MALIBU—The city of Malibu announced on its website that a public hearing is being held on Saturday, September 18 regarding the effort to create a separate school district for Malibu. Currently, the city of Malibu and Santa Monica have a joint unified school district.
Members of the community are asked to join to help create and independent Malibu Unified School District by attending the hearing at 9 a.m. and providing comment.
The Meeting link is: https://lacoe-edu.zoom.us/j/88550713007?pwd=alVDb1JGT2pMMnNUb2FLZHduVURmUT09.
Individuals can also join the webinar by phone: 1 (669) 900 9128 and should be prepared to log on and use the “raise your hand” feature to secure time to speak.
According to a news release from the city of Malibu, on April 17, the presented its preliminary petition to separate from the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SM-MUSD) and to create an independent Malibu Unified School District (MUSD), to the Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE) Committee on School District Organization (County Committee).
The County Committee will continue the public hearing on the city of Malibu’s petition on September 18. Community members are encouraged to attend the virtual hearing and show their support for this effort to give. Live Spanish translation will be available. Residents can submit written comments or documentation in advance of the meeting by 4 p.m. on Tuesday, September 14 via email to Anna Heredia at: Heredia_Anna@lacoe.edu.
Members are encouraged to get accurate facts answers by visiting the city’s webpage: https://www.malibucity.org/MUSD. Those with questions can email MalibuUnified@malibucity.org or call 310- 456-2489, ext. 490.
On Tuesday, September 14, the Santa Monica City Council submitted a letter to the Los Angeles County Committee on School District Organization (“Committee”) asking for its members to deny Malibu’s current petition to separate from the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District given terms are not equitable for all students.
City Council requested the denial after a report crafted by Committee staff and a consultant that was published on September 2 determined that eight out of the nine criteria for separation set by the Committee have not been substantially met. That report states: “The analysis clearly illustrates that the proposed reorganization would have a substantial negative effect on the fiscal health of the remaining Santa Monica USD.”
The Santa Monica City Council reaffirms in its letter support for separation if terms are favorable to the educational advancement for all students.
“Such a denial only terminates the Malibu Petition. It does NOT preclude the communities working together to create an independent Malibu School District in a way that is fair and just to students in Santa Monica schools and that provides a robust and equal educational opportunity for both Malibu and Santa Monica students,” the letter reads.
The agenda and participation details for the virtual meeting are available at https://www.lacoe.edu/Business-Services/News-Announcements/ID/867/Public-Hearings.
During its meeting on September 14, the Santa Monica City Council considered a 13-item “supporting the denial of the City of Malibu’s October 12, 2020 petition to split the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District into two separate districts based on the substantial negative effect of the proposed reorganization on the fiscal health of the remaining Santa Monica Unified School District.”
There is currently a petition circulating and information on that can be found here.