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  • Wednesday, April 16, 2014

     

    OUSD Extends Admin Contracts

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD      
    a news service of
     Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    OUSD Administrators contracts renewed and revamped
    At the Thursday April 17, 2014 Orange Unified School Board meeting,  the OUSD Board of Trustees will vote to approve extending contracts for top OUSD administrators and "re-establish" the position of Deputy Superintendent.

    Action item 12 G (page 19) on the April 17th Agenda (online mistakenly dated April 11th on the bottom of each page) "re-establishes" the position of Deputy Superintendent and extends the two remaining Assistant Superintendent's contracts for three years. 

    The Deputy Superintendent position was originally re-created (after not being around since the 1970's) by former OUSD Superintendent Dr. Renae Dreier (herself a former Deputy Superintendent) in her April 2010 OUSD administrative reorganization. Drier appointed then 12 year OUSD veteran Assistant Superintendent Michael Christensen  as the first OUSD Deputy Superintendent. (Click on: DREIER). 

    In August 2011, Dreier retired and Christensen became the new OUSD Superintendent.  The position of Deputy Superintendent was then abolished.

    This week's Agenda Item 12 G states that "re-establishment" of the Deputy Superintendent position is a result of the combining of the Educational Services and Informational Technology departments into one department and because of new reporting requirements necessitated by budgeting compliance (for LCFF and LCAP) now being shared by the Educational Services and Human Resources departments.  The Item further states that current Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services Dr. Gunn Marie Hansen will be the new Deputy Superintendent. In March, Dr. Hansen was named by the Association of California School Administrators the 2014 California Central Office Administrator of the Year.  (Click on: HANSEN)

    It is not clear from the Agenda Item whether a new Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services will be hired.

    In the 2009-2010 school year, Michael Christensen's salary was $170,291.  The new Deputy Superintendent salary is listed in the Agenda as range 198 on the OUSD Leadership Salary Schedule (last column F ). That translates into  $16,474 a month. At 12 months ( for 248 days) the annual rate is $197,688. The three year contract runs from July 2014-June 2017. ( Click on CHRISTENSEN)

    The agenda item also extends the contracts of the Assistant Superintendent of Business Services and Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources to June 2017. The salary at range 151 on the OUSD Leadership Salary Schedule  goes from Column A $10, 356  a month ($124,272 annually) to Column F $13,032 a month ($156,384 annually). (Click on: SALARY )

    The contracts include a health benefit package, mileage at the current IRS rate (.56 per mile) and any future leadership pay hikes. In addition to the salary and benefit package, Dr. Hansen receives a doctoral stipend.

    Also on the April 17th Agenda is Information Item 13 D ( page 25) a report on Superintendent Michael Christensen's contract extension.  Continuing his open and transparent role as OUSD President, the item about the automatic renewal of the Superintendent's contract was  placed on the  by Trustee John Ortega as an informational item. 

    Under terms of Christensen's contract, his contract was automatically extended for three years until August 2017 since he was not notified by the OUSD Board six months before its expiration  that his contract would not be renewed or extended beyond its end date. The Board was aware of that deadline.

    The terms of the Superintendent's contract will remain the same, with the OUSD Board having the right to amend it.

    OU$D Bond WATCH 2014
    The April 17th Agenda includes Items 13A and 13B providing more information moving toward a 2014 OUSD Facilities Board.

    Item 13 A has long-time Old Towne Orange real estate agent Dr. John Aust, owner of John Aust Real Estate Company and an Orange Chamber leader presenting information on the relationship of passing a school bond on the value of homes.

    Dr. Aust also operates CP Appraisers from his real estate office and has been hired as an expert witness for court room real estate appraisals.
    (Click on REAL ESTATE)

    Item 13 B has information on Bonds in regards to the changes from the November 2000 Proposition 39 - the Schools Facilities Local Vote Act of 2000. That constitutional amendment reduced the required vote to pass a school bond from 66% Yes to a 55% Yes. Before the passage of Prop 39 60% of school bonds passed in California. After its passage lowering the vote threshold, 75% of  California school bonds pass.

