SMMUSD is committed to preserving trees by all reasonable means necessary. In 2008, registered consulting Arborist Cy Carlberg prepared tree inventories and tree reports for each of the SMMUSD schools. The purpose of these inventories and reports was to identify trees that would potentially be impacted by construction of the various Measure BB projects, as well as to identify “Jewel Trees” at the campuses. The designation and protection of special “Jewel Trees” is an example of how SMMUSD is taking the necessary measures to protect and preserve the campus urban forests wherever possible. Specimen trees are an important integral part of the existing campuses and the community. These trees will play a major role in moving forward with the proposed enhancements for the SMMUSD Campuses. The District’s Landscape Architect, Gaudet Design Group, is reviewing the initial “Jewel Tree” criteria and will amend them as needed. The initial criteria for a “Jewel Tree” are a weighted score of the following:

• Significant size or age
• Value by current industry philosophy
• Species quantity and rarity
• Prior maintenance history and pruning practice 
• Current health
• Branch structure
• Specific tree suitability for school site
• Educational value
• Relocation accessibility
• Relocation feasibility and survivability

Examples of Jewel Trees - Grant Elementary School - Gold Medallion

Examples of Jewel Trees - Grant Elementary School - Gold Medallion

The tree reports prepared by Ms. Carlberg, also identified all the trees in the project areas that are proposed to be removed, relocated, or preserved and protected. Staff recently updated the eligibility criteria for tree removal based partly upon the City of Santa Monica’s Urban Forest Master Plan, with special consideration of SMMUSD requirements. The categories in the Tree Removal Criteria worksheet include: Health and Vigor, Risks, and Adjacencies. Upon determining a tree is eligible for removal, the next step is to complete a Tree Relocation Assessment. The purpose of assessing eligibility for relocation is so that trees eligible for removal may be preserved at the campus in an alternate location, if feasible. The Tree Relocation Assessment is another example of how SMMUSD is upholding its commitment to preserving the trees at our schools. Below you can find  copies of the Tree Removal Criteria and Tree Relocation Assessment worksheets.

Tree Removal Criteria and Tree Relocation Assessment Worksheet

Tree Preservation FAQ

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