Family kept awake by new light system at Pleasanton school

PLEASANTON, Calif. (KGO) -- Bright new outdoor lighting at a public school in Pleasanton may have improved security, but the light fixtures have proven to be annoying to some neighbors.

Judy Fenton manages to laugh about a situation that has bothered her for some time. The new lights installed this summer at Fairlands Elementary in Pleasanton border her backyard. Judy describes the lights as glaring.

"It does come over the top," Judy said while pointing above the curtains.

Fenton installed thick curtains, but she says the light still manages to seep in between the gaps and from above the curtain. Her husband has also constructed a privacy lattice on the couple's fence, raising it several feet higher.

Nothing has worked so far to keep the light out.

"I never know what time it is. It's always dawn," Fenton said.

The lights are attached to the exterior of portable classrooms. At its worse, Judy says the light shines from one end of her home to the other. On this day, she says it's not so bad because the light on the fixture closest to her bedroom is off.

Fenton asked 7 On Your Side for help and we contacted the Pleasanton Unified School District. A school spokesperson told us it's trying to be a good neighbor.

Since we contacted the district, the lights facing Judy's home have been pointed down. The district is also looking into getting lower wattage bulbs.

"Finally we did get to some solution. It's not perfect, but it is a solution. I want to thank 7 On Your Side for getting it all together."

The district promises to continue to work on resolving this completely.

It released this statement:

We were happy to know that the new light fixtures installed following the Fentons' initial concerns were helpful. We're continuing to reach out to the Fentons to discuss any additional accommodations that can be made."

Plans are in the works for a meeting between the family and the district.

Click here for a look at more stories by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.
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