    In addition, information on the duties and activities of the required Citizen's Bond Oversight Committee will be covered and the do's and don'ts of public monies spending in Bond campaign.

    The April meeting comes after four highly successful "on-the road" meetings at the four OUSD high schools proposed by Board President Ortega. 

    In an out-of-character ill-timed middle of OUSD Spring Break Week release, OUSD Superintendent Michael Christensen released an OUSD ListServe message (in letter form) to the community on the progress being made by OUSD on the Bond. The largely missed letter because of the poor timing states that a May report on the Bond polling and a tentatively scheduled June vote for a Bond measure (based on that poll) by the OUSD Board is the timing expected.
    (Click on LETTER )

    INSIDE the April Agenda
    Closed Session Item 4 D
    Hiring a new Administrative Director of Student and Community Services (Click on SCS) http://www.orangeusd.org/scs/
    Action Item 12 A
    Acceptance of the initial disbursal of  $265,000 from the Maxine Huber Trust.  Huber was a long time Orange resident.
    Action Item 12 B
    Acceptance of the highest bid to sell the OUSD Killerfer Site
    Consent Item (Page 36)
    Announcement of the retirement on June 27, 2014 of Portola Middle School Principal Deborah Backstrom.

    NEXT OUSD BOARD MEETING Thursday April 17, 2014
    Next OUSD Board Meeting -
    CLOSED SESSION- 5:30 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 7:00 pm
    For AGENDA-CLICK ON: 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 http://greaterorange.blogspot.com/
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    and the
    Greater Orange News Service
    are independent news services of /O/N/N/
    Orange Net News

    “Greater Orange's TRUSTED independent news for over 12 years"

    Tuesday, March 25, 2014

     

    OUSD Board's Villa Park HS "on-the-road"

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD      
    a news service of
     Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    Inside the March 13, 2014 OUSD Board Meeting-El Modena

    The Orange Unified Board of Education held another one of  their highly acclaimed "on-the-road" Board meeting on Thursday March 13, 2014 at El Modena High School  . The OUSD Board and El Modena community will be previewed the El Modena High School Needs Assessment Plan.

    Attending the meeting were all the OUSD Trustees including Kathy Moffat who was suppose to be teleconferencing from a private residence in the city of Crofton Maryland.  The Brown Act specifically states that the teleconferencing place must be a "public place" with public access .

    Moffat had announced that she returned to California for the birth of  two grandchildren. She stated that she had planned to teleconference because of a meeting in Washington D.C. she was to attend. The address listed on the March 13th Agenda had Moffat teleconferencing from a private home at 1566 Farlow Ave Crofton, Maryland. The private residence is 22 miles from Washington D.C.

    Votes taken at a meeting  in violation of the Brown Act could be invalidated. That could create problems considering the importance of many of the agenda items that were approved that evening. The Trustees votes to approve included: the sale of the Walnut site; the legally required Second Interim Budget and Fund Transfer Authority;  the policy on allowing emergency defibrillators; and the hiring of a firm to conduct polling for the planned 2014 OUSD High School Bond measure. 

    In theory -all of those votes could have been invalidated by an illegal meeting.

    Orange Net News was alerted by it's parent organization the Greater Orange Community Group that the local watchdog group had contacted the state-wide Brown Act watchdog group Californian's Aware for possible action over possible Brown Act violations.

    Orange Unified has admittedly made Brown Act mistakes with past teleconferencing. Orange Unified has both won and lost other Brown Act related court cases in the past.

    Villa Park High School Facilities pl next up
    After three successful marathon "on-the-road" meetings, the last meeting to review the Villa Park H.S. facilities master plan promises to be a short meeting with only a few items. In Closed Session the Trustees will hire a new high school assistant principal. Cero Villa Middle School will have its turn at wooing the trustees and audience after OUSD's other middle schools gave rousing  State of the Middle School presentations at the three other "on-the-road" meetings. Finally, the Villa Park community will be treated to the architects master facilities plan for Villa Park High School.

