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CUSD has a calm, cool and collected school year

The Claremont Unified School District had a year marked by both stability and growth.

The passage of Measure G last year allowed the district to fully renovate the CHS gym, install new roofs on all the schools and replace some worn and outdated modular classrooms.

A highlight for students and teachers is undoubtedly the upgrading or installation of air conditioning and efficient, new windows at many sites.

Under the leadership of Superintendent Jim Elsasser and Assistant Superintendent of Business Services Lisa Shoemaker, CUSD had a banner year financially. The district remained on track and under budget for both projects and operational costs. And according to the agenda for the board’s next meeting, the district’s good financial health will continue through 2021.

There was no board election this year—it was cancelled after no one filed to run—so Hilary LaConte, Steven Llanusa, Dave Nemer, Nancy Treser Osgood and Beth Bingham will remain at the dais, helping steer the district on its current path.

As the district forged on with construction, the schools certainly kept busy.

In May, Claremont High School Theatre department closed out its 2017-2018 season with the California high school premiere of a musical production of Freaky Friday.

Claremont High School English teacher Tamara Nicoll spearheaded the inaugural literary celebration, “WORDPlay: A Festival of Writing,” on May 19. “The primary objective of this event is to inspire students with a positive mindset about the transformative power of written expression,” said Ms. Nicoll.

The El Roble Intermediate School Marching Band and Color Guard got the word in October that it had been asked to perform at the 2020 London News Year’s Day Parade. Program boosters are now in the midst of raising the $740,000 needed for the late 2019 trip.

Claremont High School theatre department brought a modern take of Shakespeare’s Macbeth to the Don F. Fruechte Theatre in December, capping the troupe’s 2018 season.

Capping out the year was a California Distinguished School honor going to Vista del?Valle Elementary.

—Kathryn Dunn and Mick Rhodes