Ousted principal likely on school board agenda tonight

Vranesh remains on paid leave from Walnut Grove

The Pleasanton School Board will likely be discussing former Walnut Grove Elementary School Principal Jon Vranesh at its meeting tonight.

Although the topics of closed sessions are not released, the board has an agenda item to discuss employee discipline, dismissal or release for its closed-door meeting.

Last month, the board voted to hire another principal at Walnut Grove, and held a meeting for parents on Jan. 9 to ask what they want in a new head of the school.

Vranesh remains on paid administrative leave.

A request by the Pleasanton Weekly for documents surrounding his removal from his post was answered with a reply requesting a 30-day extension because, according the letter from the district's attorney, Kim Bogard of Kingley Boqard LLP, "As a courtesy, our office notified Mr. Vranesh's attorney of its intent to respond and produce the documents requested in Pleasanton Weekly's request. Mr. Vranesh's attorney has notified our office of his: 1) client's objection to the production of the requested documentation; and 2) willingness to take legal action to prevent disclosure."

In an email to the Pleasanton Weekly this afternoon, Vranesh's attorney, Paul Kondrick, disputed the characterization of the response and stated there was not an objection to producing the documents.

Kondrick wrote in the email, "Mr. Vranesh indeed did not take the position with the District that he would fight the release of information, but rather, he stated to the District's attorney that he 'expects the District to take all necessary legal and other action to preserve the confidence and privacy of those matters and documents,' as appropriate, and would be willing to 'join any legal proceeding' necessary to best assure the protection of the privacy rights of PUSD students, parents and staff/employees as pertain to these ongoing District matters."

He also noted that "neither Mr. Vranesh nor our office has ever seen the entire so-called 'investigator's report' that your publication appears to be seeking."

In other actions at its meeting tonight, the board will consider adding six new music, science and engineering classes at high and middle schools for the next school year. The new classes, if approved, would cost the district more than $265,000.

The board will also consider reopening contract negotiations with the California School Employees Association on a number of items, and will also consider approving summer school programs for students that are falling behind.


Posted by 2ndgradeparent, a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Jan 14, 2014 at 10:14 am

I am saddened by this - however, I do not know all of the details & perhaps if I did, I would be happy. I really wish we knew more about Vranesh's sudden "forced" departure. He really came through for my student at Walnut Grove this past year - he went above & beyond for our family. I had dealt with him for a handful of issues at the beginning of this school year & all of last year. I appreciated his help, his positive outlook and his willingness to see outside of the box. My student is devastated that he is no longer there - she loved him. Whether the forced leave is justified or not, I will always be grateful to Mr. Vranesh and wish him the best.

Posted by Mary Bianci, a resident of Gatewood
on Jan 14, 2014 at 10:26 am

(Comment partially removed by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff) did you ever think about him, he has feelings, I have heard a lot of parents of Walnut Grove,
are so dedicated to him, they adore him, he has been a Pleasanton his entire life, he is so honest, better than this school board (with the exception of Valerid Arkin) you have been so wrong.
I also know parents who will put their children at private schools, because of what you are calling (ousted) him, his reputation is now ruined, shame on you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. I have also been told that at least 5 houses are now For Sale, all going to Danville and 2 families have already bought houses in San Ramon, all because of you.
If i were on this board, I do not understand how you sleep at night, that is just the worse.
Mary Bianci.

Posted by WGDad, a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Jan 14, 2014 at 11:30 am

I was not able to attend the Walnut Grove "meeting for parents on Jan. 9 to ask what they want in a new head of the school".

The Weekly never reported on this meeting. Can someone post what was said both by the Board and by parents?


Posted by WG Meeting , a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 14, 2014 at 2:15 pm

Ahmadi, Bill Faraghan, Odie Douglas and Joan Laursen were at the WG meeting. They did not address any concerns parents have with creepy District employees at Walnut Grove and their social networking sites.

Many attendees believe that the District management and their lawyers and the board have a credibility program and did not believe that Vranesh had said either of the two words that Ahmadi claims he said and believe it was all made up. Some expressed wishes that Vranesh will sue PUSD for libel and slander.

PUSD 'leadership' in attendance and I do say 'leadership' in quotes because they aren't actual leaders acted as if nothing had happened at that PUSD did nothing wrong. Ahmadi said she will handpick 2 and only 2 parents to be on the selection committee for the new principal. One will be the PTA president and Ahmadi will handpick the other. Parents were upset.

Ahmadi said the selection committee will not get the full list of applicants and she will handpick which ones she decides the selection committee will review.

PUSD said they could also hire someone will a preliminary administrative credential that is a VP (many parents thought they meant Munoz).

