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Saturday, February 8, 2014

Emery School Board: Citizens Want Some Accountability

"We're Moving On"
School Board Code for
"We're Not Accepting Accountability"

The Emery School Board wants it both ways: They want our trust in their selection(s) of our school superintendents but when it all goes wrong they want to "move on"; they don't feel they need to answer to anyone for their bad decisions on the selection.
This is being revealed again as the Board starts up a campaign to derail citizen's requests for an explanation as to the recent disappearance of former Emery Unified School Superintendent Debbra Lindo.  Obviously, accountability isn't their strong suit.  That is clear now but also before when the same crew got hoodwinked by the false resume of former Superintendent Steven Wesley.  A quick look at the resume, riddled with falsehoods according to the San Francisco Chronicle, would have made anybody suspicious except the Emery School Board.  After the story hit the front pages, rather than accept accountability, the Board shifted the blame to the executive search company they had hired.  And don't even get us started on JL Handy, the former Emery Superintendent who  bankrupted the School District and fled town, law authorities in hot pursuit.
There's an M.O. pattern emerging here.

This time, School Board member John Affeldt would only comment, "we're moving on" when asked recently what happened to Ms Lindo.  His colleges refused to comment at all.  The refusal to accept accountability yet again is a mighty bold tactic for a group ready to make yet another superintendent pick.  Something tells us they're going to say the same things about the next superintendent they said about all the previous ones: it'll be a string of hyperbolic superlatives.  It'll be "wonderful" this and "fabulous" that.  But if Ms Lindo is so wonderful, why then is she not still the Superintendent?
School Board member John Affeldt
Speaks for his colleagues when he says
"we're moving on" after Debbra Lindo.
But before, the Board told us she was
 fabulous and not to listen to the teachers
about her.

This Board has chutzpah.
They stood by their superintendent choice in Debbra Lindo to the bitter end.  They stood by her when 93% of teachers wrote their Teachers Resolution explaining how they couldn't work with her shortly after she took office. They stood by her when they wrote a resolution of their own, backing Ms Lindo in response to and at the expense of the teachers.  They stood by her for a year and a half after the impasse by ignoring the teachers concerns as laid out in the Teachers Resolution.
Now Debbra Lindo is suddenly gone....made so by this School Board.  We want to know why.
We understand as an employee of the School District, the Board isn't free to reveal every detail regarding her termination but we also understand the Board can give us more information than they have done, which the totality essentially amounts to 'she's gone.'

This School Board has shown over and over transparency is anathema to them.  We say they can't be trusted with the selection of another superintendent until they tell us what happened to the wonderful woman that according to them, we all should have rallied behind, teachers be damned.

Barring any more information as to the "retirement" of the former Superintendent, we're going to have to assume this Board stands by Debbra Lindo's Declaration submitted to the plaintiffs in an anti-teacher lawsuit now taking place in Los Angeles.  In it, Ms Lindo expressed her desires to link student test scores to teacher pay and her desire to bust the teachers union by removing due process and tenure rights.  We have to assume these are the same sentiments of this School Board.  As they prepare to select yet another  $200,000+ School Superintendent we need to insist teacher's concerns are front and center.

So while "we're moving on" may help them escape an uncomfortable moment at a School Board meeting, it doesn't help us at all.  They may have moved on, but we want to fix what's wrong before endlessly and blindly lurching forward.  Let's start with some transparency and accountability.


  1. Has anyone asked whether there was a connection between Ms. Lindo's declaration in Vergara and her dismissal? Timing seems pretty interesting. Mr. Affeldt has been pretty public about his opposition to the case currently underway in LA Superior Court.

    1. Possible. But outrage from the Board over Ms Lindo's declaration isn't matched with any outrage over the plight of our own teachers vis a vis the Teachers Resolution. I don't think this kind of thing outrages them.

  2. Yea especially when you come in and change takeaway good teachers good workers and now you just leave us looking like s***