About 120 people from San Bernardino Unified School District, School Police, School Board members and various ethnic based organizations from throughout the San Bernardino area met at the San Bernardino Club and Events center to go over sweeping changes to student discipline that many in the community see as adding to the dangers that exist within the city of San Bernardino. Out of the 120 plus people in attendance we only count nine parents. Most of the people in attendance are people that are advocating and receiving funding for the sweeping changes in student citations.
Both Pete Aguilar and Cheryl Brown had people from their office here in attendance. On top of that we had four San Bernardino School District Board Members a clear violation of the Brown act. The violation is that out of the seven members that sit on the board Scott Wyatt, Barbara Flores, Abigail Medina and Mike Gallo are here creating a quorum. Apparently this isn’t the first time San Bernardino School Board has had a quorum without putting out the public notice of the meeting. School Board Sup Dale Mardsen said that since they have four board members at the meeting they now have to fly this as a public meeting after the fact. We asked board member Barbara Flores about this and she said “who cares this is important what are they (DA Ramos and his public integrity unit) going to do slap our hands? I’m ok with that!” To make matters worse later on into the meeting another Board Member (that makes five) came into the meeting Board Member Rogers. It was clear that these board members have no respect for the laws that govern them.
Dr. Harold Vollkommer and Superintendent Marsden worked hand in hand to control the conversation of the meeting leaving ZERO room for real questions or allowing people to speak their minds. It was so bad that Student Parent advocate Steven Figueroa said so in his comments publicly. The only people for this failed plan to remove consequences for the very things most parents work so hard to protect their children from were the people who stood to make money off of implementing the programs. From the mess of switching from different colored paper that was all out of order, poor time management and having the wrong information in the packets this meeting was a mess.
Another key person that stood out to us here is that Rialto School Board Member Dina Walker who was in favor of these horrible ideas making us wonder if Rialto Schools safety is now in jeopardy? Why would a Rialto School Board member attend a meeting like this, speak favorably of it and not have plans for using it in Rialto? Also Mrs. Walker was not there in another capacity alone she self identified as a Rialto School Baord Member and Dale Marsden also introduced her solely in her title as Rialto School Board Member.
Parents spoke about how the district is making parent involvement extremely difficult in this process and in attending this meeting. They are right this whole process has been made out to be as secret and behind closed doors as possible. San Bernardino School District is paying 1,500 a day for an upland based attorney to oversee this process. When this plan was launched it was done in a district employee eyes only email and employees were told they would find trouble with the district if they shared the information that is within.
Dale Marsden told us that no decision has been made and that this DRAFT proposal and that the School Board still has to approve it. The only problem is that Five board members are there all speaking privately about the Draft Proposal and they all are in favor of the proposal.