September 28, 2013

I like Eichs–21st Century Style. But did Steve Jobs?

Did anyone attend the ribbon-cutting of this house yesterday?  Anyone want to check out the Open House today or tomorrow?  Thanks very much to a connected reader who passed this on to us.

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Here’s a few more pictures from the house’s website.

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Now, feast your eyes on this text:

Joseph Eichler built some of his first prototype “Eichlers” just one block away (here in Sunnyvale). Steve Jobs grew up in the area and was inspired by Eichler.  Designer/Builder, John Citrigno, is a third-generation native. His great-grandfather was a general contractor that built homes in the area.  Mr. Citrigno, a classmate of Steve Job’s at Homestead High, inspired by both Eichler and Jobs, asked the question at every step of design and construction:

“What would Joseph Eichler build if he were alive today?" (given the cultural changes such as the need for more closet space and current construction materials and technology) and “How would the home look, function, and feel… if Steve Jobs were project manager in charge of construction and design”? 

The result is the home that will be unveiled tomorrow in Sunnyvale!

Somehow, we’re having trouble seeing Steve Jobs approve of all the cement in these pictures. However, if he were the project manager the house would run over budget by a factor of ten and he would leave out the off button on all the light switches.  Kind of like the interior photos on the website.

And the website left out something important: how much?  Burbed found out!

130927-21st-redfin609 W REMINGTON Dr
Sunnyvale, CA 94087
$1,298,000

4 Beds
2 Baths
1,755 Sq. Ft.
$740 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 2013
Lot Size: 7,245 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 1 day
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
Community: Sunnyvale
MLS#: 81335908
Style: Modern/High Tech
View: Mountains, Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

NEW METICULOUS STATE OF THE ART "21ST CENTURY EICHLER" UTILIZING CUTTING EDGE ENERGY EFFICIENT "GREEN BUILD" CONSTRUCTION w/ INNOVATIVE USE OF TECHNOLOGY & CUSTOM DETAILS THROUGHOUT * ONLY THE FINEST MATERIALS, FIXTURES & FINISHES INSIDE & OUT * ZERO ENERGY HOME USING SCALABLE SOLAR CELLS * STUNNING KITCHEN & BATHS, ETC * TOTALLY WIRED * THIS HOME IS ABSOLUTE PERFECTION * TOP SCHOOLS:CUMBERLAND, SUNNYVALE, FREMONT

This must be the first use in a listing, ever, of the terms “TOP SCHOOLS” and “FREMONT” High.  Steve Jobs did not go to Fremont, and Mr. Citringo, “a classmate of Steve Job’s [sic] at Homestead High” knows it.

On the left is the house that Steve Jobs chose to live in. It doesn’t look a lot like this one. The non-Eichler he grew up in, though, may be designated a historic site.

Comments (11) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:03 am






August 22, 2013

Pavers on the Driveway in Sunnyvale!

Tired of long articles that go on and on and on and ON? You’ll love today’s post and you’ll love today’s featured home even more.  Thanks very much to Burbed reader Michael Boltonestater for these superb snapshots in Sunnyvale! And we hope you enjoy them, because the house is, you guessed it, Pending!

130821-bennington-redfin1170 BENNINGTON Dr
Sunnyvale, CA 94087
$1,150,000

6 Beds
3.5 Baths
2,246 Sq. Ft.
$512 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1955
Lot Size: 0.31 Acres
On Redfin: 22 days
Status: Pending Without Release
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Community: Sunnyvale
MLS#: 81327931
Style: Contemporary
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

Spacious Home located in Sought-After Cherry Chase Area! Kitchen features Built-In Cabinetry, 4 Burner Gas Range, Dishwasher. 3 Wood Burning Fireplaces in the Living Room, Family Room & Master Bedroom. Beautiful front yard with Gazebo. Pavers on the Driveway. Separate Cottage in the Back of the House w/ 1 Bedroom & Half Bath. Great Cherry Chase Elementary.

130821-bennington-livingWant to see those three different fireplaces in the living room? Want to see them burn wood? Sorry, all we have is one fireplace with way too much Photoshop in the way. You’re going to have to figure out where they’ve managed to stash the other two. Perhaps they’re behind those sofas.

Enjoy a couple more of these delightfully dialed-up digital pix while you consider what life would be like in this home.

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And if you want to feel the cold, hard slap of reality in your face, there’s always Google Streetview.

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Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:02 am

August 8, 2013

Opportunity in Sunnyvale!

