Dear Los Banos Unified School District (LBUSD), I hope that you are enjoying the remaining days of summer vacation. I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to read this message and staying abreast of all the exciting things happening in the district.

The Los Banos Teachers Association (LBTA) does an excellent job in being involved with the community. In April, LBTA gave out hundreds of new and used books at the Los Banos Spring Street Faire. Students of all ages were able to pick out books that were donated by LBUSD teachers, staff members and multiple libraries. LBTA will be at the Fall Street Faire.

The beginning of the 2023-2024 school year is rapidly approaching, and a lot has transpired since June 2023. Maintenance and custodial workers have been getting sites ready for the new school year, while the human resources department has been busy filling the vacancies that are needed for the first day of school. To date, they have filled 45 certificated and 17 classified positions.

At the principal ranks, Laura Brady has been named principal of the transitional kindergarten center. Her replacement at Lorena Falasco is Gregory Hicks.

With the departure of Renee Leonard, Alberto Felix will be assuming the role of principal at Los Banos Elementary. We are also excited to welcome David Taylor as our new transportation supervisor.

Additionally, Andrew Nguyen was hired as the director of health services, replacing Karina Tovar who left us in September 2022. The position has been vacant since that time with her duties being assumed by Interim District Administrator Alberto Verduzco.

We are also welcoming several new assistant principals for the 2023-2024 school year: Theron Garst at Los Banos Elementary, Kevin Coleman at Grasslands Elementary, Jennifer Montemurro at Los Banos Junior High, Claudine Gutierrez at Creekside Junior High and Megan Punt and Angela McGraw at Los Banos High School.

Lastly, our newest learning directors are Erica Franco at Los Banos Junior High School and Pamela Snively at Los Banos High School.

In March of 2018, Los Banos Unified School District worked with the community to identify critical facility needs that required attention. The LBUSD Board of Education took action to place a local school bond that authorized local funding to repair and upgrade LBUSD school facilities.

Measure X went to voters on June 6, 2018, and passed by nearly 71 percent! Since that time, the district has made great progress in keeping its pledge to the community as to how the bond money would be spent.

In addition to the construction of Grasslands Elementary, we have added a new science wing at Pacheco High School, a much-needed parking lot for Henry Miller Elementary and the facilities, operations, and transportation departments, as well as Phase I of the Loftin Stadium remodel, which included team rooms, ticket booths, and concession areas.

These projects have no financial impact on the general fund budget.

In other news, we continue to make progress on our strategic planning process. In June, the strategic planning process was in full swing as we engaged in productive discussions with the Board to gather their insights regarding the future of LBUSD.

Once completed, our strategic plan will establish our mission, vision, core values, and directions, shaping the foundation for our endeavors for many years to come. The plan is expected to be finalized in the fall, paving the way for its implementation.

Similarly, the district’s logo is a big part of our brand or identity. The logo updating process will be developed carefully with full engagement of our educational partners. We are still looking for individuals who would like to assist in the district logo redesign process.

I am also pleased to announce that I plan to start a Superintendents’ Leadership Cohort in January 2024. The goal is to build internal capacity and increase the number of individuals within the district that are eligible to apply for administrative positions that become vacant in LBUSD.

My goal for the 2023-2024 school year is to visit a classroom in the district every day I am in office. I am looking forward to seeing our students and teachers in action and the amazing things that happen in our school district!

Children were excited to choose a free book at the downtown street faire thanks to the Los Banos Teachers’ Association.
Dr. Mark Marshall

Superintendent, Los Banos School District