    That's it. No other business except OUSD's unique two Public Comment opportunities are on the agenda.  

    NEXT OUSD BOARD MEETING March 27, 2014
    Next OUSD Board Meeting -Villa Park H.S. Cafeteria
    CLOSED SESSION- 5:30 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 6:00 pm
    For AGENDA-CLICK ON:  VP MEETING

    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 http://greaterorange.blogspot.com/
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    and the
    Greater Orange News Service
    are independent news services of /O/N/N/
    Orange Net News

    “Greater Orange's TRUSTED independent news for over 12 years"

    Tuesday, March 18, 2014

     

    C.A.R.E. group to meet for 2014 Bond

      OU$D Bond WATCH 2014
    a news service of
     Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    OUSD 2014 Bond group invites community to meeting


    The Orange Unified School Board "on-the-road" community meetings held at the OUSD High Schools have surpassed all expectations.  Proposed by Board President John Ortega, the meetings have steadily drawn bigger and bigger crowds at each of the three high schools that have hosted the meetings to discuss proposed facilities upgrades at each of OUSD's four comprehensive high schools.

    A far cry from the almost secretive approach of the previous two OUSD Bond attempts, this time around the open call for supporters has created a community-wide momentum that seems to have even shocked some of the OUSD Trustees- in a good way.

    Part of that momentum has been a 2014 Bond supporting grassroots community coalition  organization  that has developed independent of OUSD efforts- C.A.R.E. -"Community Advancement through Renovation for Education"  .

    First meeting at organizers homes, CARE has recently begun having meetings at Santiago Charter Middle School.

    The next meeting is at 6:30 pm on Thursday  March 20th  at Santiago Charter Middle School. The organizers are inviting  the community to attend and get involved to learn more about the momentum towards having a 2014 OUSD Facilities Bond on the November 2014 ballot.

    For more information you can visit the C.A.R.E. Facebook page: CLICK ON: CARE .

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    Wednesday, March 12, 2014

     

    Surridge vs Free Enterprise

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD      
    a news service of
     Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    Surridge belittles free-enterprise profits
    as OUSD discusses Peralta and a Bond
    After being again confronted by Save the Peralta Property  supporters at the "on-the-road" February 13, 2014 Orange Unified School District Board meeting, the Surridge Majority of the OUSD Board went on the offensive at a meeting a week later when the OUSD Board met on February 20, 2014 OUSD at Canyon H.S.

    On February 13, 2014 at Orange High School, the OUSD Board members got an earful from the close-by Peralta neighborhood residents including Shelly Lumus who shouted loud and clear during her 3 minutes of Public Comments "Don't Sell Peralta" several times at the Board. Lumus went on to chastise the Board that they have offered  no valid reason to sell Peralta adding "You are not doing it for us" and reasoning the Board majority had other motives for selling the prime property.   The most the Board Majority could do was something that had never been done in public comments before, they read a text message. According to Trustee Mark Wayland who read the text message outloud- the author supported selling  the Peralta site using the same unfounded reasoning that the OUSD Board majority has been circulating in the community-that they seek to  sell all the surplus  properties because  the community will not support a Bond if the district owns property.

    Trustee Singer implored her fellow Board members to refrain from  continuing to connect the two issues-the surplus properties issue and the all but approved 2014 Bond issue. By the Canyon H.S. meeting the following week, it became clear that the  Surridge Majority intended to continue do just that as they went on the offensive.

    Peralta supporters again showed up the next week at the Canyon High School meeting- however the Surridge Board Majority was prepared.  This time, members of the audience spoke in favor of selling the  surplus property.  One speaker read from a prepared text that mimicked almost word-for-word arguments the Surridge Majority has used to try and tie their goal of a 2014 Bond to the make-believe fantasy of the desire of OUSD voters not to approve a Bond without selling all the OUSD surplus property. 