We have a prince of a property for you today. It’s in a great location, it’s not priced at a batshit insane ask like yesterday’s house, and best of all, you can review the listing in about 25 seconds.  Thanks very much to Burbed reader SB for the nomination!

130807-blair-redfin909 BLAIR Ave
Sunnyvale, CA 94087
$949,880

3 Beds
2 Baths
1,210 Sq. Ft.
$785 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1955
Lot Size: 5,900 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 6 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Attached Single Family
Community: Sunnyvale
MLS#: 81327967
Stories: 1
County: Santa Clara

Sunnyvale prime location. Rear opportunity in Sunnyvale desirable school district.

Upcoming Open Houses

Sunday, Aug 11: Open House – 11:00-2:00 pm

Can’t imagine why you’d need to go to an Open House, as the seller obviously has shared everything you need to know about this rear opportunity. However, an aerial photo does a great job demonstrating just what an opportunity awaits in the rear.

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Yes, that opportunity comes in the form of a body shop and a tire store, right on El Camino Real, the Street of Kings!  We can also check the Streetview if you wish.

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DHO! DHO! Maybe he’s a King too!

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:07 am

August 3, 2013

What should you do if your schools are overcrowded?

We know! We know! The answer is build more houses!

Fremont school officials warn of worse overcrowding if development goes ahead

130802-patterson-aerialBy Chris De Benedetti, The Argus
POSTED:   08/03/2013 12:00:00 AM PDT

FREMONT — Builders of the Patterson Ranch subdivision are expected to break ground next year, but school district officials fret that its 500 new homes will add more students than nearby schools can handle, worsening the Ardenwood neighborhood schools’ already major overcrowding problem.

"Our goal is to provide neighborhood school seats for kids, so that they can attend school close to where they live, as opposed to being shipped across town," said Fremont school superintendent James Morris. "We don’t want to tell families that their children have to go to different schools."

But that’s exactly what might happen to families who will buy homes in Patterson Ranch, where the nearest elementary schools already are overflowing. The district’s newest K-12 campus was built a quarter-century ago.

Student enrollment in the district’s 41 schools is 33,000, and steadily rising. Last year alone, Fremont Unified increased by 600 students, district officials said. That was a sharp spike from the past half decade, when enrollment grew 300 students each year. Rising enrollment can be "a good problem," Morris said, but it also poses severe challenges to North Fremont parents.

130802-patterson-classroom70% of Fremont residents, according to Friends of Coyote Hills, are against more development near Coyote Hills. That’s why all five Fremont City Council Members okayed building another 500 homes in the 100 acre area (marked in red on the map we included and the Murky News didn’t).

One thing we found interesting is the family selling the land is only being asked for $6 million for the school district, while it will cost $22 million to build another school for the new homes.  This sounds like a great deal, as long as you’re not a) the Fremont School District or b) living in Fremont (unless your name is Patterson).

Like they said, “a good problem.” Can’t wait for the overbidding!

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:09 am

May 26, 2013

UPDATED: A Bay Area School Ranking Mysteriously Heavy on the East Bay

Now how did this happen?  ZipRealty has produced a school ranking report that justifies buyers staying in its own East Bay backyard. A number of news sites ran completely uncritical parroting of this news release.  Let’s take a closer look to find out exactly how this happened, because there’s a reason there’s a Real Bay Area and the East Bay will never be part of it.

See updates below.

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Top Schools and Affordable Homes: East Bay Dominates ZipRealty’s List of Best Places to Live for Families

San Ramon Valley, Sunol Glen and Piedmont schools top the list.

EMERYVILLE, Calif., May 16, 2013 – ZipRealty, Inc. (http://www.ziprealty.com) (NASDAQ: ZIPR), the leading online residential real estate brokerage and technology provider, has released its first annual ranking of the Best Places for Families to Live: Top School Districts with Most Affordable Housing in the Bay Area. The public school rankings were compiled by factoring each school district’s School Score on ZipRealty.com with median price per square foot in that district. To be considered, at least 10 home sales must have closed in that school district over the course of 2012.

"We all know lots of factors – not just price per square foot – go into determining home values," says ZipRealty CEO and President Lanny Baker. "Among the most important of these factors for many families today is the quality of local schools in relation to the price of their local real estate. In our ongoing effort to help home buyers make important decisions, we are thrilled to bring these two sets of data together."

ZipRealty’s proprietary School Score ratings measure the performance of each school district, including elementary, middle and high schools on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest. ZipRealty calculates School Score ratings based on test-score data as well as student/teacher ratios, says Jamie Wilson, Senior Vice President of Technology.

