The Pleasanton Unified School District (PUSD) has received a $456,000 grant from the state to identify and give extra help to underperforming students who are not covered by other state-funded programs. The added specialists will spend their time working closely with the students.

District staff explained the program to the PUSD school board at its Feb. 12 meeting.

The grant, one-time money from the State Department of Education, must be spent between March 2019 and November 2021.

Students to be served come from grades 3 to 8, and grade 11. Staff estimates that more than 400 students will benefit from the funding.

Superintendent David Haglund said that the district wants to “fortify existing programs, and make them more robust,” not add something that is entirely new.

Specialists to be hired may include those working in reading and English Language support.

On another item, the board approved reappointing five members of the Citizens Bond Oversight Committee. The reappointed members are Patricia Kohnen, Samantha Webb Kading, Keith Lam, Yi Huang, and Steve Zevanove.

Another member, Jill Buck, who has represented the business community, did not seek reappointment.

Deputy Superintendent of Financial Services Micaela Ochoa thanked Buck for her service, and said the district will recruit her replacement, and also an additional appointee.

By law, a bond oversight committee is required to meet only once a year, but PUSD’s committee has met seven times. “We had great feedback and dialogue with them,” said Ochoa.

In a related matter, the district announced in a news release Feb. 12 that the I1 bond measure was audited for the first time. The “no finding” evaluation means that the public can rely on the information in the financial books for the fiscal year that ended on June 30, 2018.

The auditors, from the firm of Cossolias, Wilson, Dominguez and Leavitt, rendered an unmodified opinion for both the bond audit and the district books, the highest opinion possible.

The board also established a budget subcommittee of the board to review and provide policy direction about financial planning for the district. The board unanimously chose trustees Mark Miller and Joan Laursen as members, and board Vice-president Steve Maher as alternate.

After the board and subcommittee discuss bylaws, the subcommittee will meet in April and May to examine the budget that the board will adopt in June for the next fiscal year.