Malibu Presents Petition to Create Independent School District to County Committee
On Saturday, April 17, 2021, the City of Malibu presented its petition to create an independent Malibu Unified School District to the Los Angeles County Office of Education‘s County Committee on School District Organization (County Committee) at a preliminary public hearing.
“The City of Malibu is encouraged by the overwhelming support for an independent Malibu Unified School District,” said Malibu Mayor Mikke Pierson. “It’s time for Malibu residents to have local control over their schools, and the hearing was the first of many steps. One of the next steps is to work with County officials to help both parties settle what is fair and equitable.”
More than 300 people attended the hearing and heard passionate testimony from both communities. Most notably, virtually no one testified that Malibu should not have its own school district. Even the presenters from the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SM-MUSD) suggested that the parties continue to negotiate how best to accomplish school separation.
The City hopes the County Committee issues a tentative recommendation in support of the City’s petition, allowing the City to continue through the unification process. While the City does not exclude any path to unification, it is not optimistic about returning to the negotiating table given SM-MUSD’s history of negotiating in bad faith. The City renews its commitment to the legal framework that governs unification in the state and further believes that working with LACOE and its school finance expert, School Services of California, would be an ideal way to devise a separation plan that is both legal and fair.
For more information, visit the Malibu Unified School District web page at www.malibucity.org/MUSD.