130525-zipr-supermodelNotice that dateline? Emeryville. You think a realty portal located in a region with an inferiority complex is going to play fair with school rankings when up against the Real Bay Area? Ha. You can see how this is shaping up with the name of that list: “Best Places for Families to Live: Top School Districts with Most Affordable Housing in the Bay Area.”

Now if you’ve been reading Burbed for more than a couple of weeks, you already know that “Top School Districts” and “Most Affordable Housing in the Bay Area” are Two of Those Things That Don’t Go Together. It’s kind of like finding America’s Top Supermodels Who Live In Trailer Parks.  Only the supermodels are probably easier to locate because there’s less overbidding.

But it was the Top 10 on this list that made us write in to ZipRealty to ask just how the heck this list came to be.  Have a look:

  1. San Ramon Valley Unified: School Score 9.1/Median Price per SF $304
  2. Sunol Glen Unified: School Score 9.3/Median Price per SF $356
  3. Piedmont Unified: School Score 9.5/Median Price per SF $539
  4. Palo Alto Unified: School Score 9.2/Median Price per SF $885
  5. Castro Valley Unified: School Score 8/Median Price per SF $265
  6. Dublin Unified: School Score 8.4/Median Price per SF $265
  7. Pleasanton Unified: School Score 8.6/Median Price per SF $332
  8. Albany Unified: School Score 8.6/Median Price per SF $419
  9. Benicia Unified: School Score 7.8/Median Price per SF $181
  10. Martinez Unified: School Score 7.8/Median Price per SF $185

Okay, what the heck? Not only is every single school district on this list but one on the East side of the Bay, every single one is also single.  Where the hell are the non-unified school districts?  And look who’s sticking out like a sore thumb on this list. Yes, everyone’s favorite Palo Alto, sailing in at a Most Affordable Housing Price of $885 a square foot (which is too low because they calculated it more than a week ago).

Needless to say, that Most Affordable Housing figure made us write to ZipRealty’s media contact and ask just how this list was ranked.  Their answer is they put all the 9s in one bucket, then ranked the per square foot prices within the rank, then did the same for the 8s, the 7s, etc.  The school score itself was calculated based on “test-score data as well as student/teacher ratios.”  So Palo Alto and its sky-high price per foot represented the “worst” or Least Affordable of the Most Affordable of the 9s category, which had all of four school districts in it.

We were also sent the full list of 70 school districts, and there actually were some non-unified organizations therein. The highest scoring non-unified district was Los Gatos-Saratoga High School District, with an 8.3 (and a Most Affordable Housing Price of $601 a foot, which then pushed it below the Tamalpais and Fremont Union HSDs, which scored lower but were much more Most Affordable, reinforcing what we said above about those supermodels).

130525-zipr-overcrowdedComparing a high school district (grades 9-12) to a unified district (grades K-12) is batshit insane pretty silly, though.  Elementary schools have lower student-teacher ratios because, and stop us if this concept seems a little too technical, but State Law mandates smaller student-teacher ratios for elementary classes.  Therefore a Unified district would score more highly, benefitting both from that smaller student-teacher ratio and the resulting higher school test scores than a district that only has high schools.  You know, because high schools have… larger classes… and more students in the school from more diverse backgrounds than elementary schools.

Talk about a stacked deck: Alameda County has no high school districts at all, only unified districts.  Same with Solano County.  And you know else how they shuffled the cards funny?  Where the HELL is Cupertino Union School District?  You may have heard of them, they’re the one that scores 998 on the danged STAR tests from a couple of their elementary schools. But they’re nowhere to be found on the list.  And that’s rather interesting, because we looked up a house in the district on ZipRealty, just to find out CUSD’s ranking.

It’s 9.4, which means it beats every other district on the list except Piedmont (which got a whopping 9.5, or 10.2 on the list of 70 we were sent, which makes us wonder about their copyediting). Yet for some reason there’s no mention of Cupertino at all. Maybe it’s that Most Affordable Housing Price of $750 a foot – except that’s still less than Palo Alto.

130525-zipr-unfairfightPerhaps they only wanted to include school districts that had high schools? Maybe, but that doesn’t explain the presence of two (yes two out of 70) elementary school districts on the list (Howell Mountain and Pope Valley, both toward the bottom).  How many of the 70 were unified school districts? 53. And 14 high school (only) districts.

