The closing of VISTA has left about 70 students out in the cold in the second half of September. They do have some options, however.
SUSD’s Mark Hagemann said the district has openings in every one of its high school programs and is committed to getting former VISTA students into new placements by Monday. Kathy Focacci of the San Joaquin County Office of Education said county programs can move just as quickly. So did Matt George of Humphreys College’s Academy of Business, Law and Education.
An official for Aspire Public Schools says that organization has long waiting lists. A Lincoln Unified spokesperson said there’s a “small” chance Lincoln High could enroll some VISTA seniors.
VISTA has scheduled a high school enrollment fair for students Thursday evening. Representatives from SUSD, the county office and ABLE are expected to be on hand.
Two other notes:
*Two VISTA teachers, Obed Galang and Marlene Mallari, are in the United States on work visas from the Philippines. David Thoming of New Jerusalem School District — which authorized VISTA’s charter — said his district is committed to hiring Galang and Mallari so they are able to remain in the U.S.
*VISTA took delivery on 100 laptop computers Monday. Members of the VISTA board said the computers were never removed from their boxes and that the school will be able to return them. It’s a little less clear whether VISTA will be able to return its Education 2020 online curriculum to its Oregon-based manufacturer. Jeff Tilton, VISTA’s principal, formerly was a sales associate for Education 2020. UPDATE: Tilton by email said tonight that he was not compensated by Education 2020 for bringing the curriculum to VISTA.