By Mary O’KEEFE
The Crescenta Valley Town Council will host Congressman Adam Schiff and Glendale Unified School District Superintendent Dick Sheehan tonight, Thursday, March 20 at 7 p.m. in the La Crescenta Library community room.
Schiff will begin the meeting with a special presentation of the Congressional Badge of Bravery to Dep. Tai Plunkett from the Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station.
On Nov. 21, 2012, while off duty, Plunkett was refueling his vehicle at a Burbank gas station when he noticed a woman and man arguing. There were two young children present. Suddenly the man began attacking the woman with a knife. The children were trying to intervene. Plunkett, unarmed at the time, realized he did not have time to call for assistance. He approached the suspect and identified himself as an LASD deputy. The suspect stopped briefly then continued his attack. Plunkett kicked the suspect several times causing him to stop the attack.
Plunkett attempted to restrain the suspect who continued to resist. A Good Samaritan and another off-duty deputy realized there was a problem and assisted. The suspect was turned over to the Burbank police. The woman, who suffered over 20 stab wounds and cuts, was transported to a local hospital and made a full recovery, according to an LAPD statement.
A representative for Sen. Barbara Boxer and CV Station’s Capt. Bill Song will be present when Schiff presents the Congressional Badge of Bravery to Plunkett.
Congress passed the Law Enforcement Congressional Badge of Bravery Act of 2008. The act established an award to “honor exceptional acts of bravery in the line of duty by federal, state, and local law enforcement officers. The medals are awarded annually by the U.S. Attorney General and are presented by the recipients’ Congressional representatives,” according to the Badge of Bravery website.
Congressman Schiff will then take the podium to discuss issues that are important to Crescenta Valley residents. He will also take questions from the audience.
Sheehan will share a PowerPoint presentation on “What is Right About GUSD,” a program the district has been sharing with audiences over the year.
“We are celebrating what is right about our district,” Sheehan said.
He will discuss the district’s programs including dual immersion.
“It has come to my attention that many are unfamiliar with [this program],” he said.
The Foreign Language Academies of Glendale (FLAG) dual immersion program offers foreign languages in several schools. Italian, French, German, Armenian, Japanese, Spanish and Korean are offered. At present in the Crescenta Valley, Monte Vista Elementary School offers a Korean dual language program.
“We will also [highlight] the success of La Crescenta schools and end with an update on the territorial transfer,” Sheehan said.
The territorial transfer is the transfer of the western area of La Cañada Flintridge known as Sagebrush from the GUSD regional schools to the La Cañada Unified Schools. The transfer will heavily affect Mountain Avenue Elementary School; however, the effect will be felt at Rosemont Middle School and CV High School as well.
There will be a question and answer period with Superintendent Sheehan.
This will also be the first CVTC meeting since the middle school crossing guard decision by the Los Angeles board of supervisors earlier this month.
Prior to the decision, L.A. County would provide funding for crossing guards at elementary schools only. Parents, school staff and CVTC fought for a crossing guard at Rosemont Middle School. Supervisor Michael Antonovich listened to their concerns and agreed to a pilot program at the middle school. The presence of a crossing guard made a difference not only for the safety of pedestrians but also eased traffic congestion in the area. The same group of concerned citizens went back to the supervisor and proposed middle school crossing guards be included in the budget at schools that request them. The addition was passed.
Several local residents, including many students from Rosemont, sent letters to Antonovich stating their concern and urging his approval of the proposal.
“The supervisor sent a letter thanking the students for their involvement,” said Robbyn Battles, CVTC president.
In it he stated that they proved that if they wanted something done and put an effort into it “you can change lives forever.”
Having Schiff and Sheehan speak to the CVTC and the audience is a new direction for the meeting that was started by Battles. This is her first term as president and Battles said she wanted to reach out to those who make decisions that affect CV residents every day and give community members a chance to ask questions.
At last month’s meeting, a panel discussion included representatives from the California Highway Patrol, CV Sheriff’s, CV Water District and the CV Chamber of Commerce.