RSF School District rethinks solar timeline

RANCHO SANTA FE — The topic of utilizing solar for the Rancho Santa Fe School District has been on the agenda previously and discussed at length. Superintendent Lindy Delaney has done much of the footwork in terms of research.

Her recent recommendation at the last monthly school board meeting was to rethink the solar process timeframe. Delaney said that because of the timing and the information that they are still working on, it was suggested that this topic be delayed until the summer months.

The board expressed past apprehensions about blacktop solar panels on the campus. An option which was part of previous discussion was conducting an environmental impact report (EIR) on the school’s Dacus property which currently serves as a parking lot for the teachers.

If an EIR is done on Dacus, located on El Fuego, it could provide more solar options.

“We shouldn’t rush into solar, but look into 2017 solar,” Delaney said.

Delaney wanted the board to know that her team did get some of the information that the board had requested, including diagrams and pictures.

Board member Marti Ritto mentioned how the last parent forum revealed how some parents liked the idea of having solar over the lunch tables to provide more shade for the children. Both Ritto and Delaney agreed that hearing those desires was a surprise.

Delaney assured Vice President of the board, Todd Frank, that blacktop solar panel renderings from the ground would still be done.

During the middle of the board meeting, the board of trustees and attendees had the opportunity to hear seventh grader Sofia Symon, winner of the recent speech contest redeliver her winning dialogue. The topic was on children with special needs and was entitled, “They’re just like us.”

When Symon finished, she was congratulated with applause and kudos.

During the course of the meeting, the board also unanimously approved a consulting agreement with Barbara Swovelin, a retired English teacher from Torrey Pines High School to review their sixth to eighth grade English curriculums. It was Delaney who initiated the idea.

“I think it’s in our best interest to periodically take a look and review different parts of the curriculum and how they measure up to outside of Rancho Santa Fe,” said Delaney, adding how Swovelin had more than 30 years’ experience and is a phenomenal teacher. “I called her and asked her if she would be willing to come in and take a look at our English department.”

Delaney said the advantage would be a fresh pair of eyes.

Swovelin agreed and so did the board.

Delaney shared at first Swovelin did not want to charge the school but Delaney insisted. Swovelin reduced her price to $80 per hour and the contract would not exceed $3,500.

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