Loleta Elementary School Board to discuss bullying and discipline policies

Mary Bullwinkel

Beacon Correspondent

The Loleta Elementary School Board will be asked next week to implement new policies to address the issues of bullying and discipline.

Since earlier this year, the Loleta Local Organizing Committee and Loleta Elementary School staff has been studying these issues. Potential options to make positive changes will be presented and discussed at the Nov. 14 school board meeting.

According to Helen L'Annunziata, senior planner for the Natural Resources Services Division of Redwood Community Action Agency, "The LOC has been working with the school for the past six months, exploring and researching discipline policies that would help the school with the issue of bullying and the inconsistent discipline measures in place now." L'Annunziata is the liaison between the LOC and the St. Joseph Health Foundation's Community Building Initiative, which is sponsoring the community improvement efforts in Loleta.

Several community members are planning to speak at next week's school board meeting. "We are a group of parents, residents, and staff who joined the LOC in response to many concerns we heard about the Loleta School," said Marcelina Mejia de Castillo.

Evangelina Herrera Martinez, a parent with children at Loleta Elementary School said, "This school is very special for being diverse, small and unique and it has the potential to be an excellent school, but right now not all of the student are treated equally. We know it can be better," she continued, "and we want to work with the school to change these policies."

According to L'Annunziata, the recommendations to be considered have been developed to implement policies that are unique to address the issues at Loleta Elementary School.

Photos by Mary Bullwinkel/Beacon

1. Loleta Local Organizing Committee members were given a presentation on discipline policies research findings by community leaders Celia Campos (left) and Ed Ramos (center).

2. Kelley Kyle leads a discussion with Aileen Meyers, Ed Ramos and Marcelina Mejia de Castillo (back to camera) about educational improvement opportunities in Loleta.