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Rep. George Miller supports charter bill

By Theresa Harrington
Thursday, September 8th, 2011 at 11:56 am in Education.

Rep. George Miller delivered the following remarks on the House floor today in support of the Empowering Parents through Quality Charter Schools Act, according to a news release I just received.

“Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of the Empowering Parents through Quality Charter Schools Act.

This legislation is the first bipartisan piece of the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

It passed the Education committee with bipartisan support, and I’m hopeful it will receive similar support from the full Congress.

This country is facing a severe education crisis. Our schools are simply not meeting the educational needs of our students. This is a threat to our global competitiveness and our economic security.

Charter schools began 20 years ago as a laboratory for innovation to help tackle the stagnant education system at that time and give options to parents who felt helpless.

These schools often become the myth busters for what’s possible for a demographic of children that was written off.

Currently, they serve about 4 percent of all public school students. In urban areas, that number is much higher.

Charter schools are not a silver bullet and won’t solve all our education challenges. But they have become an important part of our education system. We need to update the law to reflect that reality.

The Empowering Parents through Quality Charter Schools Act encourages effective reforms that will help transform schools and communities.

First, this bill makes significant improvements to the existing Charter School Program and addresses issues we’ve heard from education advocates across the country.

It rightfully returns charter schools to their original purpose – public schools that identify and share innovative practices that lead to improvements for all public schools.

It requires that charters be brought back into the traditional public system as opposed to running in a parallel system.

And it requires charters to actually serve all student populations and therefore provides more parents with real choices.

Second, this bill prioritizes accountability.

It puts student achievement first. And it greatly increases the accountability of charter school authorizers.

Third, this bill addresses a recurring problem in charter schools, which is the lack of service to students with disabilities and English Language Learners.

In this bill, we dramatically improve access for underserved populations. We require better recruitment and enrollment practices for underserved populations.

Lastly, this bill is rightly focused on our students and what they need to succeed.

In many states, high performing charter schools are a great option for some students.

These schools are closing achievement gaps and shattering the low expectations that have stood in the way of student success.

Charter schools have been on the forefront of bold ideas and innovation in education. They’ve shown that given the right tools, all students can achieve at high levels.

We’re learning from great charter schools about works for students and what students need to be able to compete in a global economy.

Replicating this success will help our students, our communities and our economy.

With this legislation, we can help replicate that the positive reforms happening at some charter schools will happen at all charter schools. We can help ensure best practices are shared within a school district.

But this legislation is only one piece of the education reform puzzle.

Unfortunately, we’re not taking on the whole Elementary and Secondary Education Act today, just one part.

This country is in the midst of the most dynamic education reform atmosphere I’ve seen in my tenure in Congress.

The reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act presents an opportunity to take hold of that momentum and finally bring our education system to the future.

The bill before us today is good, but we need to do much more.

It will be a tremendous disservice to our children and our country if we don’t provide relief for schools who are struggling under an outdated law.

This relief should come in the form of a full, comprehensive reauthorization of ESEA.

To do that, we have to take on ALL of the real issues facing all our schools, not just charters.

We need to address accountability, data, assessments and college and career ready standards and modernizing the teaching profession.

And we have to hold true to the reason that the federal government has a role in education in the first place – to ensure equal opportunity for every student in this country to a great education.

We know what it will take to fix our schools – it isn’t a mystery. But accomplishing that goal isn’t easy. It takes real political will to overcome ideology and to stay focused on what’s best for kids.

I hope my colleagues will join me in supporting this bill. And I hope that we can get to a much more comprehensive reauthorization of ESEA in the near future.”

Do you think Congress should pass the Quality Charter Schools Act?

[You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.]

  • school teacher

    That is beautiful bureaucratic politico-speak. “shattering”, “bipartisan support”, “threat”, “dynamic”, “tremendous disservice”. Sounds very authoritative, and ominouts at some spots, but, he really doesn’t say anything. He says we know what it will take to fix our schools- it isn’t a mystery. Well, what is it? The solution is never mentioned. Does anyone think that legislating things fixes schools? I would say no.

