Hostile School Board
Original post made by outraged mother, Birdland, on Dec 19, 2009
There are two reasons why I think that the men on the board voted against Valarie. 1) They wanted to keep this board under control of the men and they did not think the women could handle it. 2) They were afraid, or pressured from staff, to not let any of the board members who ask intelligent questions to be the board president.
Valerie has obviously been spending a lot of time researching the issues (while Chris Grant has been traveling around for his job). She asks good questions and does it in a non-confrontational way. When talking about the parcel tax at this same meeting, Valerie was the one who suggested that the district engage those who were against the previous parcel tax to potentially work on parcel tax wording that has some of the problem fixed from the previous one. This is leadership. Instead Chris Grant just wanted to have meetings every month with the supporters of the parcel tax and plan how they will do the same thing again.
I hope the board members read this post and realize what they did was wrong and then reconsider their vote at the next board meeting. Valerie Arkin is well qualified. If this problem is not fixed, and this line in the ground remains there by those male board members, I would expect a lot of 3-2 votes for the next year. That is not a good thing while the district is going through budget issues, changing of a superintendent, and a potential parcel tax. In fact, I believe this vote jeopardizes any change of a parcel tax. With the women being treated the way they were at this meeting, in a disrespectful matter, I do not expect this board will be working together very well. When people work together, and respect each other, they are more willing to compromise. I would not expect many compromises this year as the 3 men have shown a disrespect to the 2 women on the board.
I sure hope the men reconsider their vote and work to bring our district back together. Their actions are much more harmful to our students than the reduced funding, in my opinion. We are going to have difficult budget times whether or not we have a parcel tax and we need a board that respects each other so they can work together. This hostile vote was not a good way to unite the board.