When asked about the qualities they want in the principal, most re-iterated the qualities that Jon Vranesh had (a principal that will play with the children on the playground, a principal with significant teaching experience, etc.)

Posted by WG Dad Too, a resident of Del Prado
on Jan 14, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Is it possible to recall Ahmadi?

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Jan 14, 2014 at 7:27 pm

It seems to me that nobody knows what happened? A few parents are angry but what does that have to do with firing anybody? Everybody experiences anger and other emotions. How can anybody expect to find support for their concerns if their is no public understanding of what happened?

I have a hunch that a few parents are angry and want to nothing more that pound their chests and implying something terrible has happened.

Millions of Americans have been fired from jobs. That will always happen. Perfect just does not rule the world!

Give it a rest already...I rest my case.

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Jan 14, 2014 at 7:29 pm

Correction: I have a hunch that a few parents are angry and want to do nothing more than pound their chests and imply that something terribly unjust happened.

Grow up and get a life!

Posted by Parent, a resident of Mohr Park
on Jan 14, 2014 at 7:58 pm

We moved here for the school. We have decided to also head to San Ramon while interest rates are good. Are kids are still young and we have to long to go to hope PUSD turns around.

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Jan 15, 2014 at 12:00 pm

I have a hunch that the above poster wants to move to San Ramon because of "interest rates"? I don't understand her post?

I was under the impression that you were mostly interested in schools for your children. But you finally tell the truth and state that you want to move to San Ramon because of "interest rates" dodo bird!

stop telling lies...

i rest my case...

Posted by john, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 15, 2014 at 1:34 pm


She probably means that interest rates on home loans are still low enough that they won't go up that much compared to her current loan on her Pleasanton house. That make a move to San Ramon still feasible.

Posted by Another Dejected Parent, a resident of Mohr Park
on Jan 15, 2014 at 6:53 pm

We decided to pull all our kids from Pleasanton schools too.

Posted by john, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 15, 2014 at 8:32 pm

"We decided to pull all our kids from Pleasanton schools too."

And put them where?

Posted by BePositive, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 15, 2014 at 9:52 pm

I am so tired of this negative press. For those of you who have spent the last few months complaining about the district and bad mouthing Walnut Grove, good riddens. Go ahead and move on to wherever you think things are better. Your sense of entitlement is over the top. He lost his job. You don't get a vote in it. He wouldn't have lost his job if he hadn't done some dumb things. I'm so sorry for his wife and kids, innocent bystanders, but "beep happens!" Move on Pleasanton Weekly. Isn't there something more positive to report on? Your negative energy is exhausting! So sad!!!

Posted by MrsJjhh, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jan 16, 2014 at 12:14 am

BePostive writes:

>> Move on Pleasanton Weekly. Isn't there something more positive to report on? Your negative energy is exhausting! <<

I agree that this story is anything but positive. But a newspaper's function is not to play Pollyanna.

Moreover, I quite understand why the school district and possibly some of its employees might fervently hope that the PW will lose interest in the Walnut Grove story and the wider issues concerning the running of the school district. But in my opinion, that makes it all the more important for the newspaper to continue to cover them.

Knowledge is power. As is the suppression of public access to information.

Posted by MrsJjhh, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jan 16, 2014 at 12:19 am

A correction. Needed, probably, for clarity:

I quite understand why the School District Office, Board ..... etc.

Posted by DR, a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Jan 16, 2014 at 12:41 pm

@ Be Positive Mr. Vranesh did not lose his job. He continue to be a district employee. I you are tired of finding out how dysfunctional PUSD is and how poorly it's run. Then don't go online. Put the paper down. Imagine how long term dedicated employees feel watching the decay.

Posted by Lessismore , a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Jan 16, 2014 at 1:24 pm

Cholo, a resident of Livermore

You need to find a life. I see you posting all the time it seems you just post to enrage people.

Please leave find something in Livermore to post about a,d let Pleasanton deal with it's only issues

Posted by Manfred, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Jan 16, 2014 at 2:17 pm

I agree with Lessismoron. Cholo is an enrager. Everything he posts just makes sensable people like me enraged. Wht we need to do is delete any post that does not start with the premmisse that Union Thug Teachers are bad. Because we know there bad. Really bad. That's why we sent ares to Texas to live with relatives. So that are kids excape the corruption and incompetance of PUSD union indoctrinizers and there puppet enragers like Cholo. Wake up people, don't be sheeple. There is a war a foot and are only hope is to say good riddins to unions.

Posted by Christoper Hogsworth, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 16, 2014 at 8:41 pm

So, this Vranesh fella. Does he not have a voice? What has he had to say about all this?

And, does he not have a lawyer? If the school district did him bad, it'll be made to pay. If not, tough toenails.