  • Doctor J

    School Boards are between a rock and a hard place when asked to approve a Charter proposal. Charter proponents feel that school board hasn’t been meeting the needs of their children, and the Board feels that approving a Charter petition would be an act of tyranny. Most school boards have denied the petitions only to have them approved at the County BOE or State BOE. In the end, the School Board has only postponed the inevitable and angered a whole lot of voters who still vote for or against school board members even though their children go to the Charter.
    We see the same thing happening in MDUSD — the Board taking pre-emptive action to take away “leave of absence” from the teachers, subtly threatening retaliation at any teacher who goes with the charter, and playing hide the ball with the budget numbers. The Supt even hired his long time sidekick as principal at the charter-to-be, and she had cut red tape like an old fashioned master butcher to get things “done” that have been in the clogged bureaucracy for years. Impressive. But her next job is being held for her at the district office, where ultimately she has been promised an “Asst Supt.” job like she held with the Supt in their last district. Frankly, its not a national security secret.
    This charter effort is exemplary. They have the support of the entire city council of Clayton, Congressman George Miller, a champion of education for decades, and an overwhelming majority of the citizens of Clayton. That kind of support is like a Tsunami. Its not going away, and it could do some huge damage if it strikes. No one in the charter circles have ever seen such strong support for a charter in the community.
    What should the school board do ? Board President Gary E. is a fighter — he would rather fight than switch — remember that old cigarette commercial. Sherry W. usually follows Gary’s lead but she is smart in her own way. Linda Mayo has always until recently put students ahead of politics — recently its been a little less defined than that. Lynne Dennler champions herself as the teacher representative — this charter is a “teacher trigger conversion” and should gain her support. Cheryl Hansen is a dyed in the wool public school servant but has been in enough rodeos to know the reason for the charter conversion is unhappiness with the status quo in the district she once worked in but is practical enough to know the charter will ultimately be approved.
    The district office wants some certainty about which teachers will go with the charter and which won’t earlier than later so they won’t be interviewing all summer — can you imagine the Dent Center working in July ? Teachers by contract don’t have to disclose until June 15. The district wants February 15. Board Math tells me that the middle point is April 15: 6-2=4. The district deep sixed the teachers right to a year leave of absence. Unless there is compromise, I suspect the teachers will let the district office know on June 15 and the District will get to sweat out the summer at the Dent Center, reading applications, checking references, and conducting interviews — hope the Air Conditioning is working well and the school administrators don’t have summer plans ! :-)
    What ALL parties need to understand is there is a win-win for everyone. The Board doesn’t have to agree with the Charter to approve it — it just has to acknowledge that it has crossed the t’s and dotted the i’s and it can approve it. It can say to the charter: “We don’t agree with your motives or methods, but its your choice and the choice of parents who send their children to the charter. If it doesn’t work out, we welcome you back.” The charter can say to the District, we understand you need to know who is teaching next year, and so let’s agree on an April 15 deadline, but District you must allow the teachers to have a one year leave of absence to return if they want. The fact of the matter is that it will take the charter a couple of years to either succeed or fail.
    Let’s remember that two of the five Board members from MDUSD are up for re-election next year. EVERY Clayton voter will be voting for MDUSD school board members, regardless of whether their son, daughter, neighbor or friend is a student at the charter or not.
    Let’s find a “win-win” for everyone. Let the charter succeed or fail. Its the parents choice for their children.

  • Sue Berg

    Dr. J, Those trying to identify you can now stop looking for someone who works in the Dent Center. Your question, “–can you imagine the Dent Center working in July?”, shows you do not. Having worked in that office for 9 years, I can say that summer is an incredibly busy time for staff there, putting closure on the year just ended and getting everything in place so schools can open the new one as prepared as possible.

    For the conscientious folks in Personnel the summer months are critical if schools are to open fully staffed. The sooner they know what positions will be vacant, the better the pool of candidates they have to choose from and the more time for the recruiting and hiring process of each new employee. Most school job changes, in any district, occur in July and August. The imposition of furlough days and reduced staffing have only made work during these months more stressful. Site administrators with positions to be filled also work during the summer, even if it’s not on the clock.

    In my long career in education, I’ve worked in all areas of a school district, including in a high school as a teacher. I can say that the people who work in the support positions, at sites and in district offices and the maintenance yard, get far too little credit for the hours and efforts they put in to make sure teachers and students can focus on learning. Your snide comments about them are unwarranted, and unnecessary to your main issue: your disdain for the superintendent and the Board officers.

  • Anonymous

    Hi Sue,

    Do you think your old cronies are going to vote yes on the Charter?

  • anon

    The 9/13/11 Board Meeting Agenda has been posted on the Electronic School Board section of the district website.

  • Theresa Harrington

    When I click on it, it says: “Agenda has not been approved for public viewing.”

