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  • Friday, June 20, 2014


    SPECIAL REPORT: Politics or Misconduct?

    Politics or Misconduct?
    Orange Unified Superintendent's evaluation continues for June 23 Special Meeting

    Just 2 weeks away from  approving placing a 2014 Facilities Bond on the November 2014 ballot-a process that has been over a year in the making involving thousands of community members- and the Orange Unified School Board  has dramatically turned its attention to continuing the "evaluation" of  OUSD Superintendent Michael Christensen for a Special Monday night meeting on June 23, 2014.

    The Special Meeting dealing again with the Superintendent's evaluation takes place amid rampant rumors throughout the Greater Orange Communities over what is going on in these ongoing Board of Trustee Closed Sessions "evaluations" of the popular OUSD Superintendent.

    Trustee Timothy Surridge
    Sources in Greater Orange point to a scenario of ultra conservative OUSD Trustees trying to sabotage the 2014 Bond process (even as they give lip service to supporting a Bond) after they were unable to connect the sale of the Peralta Property to developers in return for placing the Bond on the ballot. Add in a November trustee election for four OUSD Trustee seats and all indications point to politics -not education- as the controlling factor over the continued "evaluation" drama.

    As time tics down to the Bond ballot placement deadline of August 8th, and with a Special Meeting now scheduled  for June 30, 2014 for the OUSD Trustees to vote to just place a Bond issue on the November ballot for voters to decide, clearly losing OUSD Superintendent Michael Christensen for any reason this Monday would be a deathly blow to the Bond efforts.   

    With specific legal requirements needed to remove the Superintendent, lacking any substantiated evidence of misconduct the whole scheme could actually backfire on the OUSD Trustees. With the Superintendent  just signing a three year contract- a costly contract buyout, then the costly legal fight that most certainly will result in his removal, as well as the loss of the opportunity  for a 2014 Bond  would cause a catastrophic backlash from the community that would rival or surpass the 2001 Orange Recall.

    The major difference between today and  2001 is that while in 2001 stakeholder alliances and community communication networks were built from the ground up, today those community stakeholder alliances and communication networks are already in place across the Greater Orange Communities. 

    Aside from the disaster for a 2014 Bond, losing Christensen at this point, for any reason, would be a disaster for local schools. With the Common Core implementation, labor contract negotiations underway, and OUSD property related issues all on the front burner, a search for a new leader in the middle of a community in revolt could set the progress OUSD has made educationally, on its reputation, and with the morale of its employees  back a decade.

    It now appears one historic meeting stands between progress toward a bright future and total chaos for OUSD: Monday June 23, 2014.


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