Sorry, that’s whacked, comparing unified districts with high school only.  We can run similarly helpful lists, showing East Bay city values jumping by huge margins… and forgetting to mention that they utterly imploded after 2006.  Oh wait, that’s what realtards do every time they tell you that NOW IS ALWAYS THE TIME TO BUY.

We’ve helpfully pulled out all the high school districts from the ZipRealty list, to get a better idea of how they rank against each other, since we don’t see the value in comparing apples with horse apples.  The two numbers after each high school district are the price per square foot, and the ZipRealty School Score. 

Updated 4:30 PM: The number in parenthesis in front is the rank amid all those unified districts. And we’ve separated them into their respective school score buckets, which is how the entire list was ranked (first digit of score, followed by ranking price per foot from least to most).

(11) TAMALPAIS UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $486  8.1
(12) FREMONT UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $545  8
(13) LOS GATOS-SARATOGA JOINT UHSD  $601  8.3

(17) WEST SONOMA COUNTY UNION HSD  $255  7
(19) ACALANES UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $307  7.6
(24) SAN MATEO UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $474  7
(25) MOUNTAIN VIEW-LOS ALTOS UNION HSD  $626  7.6

(27) LIBERTY UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $124  6
(32) SAN RAFAEL CITY HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $338  6.4
(36) CAMPBELL UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $408  6
(38) SEQUOIA UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $515.5  6.8

(45) SAN BENITO HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $153  5.5
(52) EAST SIDE UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $272  5.7
(54) JEFFERSON UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT  $344  5.8

Jefferson was 54th out of 70 districts, which means it still managed to beat out 14 unifieds despite the structural handicap of not having any K-8 students.

Update 4:30: Just for giggles, let’s take a look at the bottom 10 schools on their list. East Bay in yellow, and the two WTF elementaries in green (both in Napa County).

61. HAYWARD UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT  $192  4.2
62. HOWELL MOUNTAIN ELEMENTARY SD  $201  4.7
63. OAKLAND UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT  $210  4.9
64. SAN LORENZO UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT  $211  4.8
65. SAN LEANDRO UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT  $218  4.6

66. PAJARO VALLEY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT  $247 4
67. SONOMA VALLEY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT  $269.5 4.4
68. CALISTOGA JOINT UNIFIED SD  $405  4.7
69. POPE VALLEY UNION ELEMENTARY SD  $55  3.8
70. EMERY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT  $270  3.6

No RBA here!

130525-zipr-4pinocchios

We rank this press release 4 Pinocchios and 5 Lereahs

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And seriously, shame on Yahoo Finance and HuffPo Parents for not doing the slightest bit of due diligence on it. Do we have to do everything?

Update 4:30 PM: We’ve asked ZipRealty to explain their mooshing together unified and high school districts, as well as the two elementaries in their list. We will run any response of theirs in full.

Comments (15) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:03 am

March 8, 2013

Super Fun site in Mountain View, Perfect for entertaining!

Let’s finish out the week with a double dose of Mountain View Bubble 4.0: this house is a floor wax and a dessert topping. Today’s featured property was brought to you courtesy of Burbed reader bublidoo.  Thanks very much for a listing so aerated that we had to go to four different sites until we found a photo of the actual house as it exists today.  Yep, pending in a week!

130307-whisman-movoto460 N Whisman Rd
Mountain View, CA 94043
$1,149,000

Loan Payment: $4,000/mo
Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 3&1/2
Size: 1,999 sqft
$/Sqft: $574/sqft
Type: Single Family House
Year Built: 2013
Lot Size: 4,960
Days on Movoto: 9 days
Neighborhood: Whisman
MLS#: 81305578
Status: Pending – Do Not Show

Stunning newly constructed custom 4/3.5 Craftsman located on a great lot close to downtown MV, Google and easy commute routes! This gorgeous open floor plan inc. 2 master suites, one 1st floor, 3.5 designer baths, gourmet chef?s kitchen with granite counter tops & stainless steel appliances, large island w/counter seating & sliding doors to patio. Perfect for entertaining! Close to top MV schools!

130307-whisman-kitchenSo why is this house nominated for a big ol’ Burbed hug? Let’s check in with our reader whose very name implies Bubble 4.0.

wanted to point out this stunning, newly constructed custom craftsman to you. If it was near good schools or downtown Mountain View (the description claims both … but not sure about "near"), perhaps the price could be justified. But what we’re looking at here …

130307-whisman-yardis an asking price well over a million bucks for a single family house (yes, stunning, I forgot, sorry …) on a small lot within the vapor intrusion study area. And the listing comes on the heels of super fun coverage by burbed, the local TV channel, and the Mountain View Voice. One has to wonder why the agent didn’t include "Buyer to attend meetings on toxic vapors. Walk to Google Offices!"