  • anon

    I found it on the esb.mdusd.k12.ca website. It’s a very roundabout way of viewing the agenda, but it’s there.

  • Theresa Harrington

    Yes, now it’s showing up: http://esbpublic.mdusd.k12.ca.us/public_agendaview.aspx?mtgId=307
    So, staff is giving trustees three options: approve, deny, or approve with conditions: http://esbpublic.mdusd.k12.ca.us/public_itemview.aspx?ItemId=4476&mtgId=307

  • Just J

    The powers that be must not be happy. As soon as the agenda was posted the sky became dark and now lightening….:-0

  • Sue Berg

    Anon #4, most of the people I consider my “old cronies” no longer work for MDUSD. Some of you would think that’s a good thing.

    I only wish I’d done a better job in my former communications position of letting the community know the many positive changes those “old cronies” helped initiate and even accomplish over the course of 10 years. But, as comments on this and other blogs (especially those that have been closed) show, the critics tend to take over and shape the dialogue. Those of us who attempt to offer a different point of view (both now and in the past) are shouted down.

    I know that MDUSD is inherently a good district with dedicated, hard-working, well-intentioned staff. I wish there were a way for more people to see and talk about that part of the district.

  • Doctor J

    @Sue #3. well Sue its clear that you weren’t around this July — no one answering the phones, no security, cutbacks, layoffs , etc — its just not what it used to be. Don’t jump to too many conclusions. And I will continue to agree with you that there are many dedicated, hard working, well intentioned staff.

  • Just J

    Well intentioned is not good enough. with that intention we need action. You know where they say is paved with good intentions. The District office was very bare this summer. I was there a few times and there was hardly anyone there. That may not have been the case years ago but it has changed (at least over the summer)

  • Doctor J

    Conditional approval ? ROFLOL. MDUSD can’t even meet its own “conditions” it wants to impose on the charter. On Monday — yeah this Monday — they have to file their “corrective action plan” for the SIG funds they were denied. Their MOU with MDEA is short a ton of bricks according to Torlakson’s August letter and won’t pass muster. Oh well, another $15 million down the drain.

  • Theresa Harrington

    Sue, I would also like to shine a light on that part of the district. I was very pleased last year when district officials allowed me to visit Mt. Diablo HS’s Project Lead the Way academy, to profile MDHS teacher Dan Reynolds and to visit Meadow Homes and Rio Vista elementary schools this year to highlight their improvement.
    At other times, however, the district is slow to respond and gets left out of stories such as today’s front page piece about teaching 9/11. Surely, some MDSUD teachers must be doing special lessons or activities with their classes, but no one returned my inquiries regarding this, so Walnut Creek Intermediate was highlighted instead.
    Superintendent Steven Lawrence recently told me about a new program at Mt. Diablo HS aimed at drop-out prevention. I sent him and email saying that I would like to write about it and asked if I could visit with a photographer, but he never responded.
    Also, our weekly newspapers are very happy to send photographers to school events and highlight good things going on. But, if no one tells us about them, we can’t cover them.
    Former Interim Superintendent Dick Nicoll often told me about interesting school activities, which I highlighted: such as a special event at Pine Hollow Middle School to help an ill student.
    People are also encouraged to post comments on this blog about positive things going on in schools, such as comments from CVHS parents who are happy with improvements at that school.
    Successes at Holbrook Elementary have also been highlighted on this blog.
    Some people, however, use the blog to air grievances they may not feel comfortable doing publicly.
    I received a phone call Friday from a Dad complaining that his autistic son has been left stranded at school more than once, when no bus arrived. I hope he will be willing to go “on the record” for a story, because according to him, the district is not doing its job.
    These types of stories, too, need to be told, so the district will be held accountable for the service it is legally obligated to provide to students.

  • http://www.k12reboot.com Jim

    I have to say that some of Rep. Miller’s comments may not be as Choice-friendly as one would hope. When he says that charters “need to return to their original purpose of being innovative”, does that mean that there is no place for charters that perform better simply by executing the basics better than the local traditional district? When he calls for charters to be “more accountable”, does he mean that charters will be held to a higher standard than the local traditional schools (as Julia Brownley’s “reform” bills in the CA legislature attempted to do)? If he wants to force charters to serve more English Language Learners and other underserved populations, how, exactly, would he propose to do that? Would he agree to forcing quotas on charters (as many defenders of traditional schools have proposed), even though such quotas would never be applied to public schools, which also exhibit wide variation in the percentage of ELLs enrolled?

