacific Standard Time.
According to www.shakeout.org, there were more than 56 million people participating in the drill globally. Of those, most came came the United States, with 10 million participants coming from California alone for the drill that began taking place yearly in 2008. Of the 10 million in California, Solano County had 45,938 participants, including 40,188 in K-12 schools and districts as well as another 1,287 in college universities and 579 in childcare and preschools. Non-profit organizations in the county had 1,220 people do the drill.
Source: Solano students, teachers prepare for the ‘big one’ – Times Herald Online
By Thomas Gase
Dalton Melby began running recently in order to join his dad in the fight to lose some weight.
On Saturday night the only thing that Melby lost while running was his competition.
The American Canyon High School senior won the 2023 Vallejo Waterfront Weekend 5K Glo Run — a race for education presented by the Vallejo City Unified School District and Griffin Technology Academies.
Melby won the 5K run with a time of 24 minutes and 13 seconds.Melby, a member of his school’s tennis team, may have to think about another sport after his win.
Source: Vallejo shines in annual Glo Run – Times Herald Online
The Vallejo City Unified School District unveiled a three-year plan to address dismal student attendance rates in Vallejo schools which dropped to dramatic new lows during the COVID-19 pandemic at a district board meeting on Wednesday night.
District Superintendent William Spalding said during the meeting that chronic absenteeism is a major concern for the district not only because it affects student learning outcomes, but because it also figures into the district’s state funding. With chronic absenteeism rates hovering around 50%, that could translate to millions of dollars in lost funding for the district.
Source: Vallejo school district rolls out three-year plan to improve low attendance
By Ryan Geller
The Vallejo City Unified School District Board of Education voted unanimously Wednesday to release Griffin Technology Academies from a compliance agreement that required the charter school network to correct safety, maintenance and financial issues after district officials reported that it had sufficiently addressed their concerns.
The vote ended a compliance agreement that required Griffin’s four charter schools to address 19 conditions related to student health and safety, facilities maintenance and financial management that the district alleged were violations of the school’s charter and California law.
Source: School board finds Vallejo charter network fixed issues that threatened status
By Thomas Gase
With the 2023-24 school year in its own first inning of sorts, CC and Amber Sabathia wanted to make the perfect delivery to all Vallejo first-grade students.
Free backpacks and school supplies were given out by the Sabathia PitCCh In Foundation on Thursday morning to every single first grader in Vallejo — a tradition of the Sabathia pair for about two decades. Although the first day of school had come and gone in the Vallejo City Unified School District, many students, teachers and school staff members were happy to have the support from CC and Amber.
Source: CC Sabathia makes perfect ‘first’ pitch – Times Herald Online
By Thomas Gase
Dr. Seuss once wrote, “You’re off to great places. Today is your first day! Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way!”
Monday in Vallejo hundreds of students began a climb up their mountain.
It was the first official day of school Monday in the Vallejo City Unified School District, which meant a time for students to walk excitedly to meet their new classmates, teachers, schedules, books, desks, playground and sometimes even – for kindergartners and high school freshmen – their new schools.
At Elmer Cave Language Academy in Vallejo, it was also a time for parents and guardians to walk their little ones to class for the first time. For Ben and Mary (declined to give last name) that meant walking their daughter Della to her kindergarten class.
Source: Vallejo students learn to fly on first day of instruction – Times Herald Online
There is a flurry of activity on Saturday at City Park in Vallejo and a few hundred people offering a variety of educational services. So for a moment, Watch Me Grow Inc. founder Jameelah Hanif is taking it all in.
“Wow, powerful things happen when you collaborate with others,” she says with a smile wider than the Grand Canyon.
For the third straight year Hanif has helped put together a community resource fair — this year called “Solano Families Thrive”– on the second Saturday of August. The event aims to help kids that will go back to school, which for the Vallejo City Unified School District means this Monday.
Source: Hanif happy to watch students grow – Times Herald Online
Twenty-nine teachers joined Solano Resource Conservation District and area experts for a three-day professional development training in Solano County’s open spaces.
The Solano Water Institute gave teachers a local perspective on water and conservation issues that they can bring back to their classrooms. Teachers also had time to share ideas and enjoy the outdoors before kicking off a new school year.
Each day of the training featured hands-on lessons from Project WET, an award-winning environmental education curriculum created by the Water Education Foundation.
Source: Teachers get hands-on training in county’s open spaces | News | dailyrepublic.com
By Jordan Baker
Perseverance was the word of the day for Vallejo High School and John Finney High School 2023 graduates on Monday.
