I am writing to explain why I am voting YES on RECALL and why I hope to succeed Mr. Orozco as Area 3’s school board trustee. Mr. Orozco, Mr. Lorona and Mr. Lopez have failed to adhere to a framework of rules and practices by which trustees ensure accountability fairness and transparency in relationship to its constituency.
Mr. Orozco, you were elected to serve us, the citizens of Area 3, but you DID NOT!! On February 3, 2015 you ignored our pleas to keep Mr. Mark Sutton as our superintendent and you willfully chose to support Trustee John Lorona’s personal vendetta against the then superintendent. When referring to the special interest group it’s actually citizens, many from your area who are demanding to be heard. Now, hear this loud and clear: We are not recalling you because we are disgruntled over the November 2014 election as you claim, we were only mobilized into action on February 3, 2015, when you side-stepped the best interests of the students and neglected to take into account the long-term stability of the district.
Board President John Lorona, wouldn’t even consent to moving the special meeting to a larger venue to accommodate all those that came out in support of Sutton. Hundreds of people were kept waiting outside in the cold and were only able to hear the proceedings through a sound system rigged at the last minute.
Your role as trustee is further defined by your fiduciary obligation of overseeing the financial health of the district and the proper management of its funds. You are entrusted with our tax-payer dollars and you behaved irresponsibly when you vetoed to terminate Mr. Sutton thereby forcing the district to pay out the remainder of his contract to a tune of $264,000.00 plus an additional $9,800.00 for health benefits.
Consequently, the district had to fund $18,500 for a human resources firm to recruit our new administrator. Your recklessness had a significant ripple effect causing a mass exodus of talented, seasoned teachers finding employment in other districts. Aside from the students themselves, teachers are the single most important and costly investment a district makes. Other districts are now reaping the rewards of our professional development dollars. Why? Many cited an unresponsive, over-bearing majority on the board. Selma Bears don’t bully, Mr. Orozco so respect our teachers! This teaching void has now been filed by mostly novice teachers requiring extensive training at the district level translating into greater expenses. It’s no wonder that in the Enterprise’s October 21, 2015 edition Mr. Lorona stated that the most urgent issue facing the district was its difficulty in finding “trained and qualified school teachers.” We HAD trained and qualified teachers but many left, very telling don’t you think?
Super-heroes are all the rage with schoolaged children but Mr. Orozco your super-hero mentality of single-handedly taking to fruition that laundry list of items you noted in your September 30th editorial is absurd. Remember that you are only 1 vote on a 5-person board. There is no I in team, isn’t that what we teach our children? At the top of your list of purported accomplishments is a full-time Police Student Resource Officer (SRO) at the middle school that SRO is a police officer from the city of Selma. Mr. Orozco you have no power of jurisdiction over the city of Selma or the Selma City Council. The SRO is there as a result of a joint agreement between the City and the District meaning your involvement was just your 1 vote! Furthermore, the drug dog contract with the city was not renewed. The COPsync program is on the horizon for the districts but don’t take credit for that. It’s a very effective program being brought to you by the Selma Police Department and the Selma City Council.
There is so much more to be written about your lies and misleading propaganda that can’t be expressed because of space constraints but let me finish by saying you are very much part of the status-quo of John Lorona’s antiquated ideas. Unlike you, I believe that quality education involves governance by trustees that will make decisions that will align the district’s policies, programs systems and resources to bring about the long-term stability of the district as measured by fiscal prudence, positive student performance outcomes, recruiting and retaining qualified and credentialed staff, increased community involvement and participation, and an unparalleled sense of respect and cooperation district-wide! I am that trustee!! PLEASE VOTE YES ON TOTAL RECALL!!!
Andy F. Montijo, Candidate Area 3