    And finally, when he calls for charters to be “brought back into the traditional public school system”, what, exactly, does that mean? Charters have become a “parallel system” because the traditional district monopolies were not responsive to the needs of students and families. Do we really want to put charters into a system that is often failing so miserably?

    I would like to see Rep. Miller become a more outspoken advocate of School Choice, but I also know that he has relied on traditional education interests and educator unions for significant support. He wouldn’t be the first politican to tout education “reform” while doing everything possible to protect entrenched bureaucratic interests. Many other supporters of this bill appear to represent interests that have opposed School Choice in the past. We will have to see what actions actually result from this rhetoric.

  • Curious Parent

    Theresa, could you let us know what the bill actually says? It’s hard to tell from a politician’s statement. How will it affect charter schools up and running now or charter schools openning in the future?

    I’d love to see charter schools return to their primary mission of being “public schools that identify and share innovative practices that lead to improvements for all public schools”, in Rep. Miller’s words. Rarely do charter schools do that. Look at the only charter school up and running in MDUSD. Eagle Peak is a Montessori school. Montessori schools have been around for years and years. I don’t think anyone can claim they are innovative. Look at Clayton Valley HS. The teachers behind that conversion aren’t even claiming the school will be innovative, just that they will get better pay and benefits, and they believe they’ll be able to do a better job running it than MDUSD.

    Once a charter school gets started very few of them get shut down for anything other than egregious fiscal mismanagement. No matter how mediocre the education they provide, they continue on, untouchable because they are charter schools. I hope the bill Rep. Miller is touting actually makes the charter schools more accountable and forces a shutdown of those that don’t provide a demonstrably better education than the neighborhood schools around them. Let someone else have their funding and a chance to try something different.

    The fact is that the charter movement has largely been a bust when it comes to improving education. Can anyone think of any innovations that have made their way out of the charter movement and into mainstream schools? Studies have shown that charter schools are no more effective at educating students than traditional schools. Where charter schools do excell is at attracting the better students from surrounding schools. It makes the charter school look good and the neighborhood school look worse, but it’s not really improving educaton in America.

  • Theresa Harrington

    Here’s a link to more information on the bill: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d112:h.r.2218:

  • Theresa Harrington

    The special education Community Advisory Committee expects to receive a “transportation update” from Jeff McDaniel tonight at 7:10 p.m.

  • Doctor J

    and ???????

  • Just J

    I am not sure I understand why special Education transportation is messed up to begin with. Are there that many students with transportation?

  • Theresa Harrington

    Yes and based on what I heard last night, the district’s busing system is in crisis.
    Some parents said: “I don’t think the board understands how bad it is. It’s dire.”
    Mildred Browne said she learned at about 5 p.m. that Jeff McDaniel, who was supposed to give the transportation update, was ill and was taking a 30-day leave. So now, Browne said she doesn’t know who’s in charge and she doesn’t have the answers the parents were seeking.
    She said she planned to meet with Superintendent Steven Lawrence today to discuss the problems, which are many.
    Some parents said they may complain to the board tonight.

  • g

    Drive a five mile circuit through the neighborhoods near schools around 8am and you will encounter a minimum of a dozen empty buses or buses with only one kid. I know there are circumstances where you cannot put all kids in the same bus, and some kids get their “very own” bus for a reason, but somebody somewhere is not organized at all.

    As just one example; a bus picks up my friend’s child about 5 houses down from closed Holbrook, drives just that one child right past Wren to get to his special school. Why can’t that bus also pick up and carry 14 other kids to Wren? There must be dozens of cases like this.

  • Theresa Harrington

    There are also kids who are not being picked up at all, and kids who are being dropped off at the wrong locations.
    Yet, this plan has been in the works for two years.

  • Just J

    So isn’t Mildred the super. of special ed? Isn’t the busing of these children part of their special ed program? Why does she not know who is in charge if someone is ill? It seems that the district yet again does not have the right people for the job. Mr. Lawrence I think is way over his head. Again I say this seems so simple to fix. In the real world of business you can’t let things like this happen. Your business would be shut down. I think the answer is in my statement….It’s time for all of you to go!

  • Theresa Harrington

    Transportation is handled by Jeff McDaniel and Greg Rolen, so Mildred Browne said she didn’t know what the transportation plan was.
    But, she said she has been getting about 100 complaint calls a day. So, she is now trying to find out what is going on.

