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  • Tuesday, October 14, 2014


    OUSD 5-2 against Super Sports lease

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD      
    a news service of   Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    OUSD Board votes 5-2 against
    Super Sports lease at Peralta

    At their last regularly scheduled meeting on September 11, 2014 the Orange Unified Board of Trustees voted 5-2 against an 18 month lease extension for the Super Sports complex at the Peralta site. 
     The  current lease expires in March 2015.

    Opposition to the proposed lease extension (which included a clause that OUSD could not offer to sell the land during the lease period) drew fire from both Trustee Rick Ledesma and Trustee Timothy Surridge. Both stated that they were against the clause preventing the Peralta site from being sold as well as belief that the district was in an enhanced position to dictate other terms-or find another operator if the property was not sold. The two Trustees are running for re-election and have had their opponents endorsed by the Peralta neighborhood group and other Greater Orange open space advocates

    Trustee Kathy Moffat who made the motion to approve the contract extension (with Surridge seconding the motion-then voting against it) cited numerous reasons for approving the lease extension- including her opposition to selling the land for development. Moffat has long maintained that the land (which is zoned by the City of Orange for housing) should be saved for the distant future needs for Orange Unified.

    Trustee Diane Singer also voted to deny the lease stating she wanted district staff to come back at a future meeting as an informational item (which cannot legally be acted upon) with more information on possible leasing options.

    OUSD Trustee Dr. Alexia Deligianni joined with Moffat in voting to approve the lease extension- OUSD President John Ortega, and Trustee Mark Wayland voted with the majority against the extension.

    Male OUSD Trustees vote to exclude 17 word reference to prohibit "unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks or other unlawful considerations"  
    A routine Board Policy vote became a protracted battle of the sexes parliamentary struggle over deleting anti-corruption wording from a Board Policy at the September 11, 2014 OUSD Board meeting. At that meeting the four OUSD male trustees majority again voted to trump the three female trustees ongoing concerns for assurances for an open and transparent OUSD polices and procedures. In the resulting discussion the integrity of the Measure K process was specifically cited, but other wide-raging ethical concerns on the deleted anti-corruption wording  have been raised. 
    ( For more information on MEASURE K CLICK ON: MEASURE K).

    The Board Policies facilities section on "Architectural and Engineering Services" (9-11-14 Agenda pages 33-38) had new wording that specifically deleted six areas that the then current Board Policy required the Superintendent to ensure.  Number two on that deleted list specifically stated the Superintendent was to ensure:

    "Practices which might result in unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited (Government Code 4526)."

    Included at the end of the Board Policy is the note:
    "(Legal Reference next page)"

    Government Code 4526 is then referenced on the next page.

    When the deletion was brought to the attention of the Board during Public Comments from Surridge's  election opponent Attorney Florice Hoffman, Trustees Dr. Alexia Deligianni, Kathy Moffat and Diane Singer tried unsuccessfully to have the 17 deleted words in the original Board Policy that specifically listed unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited  reinserted into the new policy or delay adoption until district staff could investigate why the words were recommended to be deleted.

    Trustee Rick Ledesma argued that the deleted wording was not needed because if Measure K passed it would have "lot's of oversight".  Ledesma also questioned why it was brought forward by a community member running for the school board.

    Trustee Timothy Surridge stated that it was wasteful for the district staff and attorney to re-look at the Board Policy.

    Trustee Mark Wayland stated that he just read the item and that he understood it and that it was time to move forward because he did not agree to putting things off.

    President John Ortega appeared to revert to his pre-presidential and less statesman-like frustration declaring "Welcome to the political season"  as he declared the deleted words were brought up in the "9th hour" of the Board Policy adoption.

    In the end, the vote to reconsider the Board Policy that would eventually lead to the reinserting of the wording spelling out the illegal activity the Superintendent was to make sure were prohibited was defeated with the three women trustees Kathy Moffat, Diane Singer and Dr. Alexia Deligianni voting to move toward re-inserting the language into the Board Policy and the four male trustees- Rick Ledesma, Timothy Surridge, Mark Wayland and John Ortega voted against reconsidering reinserting "rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited" back into the Board Policy.