    One surprise local Anaheim Hills supporter who spoke in favor of selling the surplus property was former OUSD Trustee Lisa Smith. As usual however, Smith had her own independent ideas about the surplus property. In her trademark sermon-inspired soliloquy-style policy statement- the real-life preacher and former trustee reminded the current Board that the zoning and any eventual development of the sites was a city issue-not a school district issue. Smith reasoned that the duty of trustees was not as landlords or real estate agents, but with the duty of using district resources for education. 

    Smith's idea was in a way a twist on the exact argument of the three OUSD  Trustees, Kathy Moffat, Diane Singer and Dr. Alexia Deligianni have argued as reasoning to keep Peralta- it is an educational  resource. The difference is the current trustees view that resource is to be kept for future educational purposes. With Moffat-having technical difficulties in a teleconferencing call from a Sacramento hotel lobby,  the champion of that future outlook was unable to rebut Smith's argument.

    It was however later in the Canyon H.S. meeting that Greater Orange got a look at how Timothy Surridge's has personalized the Peralta  issue into what appears a personal mission to sell the former school site since losing his pet Fairfield development deal.

    Surridge's contempt for his Peralta opponents and their allies was in full display as a stunned Board meeting audience watched Surridge's  Joseph McCarthy-like-questioning of small business owner Ken Hawkins after his presentation to the OUSD Trustees.

    Hawkins, a co-owner of the Super Sports business that currently leases the Peralta Site, was publicly belittled by Surridge over and over for the Super Sport free-enterprise business making a profit while providing a needed service to the Greater Orange community.

    Hawkins (who Surridge pointed out had his lease running out next year) was presenting an idea to the OUSD Board as Informational Item 12 B on the OUSD Agenda (page 20) . Hawkins was proposing to bring other educational facilities like Olive Crest (CLICK ON) which currently rents space (and uses the faculties)  at the Super Sports site to provide more educational components to Super Sports complex.

    In an Marxist-era-like rant,  Surridge several times sarcastically questioned the business owner about making money and profits from the Super Sports business.  A surprised, yet respectful Hawkins reminded Surridge that the business made money and paid rent to the district for the site it leased- to which Surridge pounced  again taking Hawkins to task again for "making money" for years. But Surridge was just getting started.

    Surridge then lashed out at Hawkins over attending a Save Peralta Rally that was held the Saturday before at Super Sports site where Hawkins had introduced his idea to the neighborhood.

    Like a prosecuting lawyer Surridge's questions then took Hawkins to task for being one of the proposed developers of apartments for the Peralta Site when the Board asked for apartment lease ideas.  Surridge then badgered Hawkins for a business plan and continued to accuse Hawkins of running a business and making money.  Surridge then revealed that he was privy to a 45 minute conversation between Hawkins and Foothills Sentry Publisher Richard Callahan.  Surridge stated that Callahan had told the Trustee that Hawkins was unable to provide Callahan with specific plans on financing and said that he had told Surridge that Hawkins was unprofessional.

    As Hawkins attempted to answer Surridge's barrage of questions, Hawkins was berated and dismissed with every answer he provided. Trustee Singer tried to interrupt Surridge's interrogation antics  with a parliamentary point-of-order as a stunned audience and district personal watched the spectacle play out. Singer expressed shock at the tenor of the questions to a community member who was simply making a point stating that community members come to Board meeting to be heard- "not to get in trouble".  Singer then apologized to Mr. Hawkins for the treatment she had just witnessed.

    Then Dr. Deligianni in the strongest words she has ever uttered at a Board meeting spoke. A visibly shocked Deligianni stated that she had "never seen someone spoken to with such contempt"  adding that Hawkins "deserves respect" as a community member.

    Ortega, who up to this point has offered an even handed approach to Board discussions during this tenure as Board President appeared to try and rescue Surridge as he stated that Hawkins had provided only this verbal presentation to the Board and provided no advance proposal to the Board. Ortega reasoned that the Board now had an opportunity to ask questions.

