Members of the Bullard High community say they are fed up with overcrowding, unsafe schools and a lack of programs for academically talented students, Fresno's police auditor says sometimes too many rounds are fired in officer-involved shootings, and opponents of a Fresno plan to privatize home trash collection file suit over the city's environmental report.
Here are the top stories of the past week, along with selected comments posted by readers at fresnobee.com.
What happened: Members of the Bullard High community collected signatures on petitions and held a town meeting, asking Fresno Unified to address the problems of overcrowding, lack of discipline, lack of Title 1 money and other issues. More than 500 people gathered Tuesday night in the Bullard cafeteria to voice frustration about promises they say the district has broken.
What it means: Superintendent Michael Hanson said he disputes the Bullard group's claims, such as overcrowding, the withholding of federal funds and the lack of programs for academically gifted students. The district, however, doesn't discount the concerns, he said.
What readers said:
"I think the Bullard Group made a tactical error in not developing a coalition of some of the other FUSD high schools and feeders. It really reeks of an elitist and isolationist band of parents who instead of working to improve standards and conditions for the kids of the district and entire city are only interested in rigging the system for ONE school and further ONE group of kids. I personally know many Bullard parents and students and there are many really good people but some of them are used to using their influence/status to tilt the table their way so often that I'm afraid that they miss the point. The school has to come up with ways to "recruit" good students and this meeting was a big blow to that. Stop wining and start working with other schools and the district to help make the school better."
"Any Bullard High parent that wants their child to receive a top notch GATE/AP education, with access to the the top universities, can simply enroll their child at Edison High. Many already do -- an interesting question is whether those Bullard area parents with kids at Edison are supporting this movement by their neighbors whose kids don't work as hard as theirs to get for free what they have sacrificed for."
"So, let's get this straight. The Bullard parents and community stand up for their children and their school, and the rest of this miserable city criticizes them as racists and elitists and refers to their children as snowflakes? Brilliant. I understand the Bullard envy -- it has been the standard bearer for decades. It's a sad commentary that as a city, we've resorted to the 'misery loves company' approach. Of course, it's well known that people with low self esteem delight in the misfortune of others. It's call schadenfreude. I learned that at Bullard."
What happened: Some Fresno police officers may fire their weapons too many times during officer-involved shootings, according to the city's new police auditor. Rick Rasmussen, director of the Office of Independent Review, also wrote in his first quarterly report that the investigative skill of Internal Affairs officials digging into officer-involved shootings "is top notch."
What it means: Police Chief Jerry Dyer said the department is training harder to eliminate unnecessary shots. Rasmussen produced a useful report, Dyer said: "I can assure you we'll look at every recommendation and implement them as best we can."
Catching Up is compiled by Bee editors. Go to fresnobee.com/catchingup/ to comment or learn more about these stories.