    That however was not the end of the controversy. Fast forward to October 16th.

    On the October 16, 2014 Agenda, Board President Ortega and Trustees Rick Ledesma and Timothy Surridge have added Item 12B (Agenda pages 6-8) a resolution on Measure K.

    The Agenda states that:
    "The Resolution provides assurance to the community that Measure K projects will be awarded on transparent open and competitive bidding practices..."

    The watchdog group the Greater Orange Community Organization* reacted to the resolution when it was published in the Agenda on Monday October 13 with a released statement ( CLICK ON: 293+ 155 Reasons). 

    The next day, Trustee Mark Wayland responded in the comment section of the post which was reposted here: (CLICK ON) WAYLAND

    Four Plans to reinstate elementary music program reviewed
    Also at the September 11, 2014 Board meeting, the OUSD Trustees heard details of four plans to reinstate the Elementary Music Program that was ended in 2008 due to the budget crunch of the Great Recession.

    Four models based on a year-long study process that the OUSD Administration has conducted were outlined. District-wide start-up costs ranged from $754,000 to $2.5 million depending on the plan make-up.

    Further study and work on the models and development of an Action Plan are planned for two Strategic Planning days over the next two months for the committee and a wider group of invited stakeholders.

    INSIDE the October 16, 2014 OUSD Board Meeting
    OUSD Board President John Ortega will be teleconferencing from a hotel in Sacramento.  the local watchdog group Greater Orange Community Organization (GOCO) noted in an email on Monday 10/15 that the OUSD released agenda did not specify where in the Sheraton Grand Sacramento Hotel the teleconference would be held. The California  Brown Act requires that the teleconference be publicly posted at the hotel and that it take place in a public area that the public has access.   GOCO indicated it would be following up with the hotel and California Aware  to insure the Brown Act is followed.  Any Board votes taken during an illegal meeting could be nullified.

    Other Board  Agenda items include:
    4B 1&2 Selling of  Riverdale and Killerfer properties
    4D Superintendent Review-Discussion of Evaluation Instrument
    12 A  Sale of Riverdale property
    12B Measure K Resolution (see above)
    12 D Community Foundation of Orange Presentation $4,000 donation to OUSD High School athletics

    Page 19- $17,050 for architectural drawings for upgrades to 3 portable classrooms at Richland H.S.
    Page 21-20- $429,170 in needed urgent repairs to 6 OUSD Schools
    Page 56-Resignation of Lori Davis, Director of Support Services

    NEXT OUSD BOARD MEETING Thursday, October 16, 2014

    CLOSED SESSION NOTE Time change 5:30 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 7:00 pm
    For the AGENDA-

    For more information call the OUSD Superintendent’s office at 714-628-4040
    For budgeting questions call Business Services at 714-628-4015

    ARCHIVAL Information and direct news can be found at:
    the Greater Orange News Service
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    and the
    Greater Orange News Service
    are independent news services of /O/N/N/

    Orange Net News


    Metro VIEWS: Trustee Mark Wayland

    Metro VIEWS
     service of the Greater Orange Community Organization :GoCo:

    ( EDITOR'S Note: The following response was posted to the 10/13/14 Metro VIEWS post below titled 293+155 reasons why Greater Orange needs a new OUSD Board majority [which can be seen under Comments]. It has been reproduced here from its original posting with a response from GOCO).

    by OUSD Trustee Mark Wayland

    Once again, cherry pick your facts, I love it, I love how you neglected to inform your readers that this was the third reading of these board policies, THE THIRD READING, get that. The girls on the board had 3 months to look at these policies and make changes, corrections, additions or subtractions.

    They waited until Ms. Hoffman could do a little political grandstanding to make a point. If your that concerned about Ethics, of which I think your lacking, Look to page 99 of the July agenda where it is discussed in detail, conflict of interest etc. Pages and pages of do's and don'ts.