130307-whisman-redfin-pdnsPerhaps there’s been too much super fun coverage already? In that case, no pressure … and hope you had a chuckle.

Cheers!

Oh no, bublidoo, you can never, ever, ever have too much Super Fun.  Want some more?  Let’s look at this house over on Redfin, where’ they’ve pulled down the listing and are featuring the before photo (singular) and listing copy. 

Did we mention how much we love Pending/Do Not Show?  It’s like an extra set of presents we completely missed behind the Christmas tree!  And speaking of extra presents, look what we found on Zillow.  This is like finding out we’re celebrating Chanukah too, as an added extended family holiday, with bunus presents!

130307-whisman-zillow

Wow, who knew that side of the family was so artsy?  (Or too klutzy to use a camera?)  Must be because of those good schools.

Comments (7) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:05 am

February 19, 2013

Who Wants to Be a Campbell Millionaire?

Anyone can buy a million dollar house in a prestige area.  Well, anyone who had the sense to join the right company before they went public, that is.  But it takes a Special someone to buy a seven digit priced property in the land of homes that cost Not A Lot Of Money™.

130218-oburn-redfin1501 OBURN Ct
Campbell, CA 95008
$1,149,000

4 Beds
3 Baths
2,255 Sq. Ft.
$510 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1986
Lot Size: 9,594
Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 2 days
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Community: Campbell
MLS#: 81304821
Style: Contemporary
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

Beautiful Executive Campbell Home on Extra Large Corner Lot located in a Cul de Sac. Inviting Master Bedroom Suite with Walk in closets featuring Large Master Bath, Separate Shower and Jacuzzi tub. Oversized 3 Car Garage with extra storage space. Large Backyard has Private Patio with Running Waterfall. Side Yard has Storage Shed/Workshop. Award Winning Campbell School District with High API Scores

130218-oburn-bricksAre you thinking Lord of the Manor? Or is this more Can’t Even Qualify For Real Gray Area?

To which we say, does it even matter? The listing won’t even show you any inside photos. You want to see the inside, you had better buy this house, and quickly, because it’ll be gone before you know it.  Get the begging letter ready, bring your prequalification paperwork, and an extra suitcase full of cash for overbidding.

130218-oburn-kitchen-old

At right is the kitchen from the previous (2008) listing, which called out the granite and stainless.  The current listing copy doesn’t mention the kitchen at all!  Instead it goes on about the jacuzzi and the garage you can’t see instead.  And really, is there anything you can do about it? Well you could rent for the rest of your life, but who would respect you? Wouldn’t you rather live in a house like this and have a close, personal relationship with a series of banks for the next 30 years?

The bubble is back, and this $1.15M house in Campbell says you are its bitch. 

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:03 am

October 28, 2012

Innocent Ingenues, Allergy Antagonists or School District Scammers?

Here’s a great story we found via Inside Los Gatos, and by “great” this time we actually do mean “great.”  It’s got a number of hot buttons, so fire up your righteous outrage!

Los Gatos Family Continues to Fight School

Edwards family says school won’t let their kids attend because of nut allergies. Los Gatos Union School claims the family doesn’t live in the right district

By Stephanie Chuang, NBC Bay Area, Tuesday, Oct 23, 2012, Updated 9:15 PM PDT

Edwards family says school won’t let their kids attend because of nut allergies, school claims the family doesn’t live in the right district

In a story we first told you on NBC Bay Area last Friday, the tension between one South Bay family and the Los Gatos Union School District (LGUSD) is coming to a head.

Tuesday morning, the Edwards family walked 9-year-old Ella and 7-year-old Sarah into the Van Meter Elementary school office – only to be greeted by the superintendent and two police officers.

“That’s when my heart sank, when I heard there were police officers just to prevent my girls from going to the school they belong in,” said Shuly Edwards, the girls’ mother, before she began to cry.

121026-vanmeter-ella-sarahThis story has a mom claiming her daughters have been kicked out of five different schools because of their nut allergies.  It has a district superintendent retorting the family is scamming the district because they actually live elsewhere.  It’s got threatened lawsuits. And of course, it’s got video of the girls being cute on cue. 

