School Board Votes on Derby Field Project

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Tuesday October 23, 2007

The Berkeley school board will vote Wednesday whether to accept the completion of the Derby Field project Wednesday.  

The Berkeley High field hockey team practiced on the grass Monday afternoon, the first use of the new field. The field will be used by Berkeley High and Longfellow Middle School athletic teams. B-Tech (Berkeley Technology Academy) will also use it for physical education. 

The field will have one unlocked pedestrian gate, and community members can use the site for running or throwing a frisbee, said district spokesperson Mark Coplan. 

“Any kind of organized activity will require a permit from the school district,” he said. “Also, dogs are not allowed on the field. It will have the same rules that are applicable to all the other school fields.” 


Online grades and attendance 

The school board will discuss a plan to allow families of students at Berkeley High, B-Tech, King, Willard and Longfellow middle schools to view grades and attendance online. 

The district’s technology department is currently working with the high school and middle schools to make the information available online. 

The proposed plan states that the new technology will display the attendance and reporting period grade data for each student that is stored in the district’s Student Information System, thus making the data current and compatible with other reporting systems.  

It will also provide teachers a place to update or post news, calendars, assignments, tests and classroom assignments. 

The website, which school district spokesperson Mark Coplan said could start this school year, will cost Berkeley High School $3,636. 


West Campus 

The board will discuss plans to move the district’s administrative office from the old City Hall building (recently re-named as the Maudelle Shirek building) at 2134 Martin Luther King Jr. Way to the West Campus by 2009. 

The staff will be moved to two pre-constructed modular buildings on the west side of the current parking lot at the West Campus. 

The proposed plan specifies six portables on the east side of the parking lot, use of the east side of the gymnasium for storage and two parking lots for staff. 

However, the maintenance department and the nutritional services warehouse will remain at the current site until appropriate locations can be found for them. There is also no proposed space for a board meeting room. 

Once a permanent structure has been built to house the administrative staff, the modular buildings will be used for child care.