    So please, if your going to bash the boys, myself included, get all of your facts straight. Also, the ladies were very concerned with the language on one page of the new board policies.

    I read that language, 3 times while it was being discussed, and no where  [sic] was it confusing. It was written in easy to understand English. That is what I was objecting to. These policies have been looked over by the state and the county legal department to insure we are doing everything correctly.

    In conclusion, if you want to bash me and the other board members who voted against delaying this language another few months, at least have the honesty to report everything. What [it] really tells me, is that their [sic] is a few board members that are not doing their homework. If I have a problem understanding what is in the agenda that I get one week before a board meeting, I call a staff member and get it cleared up. I don't wait until the board meeting to ask questions that I should know the answer to. 
    (EDITOR'S Note: The following response was from GOCO was sent by email to ONN-note ONN is the Communication Committee of GOCO ).

    by the Greater Orange Community Organization :GoCo:

    Mr. Wayland is correct- it was the third reading of the Board Policy- and the legal reason for the public multiple readings in our democracy is for the community and elected Board Trustees to give input during any of the multiple readings.   

    As Mr. Wayland should be aware, during any of the public readings it is correct procedure to question and make changes. That is why there are multiple readings during which time any Trustee- including as Mr. Wayland referred to them "The girls on the board" -could as Mr. Wayland stated "look at these policies and make changes, corrections, additions or subtractions".

    Which is exactly what Trustees Dr. Deligianni, Kathy Moffat and Diane Singer did-yes during the third reading-just as other changes had been proposed during the other two readings.

    In addition, perhaps if Mr. Wayland had read page 99 of the July 2014 Board Agenda that he referenced in his response as carefully as he had claimed to read the anti-corruption language questioned at the September 11th meeting he would realize that the referenced language in BB 9005B Ethics Policy Statement deals with Bond and Construction contracts...and not let's say for deals... like selling surplus property.

    Which leads one to wonder what does Mr. Wayland and his fellow trustees have against these 17 words enough to vote to delete them:
    "Practices which might result in unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited"

    Monday, October 13, 2014


    Metro VIEWS: 293+155 reasons

    Metro VIEWS
     service of the Greater Orange Community Organization :GoCo:
    293+155 reasons why Greater Orange needs a new OUSD Board majority
    by the Greater Orange Community Organization :GoCo:

    Last month at the September 11, 2014 OUSD School Board Meeting three Orange Unified Trustees, Dr. Alexia Deligianni, Kathy Moffat and Diane Singer fought to keep 17 words dealing with public corruption from being deleted from the Orange Unified School Board's Board Policies. 

    Those 17 anti-corruption words were simple enough...

    "Practices which might result in unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited"

    Regardless of the fact that the deleted words in Board Policy 1740A  was brought to the OUSD Board's attention during the public speaker section on the item from Attorney Florice Hoffman- the candidate running against Timothy Surridge in November- keeping the 17 words that list illegal activities in the Board Policy should not have been controversial.

    However, in their disingenuous explanations of why need, waste and cost caused them to vote to exclude those 17 words, Trustees John Ortega, Timothy Surridge, Rick Ledesma and Mark Wayland added insult to the Greater Orange Communities injury their votes caused.

    Today the October 14 Board Agenda was released to the public. In it is a 293 word resolution requested from Surridge, Ledesma and Ortega that shows how disingenuous their original explanations of why need, waste and cost caused them to vote to exclude those 17 anti-corruption words.

    At the September 11th Board Meeting:

          "Practices which might result in unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited"

          "Practices which might result in unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited"

          "Practices which might result in unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited"

          "Practices which might result in unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited"

    Now today, after an uproar from the Greater Orange Communities, the three Trustees who voted AGAINST reinserting 17 anti-corruption words NOW proposed a resolution in the October 16th Agenda that takes up three pages and includes a 293 word attorney written resolution plus a 155 word attorney written Clerk's Certificate to replace these 17 words:
     "Practices which might result in unlawful activity such as rebates, kickbacks, or other unlawful considerations are prohibited"

    This is just 293+155 reasons why Greater Orange needs a new majority on the OUSD Board Trustees.

