Tuesday, November 24 , 2015, 4:33 pm | Partly Cloudy 66º

Principal Reassigned to Oversee Santa Maria District’s Local Control Funding Formula Task Force

By Kenny Klein for the Santa Maria Joint Union High School District |

An Ernest Righetti High School principal this week has been reassigned to accept a position to oversee more than $5 million of state funding for specialized programs dedicated to positive student outcomes.

The state's new accounting system of local school funds is known as the Local Control Funding Formula, or LCFF. The goal of LCFF is to simplify the distribution of educational funds and gain flexibility, according to the California Department of Education.

Steve Molina will become the Santa Maria Joint Union High School District's LCFF Task Force coordinator. The position involves the supervision and implementation of the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP), guidance services, student services and federal categorical programs. Molina will also have a chance to take part in revamping the English Learning Program and providing new technology for students and staff.

Superintendent Dr. Mark Richardson believes this is a great opportunity for Molina to be involved in a very "mission critical" piece of the district's planning process.

"The LCFF/LCAP Plan will set the course for our district for years to come and it touches on many parts of the organization,'' Dr. Richardson said. "Given the potential impact of the LCAP Plan on the district, it makes sense to have someone providing the oversight and direction it deserves.''

Molina, who has been Righetti's top administrator since July 2007, is ready for the challenge.

"With the new funding change, we want to ensure that our community and students prosper,'' Molina said. "This is our opportunity to make a difference and get to the next level if we do it right.''

The new Righetti interim principal will be Karen Rotondi, who has served as the school's assistant principal for the last five years and has been an educator for 17 years.

"I'm excited and looking forward to continuing the strong educational reputation of Righetti through the hard work of students, staff, alumni and community partners,'' Rotondi said.

— Kenny Klein is a media affairs coordinator for the Santa Maria Joint Union High School District.

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