  • g

    Theresa, are there any figures available on how many requests were made and approved or denied, for example on Tier and NCLB basis, for transfers to different schools? I’m thinking specifically of Holbrook/Wren cases. Holbrook to Sun Terrace is not quite so bad, but kids at Holbrook brought their scores up almost a hundred points in just two years and nearly half were sent to a declining, much lower rated school that is well over a mile farther away. And are those that were approved being bused? I think busing is a requirement in this case…?

  • Theresa Harrington

    I don’t have those figures and since no transportation update was given last night, that information hasn’t been made available to the public.

  • Wait a minute

    So, another festering problem has reached the crisis stage in the MDUSD?

    Bussing Gate.

    District “Counsel” gets a raise along with 4 other buddies and gets the additional duty of being assigned to supervise Special Ed Transportation to earn those extra bucks.

    Since then the system has gone from bad to intolerable on his watch with large amounts of overtime being paid to bus drivers to go back and correct problems of kids not being picked up or dropped off on time. Add thjis to rightfully angry parents for having to worry about their special needs children being safely transported and supervised.

    Couple this with Rolen’s embarrassing and naked attempt to quash Alicia Minyens lawful right to get information as part of the Measure C Oversight Committee and do I sense we have a problem?

    Your correct J, in the real world Rolen would be fired instead of given a raise and several others would also be let go.

  • Theresa Harrington

    McDaniel was also given a promotion and a raise when he assumed responsibility for transportation, after the board decided to eliminate Pete Pedersen’s previous position of assistant superintendent for administrative services.
    The plan to assume all responsibility for busing in the district was originally conceived by Pedersen.

  • Just J

    What a flippen mess. This District has many problems that seem to get worse by the week. How can we demand accountabillity? How can we get rid of the people that are not doing their jobs? Or are they so prtected that we just have to take it?

  • Theresa Harrington

    Ultimate accountability rests with the board.
    Trustee Linda Mayo, who attended last night’s meeting, said she was aware of the problems. However, she offered no solutions and left before the meeting was over.
    Lorrie Davis, chairwoman of the committee, expressed frustration that neither Board President Gary Eberhart nor trustee Lynne Dennler were at the meeting, since they are the designated board liaisons to the committee.
    In McDaniel’s absence, responsibility also lies with Greg Rolen and Superintendent Steven Lawrence.

  • g

    Eberhart is too busy patting himself on the back for being able to walk 1.67 miles. He should try walking 1.79 miles in the shoes of 8 yr old kids carrying 10 pound backpacks to school.

  • Theresa Harrington

    Here’s the transportation plan the board approved last November: http://esbpublic.mdusd.k12.ca.us/public_itemview.aspx?ItemId=3295&mtgId=291

  • MDUSDude

    Yay! Let’s get this party started!

    #24

    Just J, your comments are always a kick. To clarify: the district is not a business. If it were a “Real World Business” as you say, then it would generate revenue through the goods and/or services it offers (taxes = not goods/or services). Ideally it would generate enough to cover its operating costs and maybe a little profit. It would also have the latitude to make immediate changes to pricing so it could maintain a balanced cash flow to keep staff on board, maintain its facilities and provide a consistent level of service to all its customers.

    And just so we’re clear Just J: Most businesses wouldn’t give the public unfettered access to their finances or the details of their meetings.

    #28 Wait A Minute

    The Alicia Minyen thing seems strange to me. The problem has never been about the districts treatment of the committee, but about Alicia.

    Even Mr. Peele’s chest beating column was not about the districts treatment of the committee as whole, but about the treatment of Alicia Minyen as an individual. She just happens to be a committee member.

    There was nothing in Alicia’s published email, letter or comments that suggest that a formal request for documentation was ever under consideration or had been approved by the collective committee members. By all appearances Alicia chose to pursue these requests as an individual. While I don’t necessarily side with the reaction of district counsel, if the committee didn’t mutually agree to request the documents then I don’t see how anything sinister can be gleaned from the district asking for funds to offset the copying costs or even pushing back on the request.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to discredit Alicia’s effort as a committee member because her concerns are significant, but the task of measuring the significance of her concerns, choosing how to proceed and how to best inform the public should not be hers alone. These choices should be made through deliberations by the entire committee. It is the committees collective voice that best represents the public interest. The guidelines by which members are appointed is intended to ensure that. When the committee is unable to operate in this fashion then the public is not properly served.

  • MDUSD Board Watcher

    Just got done reading the MDUSD evaluation of the Charter Petition. Shocker! Gary has found a way to deny the Charter.