“You’ve shown perseverance,” Vallejo City Unified School District Superintendent William Spalding told the group at a special ceremony for students unable to participate in June’s graduation ceremony because of a lack of credits.
“Maybe not the exact way you planned it, but what you’ve done is very important,” Spalding said. “You’ve gone to finish up the work. You’ve shown the type of perseverance you’ll need your whole life.
Source: It’s never too late to graduate – Times-Herald
By Thomas Gase
Three schools in the Vallejo City Unified School District (VCUSD) earned six-year accreditation status this week –Vallejo Adult School at Al Berenguer Educational Center, as well as Jesse Bethel and Vallejo High Schools. The trio received the status from the Accrediting Commission for Schools, Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
The three schools went through a process that included conducting an in-depth self-study, hosting a visit by fellow educators, and engaging all stakeholders in a follow-up process of implementing, monitoring, and refining the resulting schoolwide action plan.
“The six-year accreditation of three of our schools is a testament to our staff and faculty’s continuous work,” Vallejo City Unified School District Superintendent William Spalding said in a news release. “The Vallejo Adult School has remained a stellar resource to Vallejo’s adult community and a pride point of our District. We know there is still work to be done at our high schools to improve, but this is an endorsement of our improvement efforts underway in our schools.”
Source: Three Vallejo City Unified schools receive notable accreditation distinctions – Times-Herald
By Thomas Gase
Two former Vallejo schools — Beverly Hills Elementary and Franklin Middle School — were purchased this week for lease by First 5 Solano and the Greater Vallejo Recreation District.F
ranklin Middle School now has a 30-year lease with GVRD for the venue to be used for recreation programs, while First 5 Solano sealed a deal for the former Beverly Hills Elementary to create the first multi-agency early learning center in the state.
Located at 1450 Coronel Ave. in Vallejo, the learning center was purchased by First 5 from the Vallejo School District for $2.8 million. The center, slated to be completed by June 2025, aims to be a hub for early learning that will provide a variety of early care and education opportunities for infants through preschoolers and families of all income levels, while creating economic opportunities for providers and filling a critical need in the county.
Source: Former Vallejo schools purchased for lease by First 5 Solano and GVRD – Times-Herald
The Solano County supervisors on Tuesday approved the purchase of the former Beverly Hills Elementary School site for the development of an early learning center.
The purchase price to the Vallejo City Unified School District is $2.8 million, the county reported. Additional administrative fees and closing costs add another estimated $7,281.
The full amount is in the recently approved 2023-24 Recommended Budget, with $2 million from the Accumulated Capital Outlay account of the General Fund. The remaining $800,000, plus the administrative fees and closing costs, are budgeted in the First 5 Solano recommended budget.
Source: Supervisors approve purchase of Early Learning Center site
By Thomas Gase
Griffin Technology Academies proudly commemorated the accomplishments of its newly minted high school graduates this week with a pair of graduation ceremonies.
Thursday evening at Touro University, approximately graduates of Mare Island Technology Academy High School celebrated. A day later, a ceremony marked the achievements of the first two graduates from Griffin Academy High School. They not only graduated as juniors, they also leave for college with AA degrees, in addition to their high school diplomas.
Both ceremonies were celebrated on Mare Island, the second one outside Arden Park, amid large crowds of parents, teachers, administrators, and community members.
Source: Griffin Technology Academies celebrates high school graduation ceremonies – Times-Herald
By Thomas Gase
Vallejo High School’s Class of 2023 graduation ceremony featured seven student speeches — one by the ASB Class President, four by salutatorians and two more by valedictorians.
Although the speeches were passionate, the volume reached its highest pitch on one topic.
The speakers focused on their fellow graduates’ freshman year, which took place under the COVID-19 pandemic and away from the Vallejo High campus, which turned 154 years old this year.
Source: Vallejo High School graduates ‘persevere’ to earn diplomas – Times-Herald
By Thomas Gase
Many of the Jesse Bethel High School students graduating on Friday morning may call their commencement the realization of a dream. However, it was something else for William Spalding.
Spalding, the Vallejo City Unified School District Superintendent, told the Class of 2023 they should be thanking “their people” who helped get them to this rewarding moment.
Spalding told the students to “look to their left, and then look their right” before waving. He continued by asking the 2023 class to look at a few rows of counselors and teachers sitting nearby.
Source: Bethel High graduates accomplish a ‘real’ feat – Times-Herald