    Trustee Rick Ledsma then too took Hawkins to task telling the business owner  he had provided nothing to the Board in writing, not a draft or business plan.

    An angry Surridge then looked at Hawkins and again took the business owner to task for "rallying" the people before giving the Board a chance to hear the proposal and accused the business owner of  "having no plan" and a "sweetheart lease".

    OUSD Board votes to sell Killerfer and Riverdale Sites
    with Walnut site up next at the March 13, 2013 meeting
    After voting to sell the Killerfer site at the February 13th  Orange H.S. meeting and the Riverdale site at the February 20th Canyon H.S. meeting,  the OUSD Board will vote on the next surplus property to sell-the Walnut site.  The OUSD Board approved the sale for Riverdale for $12.9 million. The asking price for the Killerfer site was listed in the Agenda at $2.9 million. Those prices are tentatively proposed and approved in a Closed Session Board meetings with realty experts-then voted on by Trustees in public session.

    Except in the case of the Killerfer site.  The small site which sits in the up-in-coming Train Depot/ Chapman University Law School area of the Traffic Circle neighborhood is considered a fairly attractive property.  However, things took a strange twist on the way to the sale being approved at the February 13th Board Meeting.

    While Surridge continues to tout sales of unrelated surplus property in other school districts  as the means of quoting  astronomical figures of the worth of OUSD surplus property, the self-anointed OUSD Realtor tried to publicly micromanage the sale price of the  Killerfer property by asking for a lower  price. After the OUSD Board had in Closed Session gone with the what experts had said was the fair market value of the property, Surridge made an amendment to drop the price $500,000 to $1.9 million. As the real estate experts present were put on the spot to defend their valuation, Trustee Mark Wayland - a usual Surridge ally put some sanity into the conversation by noting that the free market would determine the value of the land. The Surridge amendment to drop the price by $500,000 was defeated 3- 4 with Wayland joining Deligianni, Moffat and Singer in voting against the amendment. Ledesma and Ortega joined Surridge in voting Yes to drop the price.

    At this Thursday's  March 13, 2014 meeting, the Walnut site will be the next property the Board will vote to sell. The going price from the true real estate experts is $12.9 million.

    C.A.R.E introduces itself to Greater Orange
    As dozens of  stakeholders at both the Orange H.S.  and Canyon H.S. meetings addressed the OUSD Trustees asking for a November 2014 Bond, representatives of a group hoping to take the lead in supporting the Bond introduced themselves during public comments- C.A.R.E. (Community Advancement through Renovation for Education).

    The group has a FACEBOOK page (CLICK ON: CARE) and is currently working on a website.  It will hold its first meeting on March 20, 2014 with the place to be announced.

    Inside the March 13, 2014 OUSD Board Meeting-El Modena
    The OUSD Board's next stop on their highly acclaimed "on-the-road" Board meeting will be Thursday March 13, 2014 at El Modena High School  starting at 6:00 pm. The OUSD Board and El Modena community will be previewing the El Modena High School Needs Assessment Plan . (To access the plan CLICK on EL MO ).

    Moffat "private residence" teleconferencing could pose problems for OUSD with Brown Act
    Does 1566 Forlow in Crofton Maryland  look like the Brown Act "public place"?
    One again, Kathy Moffat will be teleconferencing to participate in the OUSD Board meeting. This time from a private residence at 1566 Forlow Ave in the city of Crofton, Maryland.  The Brown Act specifically states that the teleconferencing place must be a "public place" with public access. While the agenda does note the address, no telephone number or other information for the private residence is provided to the public on the agenda.




    Any votes taken at a meeting  in violation of the Brown Act could be invalidated. That could lead to problems considering the importance of many of the agenda items including the sale of the Walnut site, the legally required Second Interim Budget and Fund Transfer Authority,  the policy on allowing emergency defibrillators  plus important numerous consent items that are too numerous to mention. 

