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  • Tuesday, January 17, 2012


    Surridge elected Orange Unified Board President

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    a news service of Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    Independent insight into OUSD

    Surridge elected Orange Unified Board President
    One year after being elected to the Orange Unified School Board by defeating former trustee Kimberly Nichols, Trustee Tim Surridge was elected as Orange Unified School Board President on a split 4-2-1 vote. Surridge was nominated by John Ortega just a moment before Trustee Diana Singer nominated Trustee Dr. Alexia Deligianni for the position. On the vote for Surridge, Deligianni abstained, with Trustees Kathy Moffat and Diana Singer voting No. Surridge voted for himself and was joined by Trustees John Ortega, Mark Wayland and outgoing OUSD Board President Rick Ledesma giving Surridge the majority vote. Deligianni was then elected Board Vice President on a 7-0 vote and Wayland was again voted Board Clerk on a 7-0 vote.

    In parting comments, Ledesma reflected that he had started the year with Superintendent Dr. Renae Dreier, and was ending the year with Superintendent Michael Christensen, praising both of them. He went on to then describe the OUSD Board’s imitative to address the district’s surplus properties as a source of income stating the district was looking to “maximize value" of the under and unused parcels it owns. He also warned that some “media and gadflies may not like some of these decisions” and stated he was committed to getting value from those properties (see item 12 C below).

    For his part, new President Tim Surridge reflected on the California School Boards Association annual convention, this year held in San Diego. Surridge stated he took the keynote speaker’s message of telling positive stories of local schools to heart. He pledged to spend the year of his presidency telling positive stories about Orange Unified.

    OUSD Budget certified Positive
    It wasn’t long before the first case of positive news was heard. OUSD Assistant Superintendent of Business Services Joe Sorrera reported that despite the now all but certain State of California budget “trigger cuts”, OUSD would be able to absorb the $8.1 million in anticipated revenue shortage without further program cuts by extending the present cost-saving measures already in place.

    Later, OUSD Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources reported on the required R-2 Administrative Ration report required by the State of California of every school district. The report is to make sure that school districts are compliant with mandated administrative to teacher acceptable ratios. OUSD, which over a 5 year period has had the lowest ratio of any Orange County Unified District, continued to post a very low administrative to teacher ratio in the current report. Allowed 8 certificated administrators per 100 credentialed teachers under the current formula, OUSD would be allowed about 87 certificated administrators. Currently (not including percentages of the two charter schools and federally funded positions) OUSD has 66 certificated administrators, falling far below the allowable number and ratio.

    INSIDE the January 19 OUSD Agenda
    Closed Session Agenda Item 4A: discussion of Meadows Construction Services Inc. v Orange Unified School District. In 2008 the firm had been awarded the modernization contract for Sycamore Elementary School. In 2009, two phases (#5 & 6) were terminated by OUSD decreasing the contract and days of constriction.

    Closed Session Agenda Item 4 D: Discussion of the Superintendent’s evaluation instrument

    Action Item 12 B
    ( Agenda page 5): in dealing with the ‘trigger cuts” OUSD is requesting a continuation of the waivers for two more years to the California Education Code it received for the school years 2010-2011 and 2011-2012. The annual savings to the district is projected to be $1.9 million annually.

    Action Item 12 C (Agenda page 6): Public Hearing on waiver to sell or lease Killerfer site surplus property site. OUSD is seeking a waiver from state requirements outlining the process for selling or leasing property that a district may not receive the highest price. OUSD is seeking to determine “what constitutes the most desirable bid, set its own terms and conditions, and remove the requirement that oral bids be accepted”.

    Former Superintendent Godley’s Retirement Bonus
    Running total (beginning 8/2008)

    * The Godley Retirement Bonus presented here is an estimate of the amount in “bonus retirement” accrued since the Superintendent’s retirement on 6/30/08 using a 6% lifetime formula calculated here at $1210 a month since 8/08. The actual retirement plan the former OUSD Superintendent opted to take is not public information and the figures presented are only as an estimate of the taxpayer costs after the OUSD trustees voted against an amendment to exclude Godley from the retirement program. The on-going estimated figure is presented as a reminder to the community of the high cost in educational tax dollars the OUSD Board vote to allow the former Superintendent to participate in the 6% retirement incentive cost the OUSD education community in tax dollars. Godley retired from OUSD on June 30, 2008 after he worked for the school district for a little over five years.

    NEXT BOARD MEETING January 19, 2012
    Next OUSD Board Meeting Thursday Jan 19, 2012, 2011 -OUSD BOARD ROOM
    CLOSED SESSION- 5:30 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 7:00 pm
    For more information call the OUSD Superintendent’s office at 714-628-4040
    For budgeting questions call Business Services at 714-628-4015
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE Independent insight into OUSD
    is an independent news service of /O/N/N/
    “Independent Local Insight”

    WATCH FOR Orange Net News newest investigative series:

    Orange Unified’s Grade Inflation Out of the Box or Out of Control
    Part 2

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