So Cal education, LAUSD, the Cal States and the UCs

A faceoff between experts is on the horizon as 'Subway to the Sea' drama continues

Beverly Hills Schools

Jae C. Hong/AP

Beverly Hills High School is seen in Beverly Hills, Calif., Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2009. Metro planned on building a subway stop on Santa Monica Blvd. in Beverly Hills, but due to the presence of active fault lines and recommendations of seismologists, the proposed stop has been moved to Constellation Boulevard and Avenue of the Stars.

At a sparsely attended Beverly Hills Unified school board meeting earlier this week, a team of engineering geologists presented the first part of their findings after months of digging, drilling and trenching for active faults under the district's only public high school.

Their conclusion? There are no active earthquake faults under the Beverly Hills High School associated with the West Beverly Hills Lineament.

The extensive study has cost the school district more than $2 million thus far for work by Leighton Consulting, Inc., the Irvine-based engineering consulting firm that embarked on the multi-month investigation to determine the accuracy of information released in an October Metro report on the Westside Subway Extension.

The Metro report by a team of experts found it would be unsafe to tunnel or build a metro station along Santa Monica Boulevard — as preferred by Beverly Hills — because of the active Santa Monica fault zone below. The team concluded that a site on Constellation Boulevard, which would tunnel under Beverly Hills High School, would be safer despite crossing the West Beverly Hills Lineament, identified in the report as the northern part of the deadly and active Newport-Inglewood fault.

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Beverly Hills Unified school board votes to pull permits from 34 students

An exterior of Beverly Hills High School. Beverly Hills Unified's school board voted to pull permits from 34 fifth and eighth graders at its meeting Tuesday night (April 24, 2012).

More than 30 students in Beverly Hills Unified's fifth and eighth grades will no longer be able to attend the district's schools this fall because they do not live within its boundaries, the school board voted late Tuesday night.

On Tuesday night the board rehashed what has been, and will be, revisited annually since a decision to end the district's permit program two years ago. It unanimously voted to provide no new permits for the 2012 school year unless the student is a child of a district or city employee. And as it did last year, the board voted to pull permits at the "natural breaking points" for fifth- and eighth-graders in the district, except for the children of city and district employees.

That means 17 fifth-graders and 17 eighth-graders will soon be receiving letters telling them that they cannot attend school in Beverly Hills Unified School district this fall, and will have to find a new school if they haven't already. Parents can appeal the decision with the Los Angeles County Office of Education, which has already allowed a number of students back into the district in the past.

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