    In theory -all of this could be invalidated by an illegal meeting.

    Orange Net News was alerted by it's parent organization the Greater Orange Community Group that this week the local watchdog group contacted the state-wide Brown Act watch group Californian's Aware to make them aware of the possible violation and for clarification".

    Orange Unified has admittedly made Brown Act mistakes with past teleconferencing. Orange Unified has won and lost other Brown Act related court cases in the past. This week's question is are the Trustees willing to risk another Brown Act loss?

    For information on 1566 Forlow private residence in Crofton Maryland CLICK ON: PRIVATE HOME

    NEXT OUSD BOARD MEETING March 13, 2014
    Next OUSD Board Meeting -El Modena Multi-purpose Room
    CLOSED SESSION- 5:30 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 6:00 pm
    For AGENDA-CLICK ON: 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 http://greaterorange.blogspot.com/
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    and the
    Greater Orange News Service
    are independent news services of /O/N/N/
    Orange Net News

    “Greater Orange's TRUSTED independent news for over 12 years"

    Wednesday, February 19, 2014

     

    OUSD's own Realty Reality show continues

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD      
    a news service of
     Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    OUSD's own Realty Reality show continues....
    Peralta site Super Sports Golf and Recreation Center owners to address Trustees on proposal for long term lease tied to education
    In its second "On the Road" meeting this month on Thursday, February 20, 2014,  this time at Canyon High School, the Orange Unified School District School Board will hear from one of the owners of Super Sports Golf and Recreation Center located at the former Peralta School Site.

    Information Item 12 B (Agenda page 20) reports that Kent Hawkins, a partner of the Super Sports Golf and Recreation Center, has requested to present to the OUSD Board "an updated idea for leasing the property on an ongoing basis".  The presentation will be  a proposal to the OUSD Trustees about a new idea about combining sports and education at the Peralta Site. 

    Information in the Agenda about the proposal includes "making it a more educational oriented facility while still keeping the sports" . The business which currently leases the Peralta site is proposing to change the name to "Super Sports and Education Center".  The Agenda information also includes this description  " a new idea, where several schools can have their sports as a shared resource"  and " this will help us pay the district additional rent over time".

    Earlier in the same meeting, the Closed Session Agenda 4B again includes the Peralta Site as part of the Closed Session discussions with the purpose of "Instructions to negotiators will concern items and conditions for possible sale of sites" .

    OUSD Board to approve Riverdale site sale for $15.9 million
    After the February 20th Closed Session and before the Information Item Super Sport presentation, the OUSD Trustees will vote to put the former 11.5 acre Riverdale School site up for sale for $15.9 million dollars. The resolution includes the exemption from environmentally sensitive areas as outlined in  the California Environmental Quality Act  (CLICK ON) 15206(B) 4.

    Action Item 13 A ( Agenda pages 3-15)  on the February 20, 2014 agenda includes a Resolution to sell the City of Anaheim  site and consider counteroffer to the stated price.

    The resolution also declares that no public agencies (which would have first choice in buying the land) had expressed any interest in acquiring the land.

    The OUSD Board voted to close Riverdale at the height of the Great Recession in December 2009.  The school closed in June of 2010 at an estimated savings of $349,000 annually to the cash strapped district. In October of 2013, OUSD Trustees officially voted the Riverdale site to be surplus property. 

     Discussion of  Automatic External Defibrillators on Agenda
    On  August 7, 2013 fourteen year-old Canyon High School student Mitchell Cook collapsed and died during football practice at the Anaheim Hills high school. 

    As a result of Cook's death and other reported national high school related deaths, in October 2013, the OUSD Board directed staff after a presentation on AED's to report back with a policy for their potential use.

    In a bit of fate, Information item 12B and 12 C (Agenda pages 16-19) on Automatic External Defibrillators (AED) will also be discussed at the Canyon High School meeting on February 20, 2014 meeting.

