Mira Vista 2020-21 Impressions. New Principal, Etc?

Hi all -- My husband and I are looking to move from Oakland. El Cerrito is especially appealing to us, but as we consider different areas, some we see are zoned for Mira Vista Elementary. We so very much appreciate all the thoughtful information shared here. We love that MV is so diverse, the parent and community involvement. Since most info is 2+ years old, we're posting in hopes to get some updated info. We've read fantastic things about the old principal Mr. Chilcott and his impact on the school in recent years, and see that there's a new principal, Charlotte Betson. Our oldest will be entering Kindergarten Fall 2021, so any and all information (for better or worse) on the more recent state of things (even considering current distance-learning) would be awesome to hear. Thank you, in advance!!

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Hello! We have two kids at Mira Vista, both in the elementary side but the plan is to remain through 8th. While the information on BPN is perhaps a bit dated, I think it's accurate to say that it continues to represent the culture and values of the school. Our kids experiences at MV have been overwhelmingly positive, academically they are doing great, ahead of grade level in fact. Awesome dedicated teachers and staff, and an active PTA. More importantly our kids have always felt enthusiastic about going to school, and feel safe and emotionally supported in the environment. We have lived in East Richmond Heights for several years now and find the welcoming and unpretentious MV community a reflection of the neighborhood at large. As for your questions about our new principal, Ms. Betson has only been on the job for about two months now, and due to distance learning she has not been able to actually "meet" any of us (students or families). She has been very available virtually however and has expressed a commitment to continue to wonderful progress that the school has made over the last 8 years of Chilcott. My impression is that she's a kind, experienced and committed admin but I think you'll be hard pressed to get a more details about her impact on MV at this point since it's all so new. As for distance learning experience, while nothing compares to the engagement of being together in the classroom, my kids' teachers are doing a remarkable job of providing thoughtful and meaningful instruction via the various platforms (Seesaw for my younger, google class for my older). I am very grateful for their efforts, and can only imagine how much more work they are doing. We are all-teachers, students and families- very much looking forward to returning to the campus!  It's not perfect-no school is. I wish there was more funding for a full time art teacher (there's a program that funds a visiting art teacher but no one on staff). The free after school program fills up quickly and there are limited other options in the area. Aside from that we don't have any real complaints, it's been a good fit for our family. Last consideration, being able to send the kids to their zoned neighborhood school (after considering navigating all sorts of waiting lists/lotteries in other cities) has been such a boon. Hope this helps and good luck with your search (btw East Richmond Heights should be on your radar, right next to El Cerrito but a tick down in terms of price)