Blogging Bayport Alameda

June 11, 2018

Out of options

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:01 am

Now that school is out, we should totally talk about school related issues.  And of course, on deck, is the Lum Elementary situation.  It appears the District has been moving pretty quickly in getting information about the various options and holding community meetings around the topic.

Now, the District is seeking a policy decision from the School Board on what to do.

Here are clips of the relevant slides including two options: repair and replace, the cost, and how to fund the cost.

Spoiler: the only way to fund either option is to halt all other capital improvements at other schools from bond measure money.  I’m pretty sure that’s not going to fly with every other school community in Alameda.

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Clearly, given that the repair cost is more expensive then just replacing the facility with a brand new one, Option 1 is not actually an option.  The suggestion to convert Wood into a K-8 might be an interesting conversation, but if there is enough capacity at close schools (like Franklin) it’s not clear if it’s worth displacing middle school students at Wood to accommodate an elementary school program.  Also, it’s contingent on the discussion around consolidation of the high schools going successfully.  Based on some preliminary community input on social media, while there is support, it’s going to be a really hard sell.


  1. We should strongly consider the grand domino reshuffle. onsolidate high schools, make Encinal the west end middle school, “move” and expand Franklin to the Wood campus.

    Comment by BMac — June 11, 2018 @ 7:08 am

    • Not sure how this address the elementary school population issue unless you mean turning Wood into a K-8. The middle school facility would need extensive remodel for younger students and there are accessibility issues that would need to be addressed.

      Comment by Mike McMahon — June 11, 2018 @ 12:38 pm

      • What elementary school population issue? After shutting down Lum, many K-5 schools in AUSD still are not at capacity. I agree that moving Franklin to the Wood site wouldn’t be cheap or easy. I’m down with BMac’s plan, and scraping Wood to build a model, 21st century school for the Lum and Franklin populations.

        Comment by Ron Parodi — June 11, 2018 @ 9:42 pm

      • Wood would be able to handle a large elementary population, say double what Franklin currently does. This means our elementary capacity would be at least a couple hundred more than what we currently have, even if we close Franklin. Encinal would be able to more than handle the combined Wood + Jr. Jet population.

        Comment by BMac — June 12, 2018 @ 10:39 am

  2. Option 3. (Unstated)

    Sell land for housing development. Use money to expand Wood keeping accessibility for Lum families. Cost=zero

    Option 4: (also Unstated) seek State and Federal funds to rebuild/relocate Lum school (hello Rob Bonta and Congresswoman Lee). Cost=zero

    Option 5: (implicit): hold a series of meetings, form citizen committees, eventually change school board and superintendent, talk, talk, talk, and finally when the original displaced Lum students graduate from high school, then do something when cost to rebuild doubles from original estimate.

    Comment by Nowyouknow — June 11, 2018 @ 7:25 am

    • Your Option 3 always made sense to me. Sell the valuable asset that is not valuable as a school property. They will probably stall until the sale will be less unpopular with parents. Maybe they could give teachers first choice on affordable housing there too.

      Comment by michonnekatana — June 12, 2018 @ 11:43 pm

  3. Never ending school siphoning of property tax payers.

    Comment by Stormy Mueller — June 11, 2018 @ 9:42 am

  4. BMac for school board.

    Comment by Angela — June 11, 2018 @ 1:26 pm

  5. Sounds like Lum is a teardown. This is true of many bay area schools of this vintage. Earthquaking was not well understood when built. It also seems to be an awkward placement of an elementary school on a main drag with traffic heading to beach and shopping. It’s not like wee ones walk to school on their own – they get chauffered. And the west side could use its own middle school with all the new housing there.

    Comment by Bette — July 1, 2018 @ 9:17 am

    • West End.

      Comment by JohnP.TrumpisnotmyPresident. — July 2, 2018 @ 6:22 am

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