To the Editor:
Statement read to the FUSD Board, June 1st meeting:
The law is there at the state and federal level to ensure that all children especially EL students receive an education. The state provides funding to ensure the programs address the needs of our children at the school site. AS A MEMBER OF ELAC and as a mom I HAVE been trying to get involved and find out how these services have been functioning at my school for my child and all the children and have unfortunately encountered barriers after barriers.
My questions have been: What programs have been set in place to address our lowest performing students? What progress and what monitoring assessments have been used at my school to demonstrate how our children are doing? What practices have been put in place to accomplish the task? I understand this school has received state and federal funds; $24,515.00 for EIA/LAP; $46,055.00 for EIA/SCE; $61,599.00 For Title 1; Over $60,000.00 for other allocations such as Title 11, Title 111 Title 1V.
Now Mr. Prado, you have quoted in the past that you do not care too much about the standardized test scores. You refuse to speak to a member of the public about Data. So Mr. PRADO, if you ignore the data and do not believe in the state measures of progress or the federal accountability regulations, how are you conducting your business? Would you mind explaining to your community and voters how you come to the conclusion your school district is excellent? Isnât it true that API s and AYPs are the gage of measurement allowing our District to receive additional funding to help our underserved children? My question now is âArenât these tests important to the school districts?â Isnât compliance with supplemental funding regulations a very important matter you need to monitor and implement properly? On MAY 25th at the last SSC Piru meeting, no business was conducted and none of these answers were provided to the public.
We do not need you to come to our SSC meeting to threaten us, we need you to come and make SSC comply.
MR. Prado, my understanding is that FUSD cannot be accepting these funds without complying with the rules and regulations.
So I would like to remind you that the US Dept compliance team has the authority to withdraw these funds from this District. So next time before you start insulting outsiders, make sure you are not biting the hands that are feeding you.
We are putting you on notice Mr. Prado and Mr. Sweeney, and demand an accountability report of all supplemental funds at Piru School we have been requesting for over 5 months. You are responsible for these funds and the education of our children. We will not stand for your disrespect! What are you hiding Mr. Prado?
Please contact me at with your answers within 3 days of this written request. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
Looking forward to your answer!!!!
To the Editor:
I previously submitted a letter to the Fillmore Gazette about the Piru Elementary School School Site Committee (SSC) which does not conform to the CA requirements for SSC meetings and it's obligation for fiscal and educational accountability. I was shocked by the conduct of the FUSD Board President and could not fully reveal the extent of his verbal misconduct. Now, thanks to a recording made by another citizen during the meeting, I can entirely share the insidious speech of Mr. Tony Prado during the "public comment" portion of the meeting on May 25th.
Quote: (Tony Prado, FUSD Board President)
"I would like to advise you that you should be wary, leery of strangers in our midst. It seems that they come from outside the community of Piru, or Fillmore. We don't know what their interest is, yet, but we will find out that many of these individuals have an agenda where they try to get a lot of information from you, and we don't really understand why. We need to be able to understand, and we need to be very suspicious of these individuals, what it is that they want to know and why they want to know it. They are going to be asking a lot of specific information, and I urge you to be careful, always pass this information on to the District office, in case you don't understand all the particulars. I don't understand all the particulars, and there are people that are in office or people in our district office that have this kind of information. But you really must be very, very careful, especially about these outsiders coming in, about these outsiders who wish to come in for political or economic reasons."
Mr. Prado's words of warning to the Piru School Site Council did not comport at all with the training that the District had just provided to the School Site Council members. It seems that Mr. Prado was trying to undo what the Council had just learned from Dr. Babb, who stressed the critical role the SSC plays in helping to provide parent and community input into the educational success of the children to allow for public involvement, and to demonstrate respect for the voice of the public. He noted that the meetings were to be open and allow for pubic comment, and that norms of respect and courtesy should always be followed.
Where does Mr. Prado think the funds under the control of the School Site Council, or the School Board, for that matter, come from? Doesn't FUSD receive Equalization money from the State? Doesn't FUSD accept federal funds? Does he think that all of the over $30 million that FUSD receives comes from local taxes? This year FUSD received over $720,000 in Federal Title I money alone, which is just a portion of the total federal money FUSD receives.
Does Mr. Prado think that the 'outsiders' whose state and federal taxes provide these funds have no right to come to meetings and ask questions to find out their tax money is being spent? Does he believe that he, and the other Board members have NO accountability to the taxpayers of California and the United States?
The money the FUSD Board and the Piru SSC are charged with spending is a public school trust, not a private school piggy bank. Mr. Prado should publicly reject what he said, and offer an apology to the taxpayers of Piru, Fillmore, Ventura County, and California. I urge the Ventura County, CA, and US Departments of Education to determine if Piru Elementary School is receiving all the funds they are entitled to receive from the FUSD and how that money specified for the education of children is being used. The Piru Elementary School SSC has been warned not to share that information at its public meetings by FUSD Board President Tony Prado.
Granada Hills, CA
To the Editor:
Hello FUTA Members:
The FUSD school board has declared an EMERGENCY!
The Board, in an EMERGENCY meeting called last night 6/3/10 passed a resolution allowing the "Board in its sole discretion to SUSPEND Article 10" of our Contract. Article 10 is the Transfer and Reassignment Article. This article is "suspended for the 2010 - 2011 school year with respect to transfers and reassignments, both voluntary and involuntary, to and from Piru School."
