Kim Thompson honored
A surprise celebration on Friday for Kim Thompson, principal of Graham Middle School, showed an outpouring of community support. Over 150 teachers, parents, students and community leaders expressed thanks to Thompson, who has been a teacher in the Mountain View Whisman School District for 10 years and principal at Graham for eight.
Steve Chesley led the evening of moving, and often humorous, tributes. Students spoke about how Thompson helped shaped their characters, "even when they didn't deserve it." Others spoke of how she taught them how to discover their potential and excel in school. Teachers acknowledged her personal mentoring and legacy of building an award-winning school, with a focus on high academics, STEM, fine arts, and extracurricular activities for all. Project Cornerstone parents admired her strong integration of values and ethics into the school environment. A volunteer described a gang-free school, one where almost no student is expelled and almost all advance on to high school -- a school with active involvement of parents, one with volunteer scientists and mentors, and one where students greet you with a "hello" when you walk down the halls.
Among the large turnout of Latino ELAC parents, many spoke emotionally about the woman who "showed us the best in a principal." They valued their years of workshops where they learned to be leaders and advocates for their children. Countless community members contributed to a memory book, filled with letters and photos. A Mountain View police school resource officer wrote, "I truly believe that one of the many reasons why you were so successful at Graham was simply how much you loved the students. This could also be said for the way you treated your faculty members. All of the students knew they were loved (even when they were in trouble), and knew that you genuinely cared about them, and wanted the absolute best for them."
The evening concluded with tears and hugs, given to a dedicated and visionary educator who has "made a difference on a grander scale."
Marilyn Winkleby, former Graham parent and volunteer
Joey Ordonez, Graham & community engagement facilitator
Measure V "amendment"
The League of Women Voters of Los Altos-Mountain View spent the last year studying rent control and programs for just cause for eviction in California in order to understand implementation of the Mountain View charter amendment. Our findings showed that rent stabilization and programs for just cause for eviction in California that are fair and reasonable to landlords and tenants are beneficial to the community.
The league finds that the community benefits when:
* People have stable housing and can afford to live near their work
* Businesses have access to workers of all skill and socioeconomic levels
* Rent stabilization is cost neutral to the city. (A fee paid by landlords covers the costs.)
The league supports the rent stabilization and just cause provisions in Measure V and is concerned with the efforts to "amend" Measure V. The proposed "amendment" changes the vacancy rate trigger for turning off rent stabilization to a vacancy rate above 3 percent instead of the 5 percent used in Measure V. For the last decade, the vacancy rate has consistently been above 3 percent and typically in the 4 percent range. The change in the vacancy rate would effectively repeal Measure V/rent stabilization.
Although some of the tweaks in the petition may have some validity, Measure V would be totally repealed by the lower 3 percent vacancy rate.
The LWV urges: Don't sign the petition to put the "amendment" on the ballot.
Housing committee co-chair
LWV of the Los Altos/Mountain View area