    Too bad a dictator runs this district and other board members are afraid to stand up to him.

    Take it to the county board Claytonites, I have it on good word that they will be approving the application just like they did with the Flex academy.

  • Another MDUSD Mom

    MDUSD Dude,
    I agree with you, MDUSD is not a business because if it were a “Real World Business” it would have to offer a quality product and good customer service to stay in business. It would have to answer to its shareholders and would do so with respect in order to cultivate a long-term relationship. It would have the latitude to make changes to what it offered its customers because it would know that a quality product makes for a successful business not just the ability raise prices. A successful company understands that good customer service and employee relations is driven by a good company culture.
    You are most certainly right… MDUSD is not like a “Real World Company.”

    Someday maybe MDUSD will have leadership that stops whining and blaming and begins to address those things they can and should change.

  • Mt Diablo Jester

    Go to youtube and check out “MDUSD Parody”.

    Might be some foreshadowing of tonight’s meeting.

  • Just J

    MDUSD dude, I am not even going to go there with you. If you are happy with what is going on and are happy with the way your tax dollars are spent then you are entitled to your opinion.

  • g

    MDUSD Dude: Give just about any truly caring and independent district this $300,000,000.00 Education budget and I guarantee they could actually educate 32,000 kids, greatly increase the graduation rate and donate to their first year in college.

    I believe this District (and too many school districts these days)and the entire politicized school hierarchy are little more than self-employment machines. “Companies” dedicated to themselves and their benefit alone, while hiding behind kids, dedicated teachers, families and education.

  • Wendy Lack

    MDUSDude:

    Hate to break it to you, but it is common for citizen bond oversight committees to be populated by stooges for the employer and the (typically) sole taxpayer-organization rep to be in the minority in efforts to do a credible job of oversight.

    In the case of MDUSD, it appears that the sycophants on the CBOC have a long history of “going along-getting along” with the district.

    Wearing blinders to reality and “turning a blind eye” tends to get in the way of performing an oversight role.

    Thank goodness for committed individuals such as Minyen who have the courage and willingness to seek the truth, even if it ruffles feathers. That’s the job of bond oversight committees — though in this case, if Minyen were to wait until the committee as a whole reached consensus regarding records requests, I’d bet that NO-ZERO-NADA info requests would ever be made.

    The facts indicate that the committee as a whole is not interested in performing its oversight role or finding out the truth. Hence Minyen is left with no other option than to do her duty as a committee member as she sees fit to do so — alone, if necessary.

  • Number Eight

    Gotta wonder who would serve on an Oversight Committee if they cannot get the information that’s required to do the job?

    Gotta wonder why MDUSD buys expensive technology systems if they cannot easily email information to committee members?

  • Theresa Harrington

    Minyen said she still has not received the leases that she asked for, so she has submitted another Public Records Act request.
    The public, and committee, deserves to know what the district acquired through the lease purchase agreements it paid off with Measure C funds.

  • Wait a minute

    MDUSDude is obviously another apologist for the regime that is responsible for the problems. The MDUSD has become a well known a bad joke within the education establishment and with many of its own citizens. The disrepute, incompetence, and outright lack of ethics and corruption that now pervades the district’s leadership is a serious problem.

    Alicia Minyen is without a doubt the most qualified member of the oversight committee as a CPA and fraud investigator. The committee was stacked by the district with folks not fulfilling the fiduciary duties and Alicia appears to be the only one actually performing her duties of real oversight.

    Rolen and the district is still denying/delaying Alicia’s request for the Lease documents and I have a feeling they have something to hide. Just like they didn’t want it to be known that before the bond and any contracts were signed they were going to steer the Solar to Sherry’s Whitmarsh’s employeer Chevron and in fact the Solar applications had already been signed off by a Chevron Engineer!

  • MDUSDude

    #36 Sure. OK.
    #38 Thanks for allowing me my opinion.
    #39 Which budget are you reading?

    #40 Nice Wendy! Goodness, where do I begin? I’ll tell you what: I’m going to “turn a blind eye” to all of those statements that, coming from you, are rife with hypocrisy. I hope you can appreciate that. I will say though that your assertion that bond oversight committees are commonly populated with “stooges” is absent of any objective rationale.

    It are these types of characterizations and hasty reactions that needlessly foster a misinformed, speculative and anxious public.

    #43 An apologist for the regime? Laughable! See my response to #40, specifically, “speculative and anxious public.”