    Views expressed on 
    Metro VIEWS

    are not necessarily the views of the Networks and Systems that these appear on. 

    Sunday, October 05, 2014


    Yes on Measure K

    Metro Views
     service of the Greater Orange Community Organization :GoCo:
    Yes on Measure K 
    is a "no brainier"
    by the Greater Orange Community Organization :GoCo:

    Voting "Yes" on Orange Unified School District's Measure K facilities Bond is a classic "no brainier" for any homeowners, residents and business owners in the Greater Orange Communities.  Just ask the opponents led by Villa Park Councilwomen Deborah Pauly.

    In Pauly's September "guest editorial" for the  Foothills Sentry, the outspoken Council women (who often speaks first then thinks later) acknowledged that the OUSD facilities need modernization. Pauly writes that "a real need for refurbishing and modernization"  exists. Pauly in her editorial against Measure K does not explain to the voters how her acknowledged "real need for refurbishing and modernization"  will ever get accomplished if voters follow her numerous flawed reasons on voting against Measure K.

    More importantly, Pauly  does not explain to the voters how Greater Orange property values are currently negatively impacted, nor does she explain to business owners of the problems that will come with a continued decline in  property values because of  substandard schools.  Documented tragic examples from across the nation exist of what happens to communities that go into a spiraling social-economic decline. In those declines, population flight due to declining schools takes place resulting in rapidly declining property values and an explosion of lower level businesses catering to an ever declining cliental buying the cheap housing.

    This is a vision of the Greater Orange Communities that Pauly and her Measure K opponents do not explain.

    18th Century architect's  "drawing board" 

    Unfortunately, Pauly in her editorial clearly is not concerned with the future.  In a simpleton phrase, the reactionary Pauly urges Measure K supporters and Orange Unified to "go back to the drawing board" .  Yes, the "drawing board" - that 18th Century multi-purpose desk mostly found in an 18th Century gentleman's study in the pre-industrial revolution era.

    So while other Orange County school districts have jumped into the 21st Century, Pauly urges our community to go backwards into the future. While Pauly's choice of idioms may bring a chuckle in the age of tablets that are computers, smart phones, smart boards, Google Glasses and Apple watches, it is no laughing matter for the future of the Greater Orange Communities.

    The age of the 18th Century drawing boards belong to the past as much as 20th Century chalkboards.  That is why the leadership of Orange Unified and a coalition of concerned community leaders have gone to the voters of Greater Orange to save their schools and save their communities.   

    That is what true leaders do.

    Unlike the past, the current open and transparent process for Measure K has been supported by a coalition of forward thinking community leaders from parents, homeowners, open-space advocates and from all sides of the political dialogue.

    Now it is time for the voters to follow those leaders into the future.

    When you vote by mail or vote in person on November 4th, the selfish no-brainer thing to do is vote to save your community's future.

    Vote Yes on Measure K. 

    for more information CLICK ON: MEASURE K

    Below are the 21st Century educational upgrades the $74 million at each OUSD high school will bring:

    Views expressed on
    Metro Views
    are not necessarily the views of the Networks and Systems that these appear on. 

    Tuesday, September 30, 2014


    OUSD to reveal Measure K plans

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD      
    a news service of
     Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    As Christensen and Pauly spar in the press...
    Measure K architectural plans take center stage at the OUSD Special Board Meeting  Thursday Oct 2nd

    The Orange Unified School Board will hold a Special Meeting Thursday October 2nd to review the newest architectural plans prepared for the four high schools.  Unlike the earlier artist renderings of high schools plans using a wish list of community stakeholders of each of the sites, the newest renderings will take into account the Measure K budget of $74 million allotted to each of OUSD's comprehensive high schools.