My question: Why all the galoots posting here and on other sites claiming to know what happened when nobody is speaking up? Are these local yokels opposed to legal remedies? Or do they simply like to bellyache for the sake of bellyaching?

Posted by Get the Facts, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 16, 2014 at 10:16 pm

Get the Facts is a registered user.

From a thread started on December 18th, here is what Vranesh is accused of (and from everything I heard about this before I read this, the below appears to be 100% accurate):

"- used vulgar and derogatory language in reference to women (specifically "b.tch" and "c.nt").
- made repeated comments of a sexual nature
- used threatening and intimidating language
- used bullying tactics to get what he wanted
- abused his position of authority"

Is this the guy you want leading your child's school?

Posted by WG Meeting, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 16, 2014 at 10:40 pm

If he had actually done those things, someone would have reported it sometime in the last 13 years. However, the facts are that as far as comments of a derogatory or sexual nature, it is Walnut Grove district employees making those comments, not Vranesh. And if he had actually used threatening or intimidating language, don't you think someone would have actually reported it by filing a complaint or calling the police?

And as far as material of a sexual nature, last time I looked the material of a sexual nature and using profanity is from union employees. Vranesh's lawyer will have a field day with this.

Posted by Get the Facts, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 16, 2014 at 11:18 pm

Get the Facts is a registered user.

To 'WG Meeting':

How do you think this got reported? It got reported by one, or more, staffers who filed a complaint. Just as you said.

". . . material of a sexual nature"? The quote said nothing of "material", those are your words, not the poster's words (the poster used the name, 'JV Facts').

Please stop trying to turn this into the teachers being at fault for this. Not really much for Vranesh's lawyer to do at this point. Vranesh is suspended WITH pay. Or what most of us call, a vacation.

Posted by WG Meeting, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 16, 2014 at 11:39 pm

Actually, Vranesh's lawyer will have a field day.

It is too bad that PUSD has become so crooked that not only are they ousting principals for no cause, but the Business Services department is also hiring contractors with PO Boxes in Sunol that appear unqualified to do the work. I wonder if Mr. Vranesh questioned that?

For example, PUSD recently hired a Sunol based firm called DRT Grading and Paving at Web Link for a Paving and Grading project at Harvest Park Middle School with no C-12 Earthwork and Paving License even though the bid requirements say it is required.
The bid requirements say:
LICENSE REQUIREMENTS: Bidders are required pursuant to California Business and Professions Code 7028 to hold a valid California B General Building Contractor and C-12 Earthwork and Paving Contractor License.

How do you suppose then that contract was awarded for a company with contractor's license #491406 that has no valid California B General Building Contractor license (it has an A) and absolutely no C-12 Earthwork and Paving Contractor License?


Business Phone Number: (925) 862-9900

P O BOX 429
SUNOL, CA 94586-0429

Entity Corporation
Issue Date 05/13/1986
Expire Date 05/31/2014
License Status ACTIVE
This license is current and active. All information below should be reviewed.






Posted by sad and mad, a resident of Birdland
on Jan 28, 2014 at 9:04 pm

Ahmadi has been terrible for this district. This district needs real leaders not ones who promote incompetents, run out good and moral leaders, and do anything including scapegoating, lying, cover-ups, and blatant disregard if not complicity in financial mishandlings of taxpayer funds to pacify special interests within the organization. And all for the goal of keeping her job. She is arrogant, arrogant. She cannot deign to come speak to the people's lives she is directly effecting, claiming confidentiality while making statements that continue to smear JV's name. Does she think this District is her personal fiefdom? Perhaps not living here or raising her children here is the reason. Wake up call Ms. Ahmadi. Your job is to run an organization so they can educate children. Period. We are sick and tired of your dirty political gains. Go back to Fremont, or any other place stupid enough to hire you.

Posted by WG meeting, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 17, 2014 at 8:42 pm

I have read that some of the Walnut Grove teachers took issue with the standard "Words of Wisdom" Character Education announcements that are read at every school site in Pleasanton including Walnut Grove. For example, one staff member is 'disturbed' that one announcement that Jon Vranesh read discussed African American history (inappropriate according to the entirely white Walnut Grove teachers). Others do not like the tone of the "Words of Wisdom" announcements.

It is no wonder that Rich Puppione, who came on as interim principal, left almost immediately.

Character education was brought to this District by Juanita Haugen, former board of trustee member, under the leadership of Superintendent John Casey. Perhaps the 4 members of the board and current superintendent do not know about the "Words of Wisdom" Character Education announcements because they are out of touch with what is going on in Pleasanton schools. Perhaps they should educate themselves. Or perhaps the Walnut Grove staff that made these libelous accusations should apologize.

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