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RUSD Board Members Address Multiple Items

The Riverbank Unified School District board meet in regular session on Tuesday, March 7 where several issues were discussed including the College Readiness Block Grant, a new softball field scoreboard, and construction of a shade structure to begin in the near future for Mesa Verde Elementary.

The College Readiness Block Grant (CRBG) funding expenditures are designed to increase or improve services for students to ensure college readiness. As listed on the agenda, this grant was in Governor Brown’s 2016-17 budget and is money that is available to all educational agencies that have grades 9 through 12 students. This grant was approved by the school board.

Riverbank Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Daryl Camp explained that Riverbank High School intends to bolster efforts to expose and prepare students for colleges through the following actions and services: measure the impact of services through the UC transcript evaluation services, pay college examination fees for students (Advanced Placement, PSAT, SAT/ACT), college field trips, online programs to increase the number of and access to UC/CSU approved courses, including Advanced Placement, formalizing partnerships with local colleges and universities to provide students opportunities for earning dual enrollment credit, and career exploration/planning services.

“Riverbank USD is grateful that the state legislature and governor made these funds available to all districts with students in grades 9-12 throughout the state,” stated Camp. “We’ll use these funds over the next three years to supplement ongoing efforts to assist students with post-secondary opportunities.

“The additional funding complements our efforts to support students in learning about and preparing for college.”

Camp added that a few years ago the District restored the Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) program at Cardozo Middle School (CMS) and Riverbank High School. The AVID program is nationally known for supporting students to prepare for success in college. Additionally, for the last three years, all sixth grade students at Cardozo Middle School have had the opportunity to visit a college campus. Last month, CMS students visited California State University, Sacramento and the State Capitol. Last year, they visited the University of the Pacific and the previous year, students visited the University of Merced.

The AVID program held a Parent Summit recently for school district families to provide information and a presentation to promote higher education after high school.

In other business, a Riverbank High School softball scoreboard was unanimously approved at the meeting last week with authorization given to proceed with materials testing and an inspection.

There has been buzz around Mesa Verde Elementary for the past few years that a shade structure for the students would be ideal. The board approved the construction of a shade structure on campus. The Parent Teacher Club (PTC) raised $17,000 over the past few years to purchase the structure and RUSD will fund the cost of installing it.

“It’s great that parents and the community worked together to raise funds to support our students,” added Camp. “Mesa Verde opened to students about seven years ago and has provided a wonderful learning environment. The shade structure will further enhance what is already a beautiful campus.

“I appreciate the leadership of principal, Laurie Sacknitz, for bringing parents together to better the campus.”