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Burbank Unified School District

By Max Zimbert | December 9, 2009
WEST BURBANK — The Burbank Unified School District confirmed Supt. Kevin Jolly’s resignation Monday, announcing that the top administrator would finish out a year on the job before stepping down June 30. In a statement released late Monday night, school board President Dave Kemp said Jolly “brought passion, energy and progressive ideas in his time with the district.” But, that as Burbank Unified faced major challenges in the months ahead, “the district’s focus must be forward-looking and on ensuring that a leadership team and structure is in place that is able to guide the district through this critical transitional period.
By Max Zimbert | November 18, 2009
WEST BURBANK — Joel Shapiro, deputy superintendent of Burbank Unified School District, will leave to head up South Pasadena Unified School District on Dec. 7. Shapiro is entering his 38th year in education and leaves Burbank Unified after more than five years. “It is really an exciting challenge, particularly in this day and age, to take on the challenge of being a superintendent,” he said. “It’s also something I undertake knowing how much I’m going to miss Burbank, especially all the people I worked with.
November 13, 2009
Last year, when the Burbank Unified School District made the hard decision to lay off 34 teachers in an effort to help bridge the gap between expenses and state funding cuts, it was a stark reminder of just how dependent schools are on the whims — and poor management — of Sacramento. With the governor’s office renewing threats this week of even further cuts this winter, districts throughout the state are again beginning to see pink in terms of slips, and red in terms of budget forecasts.
October 27, 2009
ABC Channel 7 is promoting a current feature asking viewers to send in items that irritate them, and they will try to find out the causes and solutions. Let me say, they do not have the budget to cover the things that irritate me about present-day conditions. First, the losers who wear their belts below their butts — look into that disgusting trend. Second, morons who wear their baseball caps backward. Third, the other day I was waiting in a line to get a pizza at Costco and looked up and down the line on both sides and every single person except myself was either texting or on a cell phone — and I will bet you my next residual check that not one of them had anything valid or essential to text or talk about.
By Max Zimbert | October 21, 2009
BURBANK — Dozens of Burbank Unified School District employees and teachers last week pushed back against proposals to raise student achievement goals even higher than the tough benchmarks met last school year, arguing they had already tapped out available resources to make those gains. The amount of dejection and exasperation thrown at the proposal to further boost student achievement, attendance and college admission rates would likely delay an agreement, some board members acknowledged.
By Max Zimbert | October 7, 2009
BURBANK ? Standing in front of a classroom of third-graders, Burbank Unified Supt. Kevin Jolly asked how many children wanted to ride in a limousine. The room lit up. He asked how many children like reading. The room grew brighter. And before exiting, he asked how many students would read a book even without a limo ride and lunch at Warner Bros. By their reactions, the students must have been hungry. The Burbank Unified School District is engaged in a reading competition that rewards students with a voracious appetite for books.
By Max Zimbert | October 2, 2009
BURBANK — The latest standardized test results released by state education officials Tuesday showed significant progress in narrowing the achievement gap between white and minority students in the Burbank Unified School District. Latino students gained 20 points on the Academic Performance Index, a vital state-mandated benchmark, compared with the year prior, according to the report. And while students with learning disabilities remained the lowest-scoring test takers, they gained almost 20 points to be proficient in English language arts and mathematics.
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