Thursday, June 8, 2023

CUSD Update: Loss of CHS Teacher, 4×4 Bell Schedule for CHS, and Sports Report

CUSD Board Meeting: District Mourns Loss of CHS Teacher, Hears Community Concerns on the 4x4 Bell Schedule for CHS, and Shares School Sports Report

The Governing Board met at District Offices for the regularly scheduled board meeting on March 11.

The Governing Board of the Coronado Unified School District met at District Offices on Thursday, March 11th, for their regularly scheduled board meeting.

Sadly, the meeting opened on a somber note to commemorate the contributions of beloved Coronado High School Teacher, Ray Yannaccone, who lost his battle with cancer last month. Mr. Yannaccone, or, Mr. ‘Y’ as he was affectionately dubbed by students, taught English and Musical Theatre at the Coronado School of Arts (CoSA) during his 22 years with CUSD.

“Mr. Y was an inspiring teacher in the classroom, and directing students on stage in the theater,” said Associated Student Body President Kelli Morris. “He was a safe space for many, and always made his students feel heard and valued. Mr. Y will always be remembered for his compassion and devotion to CHS students.”

When it comes to health and safety of teachers, Karl Mueller, Superintendent for CUSD, shared that the district is working hard to assist teachers and employees with access to COVID vaccinations.

“As a district, we made sure that our substitute teachers, our coaches, our part-time employees, and all full-time employees are included…and we have ongoing discussions with Sharp Coronado and the City of Coronado to ensure that the second Pfizer vaccination shot will be administered to all staff prior to spring break,” said Mueller.

Mueller shared that many teachers and employees were securing COVID vaccinations.

Many students sent in emails expressing trepidation regarding the new 4×4 bell schedule set to launch at CHS in the fall. The new schedule, according to previous statements from Dr. Megan Battle, CUSD Director of Learning, was created to expand college and career readiness, increase equitable access to opportunities, allow for remediation and acceleration, and–perhaps, most importantly–help students to more readily access A-G requirements for UC admissions.

Many students, as well as a teacher, expressed worries over increased homework load, the inability for students to access AP tests at the appropriate time, and concerns over accelerated learning. The board members agreed to address questions about the new schedule and add as an agenda item for a future meeting.

Deputy District Superintendent Donnie Salamanca presented a budget update, which actually placed CUSD in a better financial position than expected, but questions remained about programs that were operating at a deficit, such as the Brian Bent Memorial Aquatics Complex.

Dr. Megan Battle shared that in April the district will revisit the probability of bringing kids on campus for longer periods of times, and Mueller addressed community interest about the fall.

“Right now, [for the fall], we are committed to returning all students to campus for five days of instruction,” said Mueller. “Obviously, there are some things that are beyond our control. But if we are continue trending in the direction we are trending, with coronavirus, with our vaccination schedule, we are optimistic… our goal is to try to return to ‘normal’ for our first day of instruction next year.”

Robin Nixon, Athletic Director from Coronado High School, shared which CIF sports will be in session, which include baseball, lacrosse, soccer, softball, track, cross country, swim, golf and tennis. She shared that COVID testing was required for football and water polo, as well as indoor sports, as mandated by the state.

Robin Nixon said that many sports were already in session or set to resume, with many requiring COVID testing.

Superintendent Mueller shared that many CUSD teachers have expressed interest in teaching summer school, and an “interest survey” was going to be sent out soon to parents and students. Parents and students are urged to check their emails regarding district updates.


Christine Van Tuyl
Christine Van Tuyl
Christine was born and raised in Texas, but moved to Coronado with her family as a teen in 1993. Although initially horrified by surfers, flannels and skateboards, she ultimately grew to love all things So-Cal. A graduate of UCSD, Christine got her first writing job on the KUSI ten o’clock news while simultaneously juggling a reporter position at the San Diego Community News Group. She worked as a public relations professional, a book editor, real estate professional, and a freelance writer before eventually succumbing to motherhood in 2008.A decade later, Christine resurfaced to start the Island Girl Blog, a Coronado lifestyle blog. In addition, she writes a monthly page for Crown City Magazine. Christine loves hanging out with her husband, Ian, and their two spirited daughters, Holland and Marley, who attend Village Elementary and Coronado Middle School. When she’s not working, you’ll find her practicing yoga, spilling coffee at school drop off, meeting friends for sushi, or sailing the Bay with her family and English Bulldog, Moshi. Have news to share? Send tips, story ideas or letters to the editor to: [email protected]