SFUSD prepares for school year

By Ashley Loza
Kern Valley Sun

The South Fork Union School District (SFUSD) held its monthly board meeting on Thursday, August 9.

Because school had not yet started, no reports for staff, school site council or South Fork School and Community Foundation were given.

The board made a provisional appointment of Mike Morgan as a board trustee to fill the vacancy of trustee Karrie Bunting, who resigned in June. Morgan was not present but will be sworn in at a later meeting.

MOT Ron Ferris gave an update on the district’s need for a new water tank. The district has been communicating with Self-Help Enterprises, and organization that aims to help rural, low-income communities obtain safe drinking water and sewage services.

An initial estimate of the water tank replacement was intended to be covered by the $100,000 grant. However, a later estimate was closer to $300,000, a total the grant would not cover because it was specifically intended for drinking water.

Ferris said that he was looking to supplement the tank project with a Prop 1 grant, while the drinking water grant would go toward replacing four current drinking fountains that are not frost proof.

Superintendent Kim Villani announced that this school year’s theme would be “Saddle Up for Success,” and that Back to School Night would take place on Thursday, August 23, from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Villani said that Kindergarten currently has 21 students enrolled and T-K has five, and the district is still receiving applications, indicating that attendance numbers would be comfortable.

Villani also announced that the district’s new AED machine is on its way and will be placed in the gym. A second AED machine will be installed in the future with the help of Kern Valley High School student Helen Hayes’ Help a Heart project.

“We are looking forward to a positive year,” said Villani.

Board President Dale Creighton commented that he had recently spoken to Kern County First District Supervisor Mick Gleason about the sale of Onyx Farm. Creighton has mentioned in past meetings that over time, more of the land within SFUSD has been purchased by non-profit organizations, and this has deeply affected the funds SFUSD receives in local taxes.

“An awareness is helpful,” said Creighton.

SFUSD’s next meeting will be held on Thursday, September 13, at 6 p.m. at South Fork School’s Kelso Valley Campus. The public is encouraged to attend.