    The information item on the progress and change to the Board Policy's to allow AED's are included in theses two agenda items.

    Lobby of the Hilton Arden West -site of teleconference
    Kathy Moffat to Teleconference during the meeting
    Trustee Kathy Moffat will be participating in the February 20, 2014 meeting from a hotel lobby in Sacramento.  The California open meeting law called the Brown Act requires that when a meeting is held using teleconferencing, all votes must be done by roll call.

    Other Brown Act Requirements about teleconferencing include:
    INSIDE the February 20, 2014 Agenda
    Item 12 A- and the reason to hold the February 20th meeting at Canyon High School is to update the Master Planning on the High School Needs Assessment for Canyon High School.

    For an UPDATE on the Canyon H.S. Master Facilities Master Plan CLICK ON: CANYON.

    NEXT OUSD BOARD MEETING February 20, 2014
    Next OUSD Board Meeting -Canyon High School Cafeteria
    CLOSED SESSION- 5:00 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 6:00 pm
    For AGENDA-CLICK ON: 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 http://greaterorange.blogspot.com/
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    and the
    Greater Orange News Service
    are independent news services of /O/N/N/
    Orange Net News

    “Greater Orange's TRUSTED independent news for over 12 years"

    Monday, February 10, 2014

     

    OUSD votes $50,000 in educational tax money for PR

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD      
    a news service of
     Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    "IMAGINE"  that!
    OUSD Board votes 4-3 to spend $50,000 in educational tax funds for public relations 
    Just as the Great Recession starts to end and educational tax monies are again flowing  into OUSD, at the January 23 2014 Orange Unified School District Board Meeting the four previously "fiscal conservative" male OUSD Trustees started a new taxpayer funded spending spree by voting to spend $50,000 of educational tax monies on a public relations firm against the votes and advice of the three female OUSD Board members.

    The former self-described fiscally conservative OUSD Board President John Ortega, Trustees Timothy Surridge,  Mark Wayland and Rick Ledesma all joined together to vote to approve OUSD spending $50,000 in educational tax funds for a public relations firm for a purpose not exactly clear.

    Wayland, who characterized the $50,000 as a "trial run" said that the district was getting "beat up locally and nationally in the press" and questioned "Where do people turn to get the truth?".  Wayland characterized  spending the $50,000 in educational tax funds as "a good investment". 

    Voting against using the  $50,000 of educational tax money for a public relations firm were the three women trustees: self-described fiscal conservative trustee Dr. Alexia Deligianni; and pro-education trustees Villa Park's Kathy Moffat and Anaheim Hills Dianne Singer.

    Singer stated her vote against spending $50,000 in educational tax funds on PR was that the educational tax monies would be better spent on a variety of still needed educational priorities.  Singer stated the district had a long way to go in restoring educational program cuts from the Great Recession and reasoned that spending $50,000 of educational funds on PR was not a high priority.

    Kathy Moffat was against the PR spending because of her concern about the "timing" of spending $50,000 of educational funding for a public relations firm so close to an election cycle. Surridge and Ledesma are two trustees who are up for re-election in November 2014 and have been initially targeted by community open space advocates for leading efforts to lease the Peralta site for a high density apartments and now are leading the efforts to sell Peralta and other OUSD properties across the Greater Orange Communities to developers.  If either trustee were to lose in November the balance of power on the Board would shift away from the current OUSD pro-development majority of which they both are part.



    KCOMM Account Exec Daniel Moorlach
         The PR firm hired for the $50,000 in educational tax funds is KCOMM.  One of KCOMM's account executives is Daniel Moorlach, son of  Orange County Supervisor and declared Congressional candidate John Moorlach.

