Malibu Chronicle - April/May 2014

Page 54

Community

AMPS

CRAIG FOSTER IS PRESIDENT OF ADVOCATES FOR MALIBU PUBLIC SCHOOLS (AMPS), WHICH HAS BEEN ESTABLISHED TO LEAD THE CREATION OF AN INDEPENDENT PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT IN MALIBU. MALIBU CHRONICLE HAS ASKED CRAIG TO UPDATE OUR READERS: CRAIG FOSTER

President of AMPS

Thus, our call to action: We ask every resident of Malibu to consider what roles – yes, make that plural! – he or she can play in the creation of an independent Malibu Unified School District. MC: What can people do to help? CF: ADVOCATE. We need many people speaking up for this cause – educated, informed voices talking to friends, neighbors, colleagues and even strangers about why local control is important and how it will benefit both communities. Familiarize yourself with the issue and facts. The AMPS website (www.ampsmalibu.org) is a good place to start. You can access the WestEd feasibility study from that portal. If you have questions or suggestions, call an AMPS Board member. Attend meetings and participate. Bring a friend.

INTERVIEW WITH CRAIG FOSTER, PRESIDENT OF AMPS

MC: Why create a Malibu Unified School District separate from Santa Monica? CF: Under the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD), Malibu has a little voice, and the board and district administration are often at odds with Malibu parents and residents on vital issues. If our schools are to reflect the values and vision of our community, the citizens of Malibu must work together to establish local governance through the creation of an independent Malibu School District. MC: What is AMPS’ role in this process? CF: AMPS is leading this initiative, hiring SMMUSD-approved consultants to complete a feasibility study to determine if our proposed action complies with state education criteria. Our plan not only complies, it offers significant benefits to both Santa Monica and Malibu.

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Advocates for Malibu Public Schools (AMPS) 23805 Stuart Ranch Rd. Suite 105 Malibu, CA 90265 (310) 734-2021 www.ampsmalibu.org

54 MC APRIL.MAY 2014

We are now at a critical point in our independence campaign. The next phase will be even more active and will demand a much larger cohort of involved and passionate participants.

VOLUNTEER. AMPS is already developing a number of activities that will require a group effort to mount. Your time and energy can make a big difference in our campaign. JOIN. Make it official – join AMPS and be a part of the team. The modest membership fee helps support this important campaign. GIVE. Membership fees cover only a small part of the expenses of this endeavor. We will need to tap deeper resources to succeed. Phase 1 was funded largely by major gifts from AMPS Board members. We will need additional people who care deeply about Malibu schools to make sizable financial commitments to reach our final goal. MC: Final thoughts? CF: An independent Malibu School District will enable us to transform our schools in important ways that will benefit not only our children, but the entire Malibu community. We invite you to be part of it and act today! For more information or questions please visit our website: www.ampsmalibu.org, or email us at amps@ampsmalibu.org. FOR MORE NEWS GO TO MALIBUCHRONICLE.COM