Last Friday there was a message about healing from our superintendent and the power of one person etc. Now less than a week later we are having an emergency and having to suspend our Contractual Agreement with the district? (Speaking of the Contract...We haven't even received a copy of the new contract - it was supposed to be delivered with in 30 days of ratification.).
The district has hired an administrator to come in and help at Piru. The district has hired a mediator to come in and help mediate and heal the faculty. How is the EMERGENCY resolution that allows for a one year suspension of Article 10 in the contract helping?
Does this mean that if you are an Elementary teacher at San Cayetano, Mountain Vista. or Sespe that you could involuntarily be transferred to Piru to fill the space of a charter petitioner? Does this mean that a charter petitoner will be involuntarily transferred into one of the other elem. schools in order to break up the nine petioners? Does this mean that this is a threat hanging over FUTA members' heads to shape up or they will be moved involuntarily?
Does this mean that if you stand up for your rights the district and the school board can declare an EMERGENCY and suspend any part of the contract so that they can behave punitively and with malice?
I am asking Wayne Bauer, the new FUTA President (great timing - at the end of the year huh?) to put an end to this nonsense and use all available resources to communicate to us as FUTA members what is happening and what steps are being taken to end this nonsense.
Together in Union,
To the Editor:
TO: Mr. Prado, President of the Board
Board of Trustees
Ref: Harassment - June 1st, 2010
It was reported from several community members that on Saturday the 22nd of May a VICTORY Party was organized at Britt Park. Free food was distributed; jolly jumps were delivered while music and piĂ±atas were used for entertainment.
It was brought to our attention by several children of our community that names of teachers, parents that happened to be petitioners of the Piru Charter School were set on the piĂ±atas as decorations. The administrators were leading on the hitting of the piĂ±atas creating an emotionally disturbing scene for the innocent children invited to the Victory Party.
I am coming here to night to ask all the organizers of this party to cease and desist and stop the organized harassment against teachers and parents who did nothing but try to propose a better choice to our school community. It is appalling to find out that members of the BOARD ELECTED BY THE CITIZENS OF Fillmore Unified are lending themselves to this type of harassment behaviors in support to a sick propaganda.
What I just described can be qualified in many US communities as a âhate crimeâ !!
Mr. Prado, the members of our community will not stand for this type of behavior! IF you have read the history book, you should know that the inquisition is over and will not be perpetrated in our community against our children, against our parents and against our caring teachers.
As any other crime, this crime can be punishable by the proper institutions protecting our rights, our civil rights and our human rights.
WE DO TAKE the actions of the leadership of FUSD very seriously and will not allow continuous harassment.
Please consider this letter an official warning to all the leaders sitting around this table tonight who have crossed the line of human respect and human dignity and beware that appropriate measures will be sought by all concerned citizens of Fillmore UNIFIED.
All evidence and testimonies will be submitted to the authority and justice will be pursued all the way to the Attorney Generalâs office and all the way to the election poll MR. Prado November 2010.
Mr. Galan, a special complaint will be filed against you as the SSC chair, ELAC President and leader of the parents for power with the attorney general, the US Dept and the compliance board of the State of CA. For your information, your name has been brought up in several occasions defaming members of the community and teachers in public. Beware that you may be found liable and find yourself as a defender to a law suit based on defamation of character. Thank you!
To the Editor:
To Whom It May Concern:
At this time I am removing my child from enrollment in Piru Elementary School. With this letter I ask that any and all records and paperwork that the School has regarding my son, (Name Removed) be released to me at this time.
I am taking this action due to recent events which prove to me that certain administrators, and School Board Members of Fillmore School Board of Trustees do not have all of the students best interests in mind as they conduct their district business.
My son will not be attending any school within Fillmore Unified School District. I have found a âschool of choiceâ that has welcomed us. Based on state and federal law I do not need any approval or âtransferâ from the District to take my child to this school which is not in âPIâ status (as all elementary schools in FUSD are) and which creates the type of welcoming environment that I want for my child.
It is my hope that the School Board will one day conduct their District in a way that creates a welcoming and challenging learning environment for all of the children which attend their schools and that one day the administrators and School Board will listen respectfully to ALL parents whether or not they speak with praise or criticism of their policies and programs.
To the Editor:
A Stunningly Underwhelming Public event...
I'm appalled that the majority of our city council wanted only an "open house" to allow a public viewing of the most significant public works achievement in over six decade: A state of the art waste water and recycling plant that has achieved at least six local and national awards. This facility will serve the community for decades to come and to all but ignore a feat of this magnitude with an "open house" is inexcusable.
No individual or company was recognized for their contributions nor was Bert Rapp mentioned. No county or state officials were present nor were there any public announcements. No past city officials were invited or recognized. A very undignified occasion to be sure.
Surprisingly the old 1955 Sewer Plant plaque was installed on a large concrete monument at the back of the plant office. The dedication plaque for the new facility is stuck on a wall inside, out of public sight. Why isnât the new plaque mounted outside, viewable by the general public as dedication plaques are in this and every other community?
Thanks to the efforts of American Water, W.M. Lyles, Kennedy/Jenks and others for providing tours and saving the day. At least you added value to the event.
Uninvited former official