    Ledesma at first reasoned that he was in favor of spending $50,000 in educational taxpayer monies on public relations because it could be used to sustain the "buzz" in the community about supporting a possible OUSD High School Bond.  After the Ledesma "bond buzz" comments,  Dr. Deligianni quickly asked OUSD Superintendent Michael Christensen about district money being spent on Bond publicity. Christensen confirmed that once a Bond is authorized by the OUSD Trustees, no educational tax dollars can be spent on Bond related publicity.  Ledesma quickly thanked the Superintendent for correcting him. Ledesma also characterized the $50,000 in educational taxpayer money as  "just a drop in the bucket".

    Moffat also reminded the Board that the "Bond Buzz" referred to by Ledesma was created by the meetings held for the High School Master Facilities Plan.  Moffat noted that each of the planning firms had the responsibility for the pubic relations related to the Facilities Plan as part of their contracts. 

    The fear of using the $50,000 in educational tax funds ending up for "political PR"  is not a far fetched theory.  Another OUSD School Board that was "beat up locally and nationally in the press"  was the eventually recalled Reactionary Jacobson Board of the late 1990's and early 2000's.  That Board had an in-house publicity director ( "Information Officer" ) named Judy Frutig.  As members of the OUSD Board tried to manipulate the "message" of politically motivated lawsuits and the community recall against them, the moves of the Trustees continued to be national news. In response, the community organized their own communication structure- then called the Citizen's News Network  (predecessor of Orange Net News).

    Unable to contain and drive the narrative against an upstart citizen's community news organization and unwilling to do what a micromanaging school board ordered her to, Frutig was unceremoniously fired. Frutig then joined the community opposition to the Jacobson Majority and provided game-changing  information to the opposition working on recalling four trustees.  Frutig also joined a lawsuit against the Board's "political" firings. Those lawsuits were eventually settled out of court after the recall was successful. 

    OUSD Board Meetings go on the Road
    Also at the January 23 2014 Board Meeting, the OUSD Board voted 7-0 to approve President John Ortgea's plan to hold OUSD Board meetings at the district's four comprehensive high schools to discuss and review the Facilities Master plans for the school hosting the meeting. 

    The first of the 2014 On the Road OUSD Board meetings will be held at Orange High School mulit-purpose room this Thursday February 13. The Closed Session will take place at 5:00 pm with the Open Session moved up 1 hour to 6:00 pm.

    Ortega's proposal to hold the meetings at the high schools was widely applauded throughout the Greater Orange Communities.

    For information on the On the Road meetings CLICK ON: Traveling Board Meetings


    OUSD February 13th Agenda has a resolution to sell property
    At the January 23 meeting two community members spoke during the Pubic Comment sections about the possibility of selling the Peralta site to developers.

    Long-time OUSD resident Jan Meyers spoke during Pubic Comments section before the Closed Session opposing the selling of the Peralta Site. That session included a discussion on selling "surplus property". 

    Later in the Public Comment section of the Open Session, Jason Schubert addressed the Board again opposing the sale of the Peralta site and acknowledging the growing coalition across the community of Open Space advocates.

    Once again, selling the OUSD surplus property will again be on the OUSD Agenda on February 13, 2014 meeting. Again in the Closed Session, the Trustees will be discussing the Killerfer Sites, the Peralta site, the Riverdale site and the Walnut site.  The Open Session Action Item 13 A also includes a Resolution again authorizing the sale of the Killerfer site.

    INSIDE the February 13 Board Agenda
    Closed Session 4 B-  ( Agenda page 1) More discussions on selling Peralta and other properties

    Action Item 12 A- (Agenda page 4)  Facilities Master Plan Update for Orange High School

    Action Item 13 B- (Agenda page 23-24)  Board Policy against electronic cigarettes

    NEXT OUSD BOARD MEETING February 13, 2014
    Next OUSD Board Meeting -Orange High School Multi-purpose Room
    CLOSED SESSION- 5:00 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 6:00 pm
    For AGENDA-CLICK ON: 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 http://greaterorange.blogspot.com/
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    are independent news services of /O/N/N/
    Orange Net News
    “Greater Orange's TRUSTED independent news for over 12 years"



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