Due to all the highly pressurized and flammable contents, we hope this will lead to a veritable flamefight lively discussion. And just to pour some gasoline on the fire, we’ll get you going with some of the ruder observations from ILG’s own commenters.  Below is the first video, with more background on the Edwards’ nut allergy claims.

121026-vanmeter-policeHere are some of the juicier rumors from Inside Los Gatos. (Burbed provides the comment summary as-is and without any implied warranty for accuracy. Some material appearing herein may not have been meant as a factual statement.)  The photo at right is also from the blog.

  • This family has a home in Campbell mom’s sister is renting from them
  • The same family was asked to leave Mulberry School (private) because of unreasonable food demands of others; mom is a troublemaker.
  • The same mom was in a different news story about her chronic migraines (Confirmed!)
  • Van Meter Elementary already has a nut-free lunch table
  • Family provided two addresses and the first one was fictitious; were investigated for 5–6 weeks.  They have until next Wednesday to provide all paperwork or they’re out again.

We laugh at the foolish reporter in the follow-up video (top) for comparing Los Gatos Elementary to Moreland and Campbell school districts. Stephanie Chuang asked administrators at the latter two if they had ever called police to resolve a residency dispute.  As all readers of Burbed know, only Real Bay Area cities have Real Bay Area schools worth lying to get your kids into.

Comments (26) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:12 am

August 5, 2012

Huge Charter School Controversy in the RBA (tl;dr warning)

120804-bullis-cartoonWe haven’t been shy about sharing our educational “reform” position with you: we distrust the charter school movement.  We believe they are a means for private corporations to strip school boards of their resources and teachers of their benefits by providing cut-rate education under the false flag of “school choice.”  After all, corporations exist to make a profit.  Would you really want your child’s education outsourced to the lowest bidder?  Of course not!  That’s why you’ll pay anything to live in the Real Bay Area!

Charter Schools’ Negative Impact on the Educational System

120804-bullis-protestCharter schools are being implemented all across the country, whether parents want them or not.  This is happening because some very wealthy people, not one of them with any education background, see this as a way to profit at the expense school boards and teachers unions.  Much of the current “school reform” movement has been taken over by tons of money from foundations from the Walton (Walmart), Gates (Microsoft) and Broad (construction and insurance) families and, of course, the Koch brothers.  These groups have completely derailed real school reform in favor of their plan to corporatize our educational system.

All that money crowds out real reform in favor of forcing charter schools, despite their lackluster performance despite their ability to cherry-pick students.  There are stories everywhere of neighborhood schools forced to close, fire all the teachers and administrators, and then reopen as charters, despite complete opposition from the affected teachers, parents and children.  Needless to say, this is most likely to happen where parents are not well-represented in the political system.  That is, this process is most likely to happen in poorer neighborhoods rather than wealthy suburbs.  Remember Waiting for Superman (which is, of course, pure propaganda)?  The Bay Area school in the film was in Redwood City.  And look at all the corporate charter schools that have popped up in Oakland and San Jose.

Click on through to find out what happens next.

(more…)

Comments (20) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:06 am

March 21, 2012

Located near downtown amenities in San Jose

Looking for something a little easy on the budget?  This house doesn’t cost a lot of money.  Thanks very much to Burbed reader sonarrat for this fine find in San Jose: a prewar cottage right in the middle of everything!

878 N 4th St
San Jose, CA 95112
$495,000

120319-n4th-redfin

BEDS: 2
BATHS: 1
SQ. FT.: 832
$/SQ. FT.: $595
LOT SIZE: 6,850 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
STORIES: 1
YEAR BUILT: 1939
COMMUNITY: Central San Jose
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81149902
SOURCE: MLSListings
STATUS: Active
ON REDFIN: 101 days

Charming 2 bedroom 1 bath home located in Hyde Park. Detached 2 car garage, wood burning fire place, hardwood floors, dining room and interior laundry. Located near parks, schools, shopping and downtown amenities. 101, 880 and light rail nearby. Large lot with room to expand. Do not disturb tenants.

120319-n4th-drivewayThis lawn sure doesn’t suggest it’s in the middle of a city of just under a million people, does it?  Why, this could be the suburbs anywhere, provided they were building suburbs in 1939.

Love the handy waste receptacles!

But why didn’t the agent mention the magnet middle school across the street, guaranteeing lots of traffic coming in from all over San Jose?  Plus, if you want to enroll your child in any program in SJ Unified School district, just hop across idyllic 4th Street, as this school doubles as a year-round enrollment center!  You’ll be first in line, and you can always sneak back home to refill your thermos!

120319-n4th-satellite

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:18 am