    In August of this year the OUSD Board authorized each of the master plan architectural firms ( one for each high school) to develop the drawings of what could be accomplished at each of the high schools with the funding from Measure K with the emphasis on educationally related modernization.

    In June, OUSD Trustee Dr. Alexia Deligianni cited the original renderings as one of her reasons she voted against placing Measure K on the November ballot.  Deligianni not only voted against placing the Bond on the ballot, she also joined with Measure K opponents led by Villa Park Councilwomen Deborah Pauly in signing the ballot argument against Measure K.

    In the September issue of the Foothills Sentry Pauly pens a "Guest Editorial" against Measure K.  While Pauly writes in the editorial that the OUSD buildings have " a real need for refurbishing and modernization"  she falsely blames that need on "OUSD placing a low priority" on modernization.  The controversial Pauly overlooks the truth of  OUSD being the only district in Orange County that has successfully modernized a handful of its 40 schools (including two of its five middle schools) in the last decade without having a bond.  For those schools, OUSD had the option for using matching state funding. That effort to update schools in a piecemeal fashion ended with the state budget crisis that resulted from the Great Recession. What remains true is that OUSD is the only major district in Orange County that has not passed a bond measure to update schools-causing student flight from local schools and declining property values across Greater Orange despite the high quality of education in OUSD schools.

    Pauly too takes aim at the stakeholder planning that involved each of the high school's own communities in an in-depth study  of the high schools. In the editorial Pauly ( who is not an attorney) also criticizes the  legal wording required in the Measure K ballot description as "copy and paste". She further criticizes the community stakeholders assessment of their schools as "disconnect between 'needs' and 'wants'" while she acknowledges that the stakeholders were specifically told to look at their schools without limits. Community members dreaming big about what 21st education looks like to the community apparently makes Pauly uncomfortable enough to call for Measure K's defeat. Or is it something else that Pauly isn't forthcoming about?

    In the same Foothills Sentry issue, in the Letters to the Editor section, OUSD Superintendent Michael Christensen defends the process OUSD took writing that "I would like to take this opportunity to clarify some misinformation circulating about the ongoing OUSD High School Facilities Master Plan/Measure K Bond process".  Christensen goes on to write about the very open and transparent collaborative process the community stakeholders at each of the high schools engaged in to produce not only plans for updated educational facilities, but also for community specific library, athletic and other student centered facilities needs.  Christensen writes the resulting Master Plans are "visioning documents that take into account each school community".  The Superintendent rightfully points out that the "community support was immense" for the Master Facilities Plans process, but he also acknowledges the concerns of some community members about the "overall costs of implementing such grand plans". He goes on to explain the OUSD Board did polling of the community at large to find what price the voters in the community would be comfortable in supporting for the modernization of their high schools. He writes that the poll reported that the community would support a $39 per $100,000 of assessed value.  His letter also states that the OUSD Board had authorized the architectural firms to draw up plans based on the Measure K budget  of a projected $74 million for each of the high schools so the community will be  fully informed of the plans before the election.  Those plans will be presented Thursday October 2nd.

    The Superintendent also noted that the OUSD Board has authorized setting aside double the current maintenance budget to maintain the high schools.  Critics like Pauly have called that figure low-despite the fact that it doubles the budget that has maintained the current schools as operational for well past their projected lifetime.

    What the Superintendent's letter does not address is the bang-for-the-buck return the Greater Orange property owners will reap in property values and equity should Measure K pass. That simple message on property  values is what the Measure K proponents have touted from the beginning as they have amassed a coalition of supporters that has crossed demographic, social and political lines.

    NEXT OUSD BOARD MEETING Thursday October 2, 2014

    OPEN SESSION ONLY NOTE Time change 6:00 pm

    For more information call the OUSD Superintendent’s office at 714-628-4040
    For budgeting questions call Business Services at 714-628-4015

    ARCHIVAL Information and direct news can be found at:
    the Greater Orange News Service
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    and the
    Greater Orange News Service
    are independent news services of /O/N/N/

    Orange Net News

    Tuesday, September 23, 2014



    Measure K gets Orange Firefighters endorsement
    C.A.R.E. the grass roots political organization backing OUSD's bond Measure K has announced that the City of Orange Firefighters Association have joined the broad based community coalition pushing for the passage of Measure K.

