September 2017
Dear Valley Residents:

School is back in session in the Lagunitas School District and important things are happening at your local school!

Lagunitas teachers and support staff are doing a great job of educating our children, improving the quality of life for our entire community.
Our school offers unique, child-centered programs that honor parent and student choice and that prepare kids for the next step in their schooling.

Unique Public School Programs

Currently the District offers two elementary school programs and a middle school:
The Open Classroom: Focusing on student choice and self-advocacy while ensuring that students master essential academic content.
The Montessori Program: Emphasizing world citizenship, student choice and practical, hands-on experiences.
The Middle School: Preparing students academically for high school while enhancing the self-advocacy and relationship skills for which the Lagunitas School District is so well known.

Funding
On Tuesday, November 7, voters in the San Geronimo Valley will be asked to vote on Measure A, the of the parcel tax that that has been in effect for the last eight years.

While district resources cannot be used to advocate for or against any ballot measure or candidate, it is appropriate and important for the District to provide non-biased information to the community so that all voters have a clear idea of what the parcel tax is and how it effects our local school:
• The Lagunitas School District has used a parcel tax since 1987 in order to fund of programs and services that benefit our children and our community.
• The Lagunitas School Parcel Tax pays for 5 classroom teachers, a Physical Education Specialist, technology support and a portion of our Library Specialist. We have been able to keep our class sizes relatively low, typically 24-28 students per class, because the district uses parcel tax funds for teachers.
• Parcel tax funds are not used to pay for other items such as administrative costs, facilities, retirement benefits or extra programs.
• The Parcel tax is paid by property owners on a per-parcel basis, currently $505.04 per year in addition to other local taxes. All eligible parcels are taxed at the same rate.
• Measure A includes the same cost of living adjustment that has been in place for the last 8 years (6.5%), an amount that is projected to the same level of service to students.
• Residents who are age 65 or over may opt out of paying the parcel tax. The Lagunitas School District actively supports and assists local seniors who choose to opt out.
• Residents who rent their homes do not pay the parcel tax.
• If Measure A does not pass the school will have to cut approximately 20% from its budget – close to $700,000. Such a cut would certainly cause a profound reduction in teaching and support staff and would result in larger class sizes and a substantial reduction in student services.
• If Measure A does pass, the District will have the financial stability necessary to maintain quality programs.
Please share this information with others in the community. I invite you to contact me by e-mail if you have questions about the parcel tax or the Lagunitas School District.
John Carroll,
Superintendent
jcarroll@lagunitas.org