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Search Starts for New Schools Leader

...Sherine Smith, whose final annual salary with benefits was $269,032. Smith announced her intention to retire in June with an annual retirement pay of approximately $150,000.

Kelp Forests Wither from El Nino

Warm water temperatures for nearly two years are starting to take a toll on the health of Laguna Beach’s offshore kelp forests, marine experts say. El Nino conditions are bringing warm-water surface currents up from the coast of Mexico. The currents are transporting colorful and...

Lasers Light Up Main Beachgoers

A green beam of light shot along the shore at Main Beach, striking a straight line through the dark water. As the next wave crested, it broke the beam, shattering the green light like so many shards of dancing glass, reminiscent of phosphorescent tides. It was an eye-popping...

Schools Move Millions Around to Play It Safe

With the chance that new state legislation might lower the amount of money public school districts can hold in reserve, school leaders received a report Tuesday that recommends borrowing from one of its own pots to pump up another. Just to be safe, board members are poised to cut...

New Weapons to Battle Coyote ‘Infestation’

This week, animal control officers with water-filled paintball guns started blasting coyotes that are getting too close for some people’s comfort. The idea is to teach the coyotes to be afraid of people so they’ll keep their distance, said Jim Beres, who supervises the city’s...

Organic, Lower Prices Top Shoppers’ Grocery List

Even as Gelson’s plans to take over where Haggen left off in Laguna Beach, some shoppers are hungering for an alternative to a grocery store chain that harkens back to the town’s natural-living roots. Since Haggen filed bankruptcy earlier this month, a question on some residents’...

Schools Consider Expansion Ideas

With $27 million earmarked for campus upgrades and 10 years to spend it in, Laguna Beach Unified School District board members, staff and a few residents reviewed wish lists this past Monday, Oct. 5, for additions at all four schools and improved playing fields at Laguna Beach...

Haggen Employees Numb and Mum

With their future income uncertain, employees at the Haggen grocery store in South Laguna are saying they’re numb, stunned and angry about what they called a “rude awakening.” A spokesperson said Tuesday the store will close by Nov. 24, just eight months after the ownership...

Updated: Nuclear Waste Storage Tops Off Two Agendas

Post amended Oct. 7: The California Coastal Commission voted unanimously Tuesday, Oct. 6, to grant Southern California Edison a 20-year permit for nuclear waste storage at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, which borders Orange County. Officials at Rosemead-based Edison,...

Forum Defines a Super Superintendent

At the first public forum Tuesday to discuss desired qualities in a new school district superintendent, local knowledge of the community received high marks. The desired attributes were suggested by the audience of 30 community members and written on large sheets of paper posted...

Sharing the Waves with Great White Sharks

  There are more baby white sharks close to shore than ever before, according to a Southland shark expert. And they’re not leaving any time soon. It’s time for Southern Californians to share the waves with the offspring of the icon of the sea, said shark expert Dr. Chris...

El Niño Brings Endless Summer

A long stretch of warm ocean water combined with humidity and rare summer rainstorms are creating some unusual winners and losers along the Laguna Beach shoreline, say ocean experts. The balmy water normally found off Baja California, where temperatures are typically higher than...

Absent School Board Member Returns

Amid controversy about missing school board meetings for more than three months, Carol Normandin took her seat again on the Laguna Beach Unified School District’s board at the last two sessions. In a letter read to the board by Supt. Sherine Smith July 28, Normandin said her...

Schools Rank High in New Tests

Laguna Beach Unified School District ranks second in Orange County for overall percentage of students meeting or exceeding new state assessment test standards, the district announced Wednesday. New state student assessment tests can’t be compared to previous tests but serve as a...

Schools Reopen with New Staff, New Classes

A record number of new teachers opened their doors to 3,037 students enrolled in four Laguna Beach Unified District schools this week. Since July 1, the district has hired 43 new regular employees, a record at least in recent history for the district, according to Leisa Winston,...