    It is the first ever endorsement of the association of a school related issue.

    C.A.R.E. released this statement from the Orange Firefighters:

    “We have never taken a position in a school district race or ballot measure, however, because we support safety within our schools and a positive environment for the education of our children, we are pleased to announce our endorsement of Measure K.”
    (Orange City Firefighters, September 16, 2014)

    Alleged White House intruder has Orange High School connection
    Omar Gonzalez, the 42 year old alleged intruder who authorities say scaled a White House fence with a knife and rounds of ammunition and made it into the White House  unlocked front door has connections to Orange High School.

    Gonzalez reportedly made it through the security just minutes after President Obama and his family had left the White House. After being apprehended by White House guards Gonzalez reportedly told them he wanted to give President Obama information about the "atmosphere collapsing" so Obama could warn the people.  

    Gonzalez had enlisted in the military in 1997 and was discharged in 2003. He then reenlisted in 2005 and served several tours in Iraq before reviving a disability discharge in 2012.

    Currently a Texas resident, Gonzalez  reportedly attended Orange High School in the early 1990's.

    For the OC Register story on Gonzalez and Orange High School CLICK ON: WHITE HOUSE

    Los  Angeles Register CLOSED
    The five month experiment by the new owners of the Orange County Register into Los Angeles County has ended with the LA Register being closed.

    For full details CLICK ON: LA REGISTER CLOSED

    Tuesday, September 16, 2014


    Republican leaders abandon schools

     Orange County Republican leaders abandon public schools and refuse to endorse OUSD's Ledesma and Surridge

    The OCPolitical  blog reported live on the 2nd Round endorsements from the Orange County Republican Party Central Committee meeting on Monday September 15.

    In a show of  ideological  purism,  the OC Republican Central Committee not only refused to endorse public school bond measures across Orange County- but recommended voting against the public school measures.

    Without offering an alternative way to rebuilding the public school infrastructure across Orange County after decades of neglect, the OC Republican Central Committee members voted to endorse "no" votes on  Fullerton Joint Union High School District's Measure I;  Anaheim Union High School District's Measure H; North Orange County Community College District's Measure J; and Orange Unified School District's Measure K.  

    Orange Unified Trustees Rick Ledesma and Timothy Surridge were recommended for the party endorsement by Orange Mayor Pro Tem Fred Whitaker and Orange City Councilman Denis Bilodeau. However, according to the OCPolitical Blog, the two trustees came under attack from Villa Park Councilwomen Deborah Pauly who claimed the two trustees ( who had voted for the Bond election) had promised her that they would vote against putting Measure K on the ballot. 

    In the end, a Central Committee voice vote failed to meet the 2/3 majority needed for the endorsements and the two failed to gain the parties endorsement. (Click on: OCP )

    At the August 18 OC Republican Endorsement Committee Pauly also tried to prevent Whitaker from being endorsed. Pauly pointed to Whitaker's support of  democrat Tita Smith for Orange Mayor. According to the OCPolitical blog, Pauly accused Whitaker of contributing to Smith's campaign and having a Smith for Mayor sign in his front yard. In  California local races are non-partisan. Whitaker received the committee's endorsement. (Click on AUG 18 OCR)

    Sunday, September 14, 2014


    UNO debuts to unite Orange

    United Neighborhoods of Orange debuts
     Eighteen neighborhoods and community advocate groups have taken a huge step in giving more voice to the citizens of the City of Orange by uniting under the umbrella group "United Neighborhoods of Orange" or UNO.
    Born out of the Peralta and Sully Miller land battles , the group made their debut at this year's  Orange International Street Fair.

    UNO is dedicated to property rights, open space and cultivating support for like-minded leaders.

    For more information visit their Facebook page : CLICK ON: UNO

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