September 12, 2022
School Facility Improvement Community Forums
Please join us at one of the School Improvement Community Forums this week as we gather feedback on building a Long Range Facility Master Plan. You have the choice of virtual or in-person. If you cannot make the forum, please take the survey. Your voice matters.
Virtual Community Forum - Tuesday, September 13th from 6:30-8:00 pm. Click link to join.
In-Person Community Forum - Wednesday, September 14th from 6:30-8:00 pm at the Vista Innovation Center (836 Olive Avenue, Vista, CA 92083)
In-Person Community Forum - Thursday, September 15th from 6:30-8:00 pm at the Breeze Hill Elementary School MPR (1111 Melrose Way, Vista, CA 92081)
In-Person Community Forum - Tuesday, September 20the from 6:30-8:00 pm at the Foothill Oak Elementary School multi-purpose room or MPR (1370 Oak Avenue, Vista, CA 92084)
- In-Person Community Forum - Wednesday, September 21st from 6:30-8:00 pm at the Roosevelt Middle School multi-purpose room or MPR (850 Sagewood Drive, Oceanside, CA 92057)
Take the Survey - Click HERE
The Vista Unified School Board just passed two important resolutions that will continue to deepen our commitment to safety for our students, staff, and community. We will be arranging a series of forums and student assemblies in the coming months to take collective action on safety.
Festival of the Arts
Our students and staff are already hard at work preparing for the 18th Annual Festival of the Arts. This event will take over the entire Main Street in downtown Vista on Saturday, October 22nd from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. We will have music, dancing, drama, and incredible art displays that showcase the talent, skills, and abilities of Vista Unified students from kindergarten through high school. Please join us to celebrate the music and the arts in our community.
Vista Unified is actively recruiting to fill various certificated and classified positions. Classified positions include bus drivers, child nutrition assistants, and instructional aides for our special education students and after school programs. Vista Unified is committed to continue to provide essential transportation services to our students this year, and we need bus driver candidates and transportation assistants to do so. Instructional assistants, or paraprofessionals, work directly with students who receive special education services and play an invaluable role in providing instructional, physical, and even medical support for students. Our child nutrition assistants ensure our students receive adequate nutrition, and our after school program instructional assistants ensure our students have access to essential after school programs.
Certificated positions include education specialists, speech and language pathologists, psychologists, and social workers. These positions are essential to support our students receiving Special Education Services and social-emotional supports.
Vista Unified is working diligently and collaboratively to ensure that any staffing challenges have a minimal impact at our school sites. We are one of the largest districts in North County, and our hours are ideal for parents with students who attend schools within or around our district. Our Human Relations Department provides onboarding and professional development pathway opportunities for classified staff that support aspiring professionals working toward a degree in education or any field working with children with disabilities.
The attached link provides application access to all open positions: Employment Opportunities. If you have any questions regarding the hiring process or need support in completing an application, please call the Human Relations job hotline at (760) 726-2170, ext. 92250. Press 1 for certificated or 2 for classified.
At the regular Board Meeting of September 8, 2022, the Board of Trustees received an update on the status of transportation service for the opening of the school year. Due to a national, state, and local shortage of bus drivers, the district was required to offer modified shuttle bus services to Mission Vista High School and Madison, Rancho Minerva, and Roosevelt Middle Schools; to provide a shuttle bus for Mission Meadows Elementary School and single full route lines to Breeze Hill and Grapevine Elementary Schools; and place a pause on the services to Hannalei, Lake, Monte Vista, and THE Leadership Academy Elementary Schools.
The board report also presented information on current and forecasted staffing levels. While August to September has shown little change in the level of bus drivers available on a daily basis, the number of applicants has increased. The report also included average timelines for those who do not have a license but want to be a bus driver (12-16 weeks) and those who currently have a license and would like to work for the district (5-10 weeks). The Transportation Department will continue to work on a series of options and solutions to this labor shortfall. If you know of anyone who is interested in becoming a bus driver, please encourage them to reach out to the Human Relations Department at (760) 726-2170, ext. 92200 or at email@example.com.
The Board of Trustees and Superintendent remain firmly committed to general education transportation services for our students.
Options-Based Safety Training - Keeping Schools Safe
Providing our students with safe environments remains a top priority for Vista Unified. As we have seen all too often, the news is filled with events of danger targeted at schools. We know safety is paramount on the minds of all school families, and we are committed to being prepared for all emergencies.
Under the guidance and direction of the San Diego County Office of Education, our site administrators participated in options-based safety training this summer. The purpose of options-based training is to provide clear procedures to respond to emergencies on campus that may pose a threat to students and staff.
Over the next few months, schools will begin to conduct safety drills to respond to fire, earthquake, and intruders on campus. Each of these drills will include opportunities for teachers to speak with students about the importance of being prepared, listening to the teacher, and following instructions. At all grade levels, this will be done in a caring manner and presented to students as a teachable moment. Your support, patience, and understanding are appreciated as we prioritize emergency preparedness and student safety.
Hunger Coalition Update
Pandemic EBT (or P-EBT) is a federally funded program that provides eligible families with food benefits in addition to free or reduced-price meals at childcare or school. P-EBT benefits cards were sent to qualifying families from the California Department of Social Services and the California Department of Education.
P-EBT funds can be used similarly to CalFresh. P-EBT cards are accepted at most grocery stores, farmers' markets, and online at Amazon® or other retailers. Foods served hot or already prepared (like take-out or hot food bars) are not covered.
If you qualify for a P-EBT card, please call the P-EBT Helpline at (877) 328-9677 (Monday through Friday from 6 am to 8 pm). Be prepared to provide your child’s name, date of birth, and mailing address to complete the request. For more information on P-EBT cards, please go to https://capandemic-ebt.org/faq
Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS)
This month, our PBIS cohort one schools will begin a year-long professional learning and collaboration process to develop and implement their Tier 1 School-Wide PBIS (SW-PBIS) plans in collaboration with the San Diego County Office of Education. Each school has established an eight-person, multi-faceted team that will attend a series of three workshops, with additional coaching and implementation cycles between each workshop.
SW-PBIS creates schools where all students can act and interact effectively in order to be successful in school. When implemented with fidelity, PBIS has shown success in the following areas:
Increase prosocial behaviors
Close the achievement gap for all subgroups
Increase instructional minutes
Increase safety on all school campuses
Establish prevention and early identification systems as a way of doing business
Decrease suspensions, expulsions, and increase attendance
Parents/guardians, click here to learn more about and support PBIS at home with resources from the Center on PBIS.
Suicide Prevention Awareness Month
September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month and Suicide Prevention Week is from September 4th to the 10th. World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10th is a time when individuals and organizations join their voices to broadcast the message that everyone can play a role in suicide prevention and to remember loved ones lost to suicide.
Please join us in working together to support people in need. Here are some great resources to help spread awareness and prevention:
Matt Doyle, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Vista Unified School District