Voters, students protest Oxnard Union High School District teacher bias

District says teachers "appropriately disciplined"- but one promoted to assistant principal

By George Miller

Over a dozen irate and motivated parents, residents and students spoke at the 4-5-17 Oxnard Union High School District board meeting about what they say is extreme election-related teacher bias in Rancho Campana High School. Two brothers both attending the school collected and chronicled a most interesting and disturbing dossier, dating back to the day after the election. This was presented and dissected at the meeting.  If you haven’t already read Deborah Baber-Savalla’s article on the lead-up to this in CitizensJournal.us, please do.

The Germaine family: (L-R) Tim., Jane, Wyatt and Cole, made statements about teacher/Rancho Campana H.S. political bias at 4-5-17 Oxnard Union High School District board meeting. Photo: Marc Langsam

 

4-5-17 Oxnard Union High School District board meeting. Photo: Marc Langsam

More event photos by Marc Langsam

 

Jane and Tim Germaine, the parents of Wyatt and Cole Germaine, spoke first, followed by their progeny. Residents from Camarillo, Port Hueneme, Oxnard and Ventura followed them. All seemed angry and disturbed over what they felt were outrageous unprofessional highly politicized and biased teacher comments about the election, President-Elect- now President- Donald Trump, “Republicans” and “Conservatives. Rather than attempt to summarize and cherry pick quotes, we offer you some of the speakers’ written statements below and a video of their actual delivery. No other publication in the world has provided all of this.

Ms. Germaine told meeting attendees that she had initially complained to the principal, who was unresponsive and then to Superintendent Dr. Penelope DeLeon, who discussed it with her but did not follow up. Germaine later told CitizensJournal.us that she did have subsequent contact with some other school officials who discussed certain aspects of certain offenses. An apology was forthcoming from one teacher. Ms. Germaine filed  a complaint with the Camarillo Police-VC Sheriff , who referred it to the School District. She said that she later filed a written complaint, which we have requested a copy of. Here vit is now: OUHSD Teacher Bias Complaint

The board is not supposed to respond to public comments, but respond they did anyway to the angry resident broadside. Instead of trying to deny/stonewall it like the Ventura Superintendent did back in December after a similar incident, they  acknowledged the problem, said they had taken it seriously, investigated it, meted out appropriate discipline, sent a letter about it out to employees (not clear if school or district) and are taking steps to help prevent a recurrence. The Germaine family doesn’t think they took it seriously until she got it on Fox News and local media (CitizensJournal.us and The Acorn). The school was forced to take down its web site and Facebook page due to the high volume of irate messages. Even now, she’s not so sure.

District Superintendent says that harassment of Trump supporters, Republicans and Conservatives isn’t the only such problem and that there is also troublesome harassment of “immigrants” by some students. If so, that is troubling, but we have no details. The big differences are that:

1- The issue this article addresses is abuses by FACULTY, not students.

2- The district has gone to great pains to address the immigrant harassment problem (without a similar one addressing the extreme teacher bias, until the issue was forced by Ms. Germaine), including it in its messaging and even spreading a video made by the Superintendent. There was also the small matter of what appeared to be mass, possibly faculty-orchestrated protest marches against the election of Donald Trump as President.

Local schools declare themselves safe spaces for students

Oxnard Union superintendent takes stand against immigration agents …

[PDF]Oxnard Union High School District Oxnard, California

Dec 14, 2016 – Dr. Penelope A. DeLeon, Superintendent of Schools …. on behalf of the Oxnard Union High School District. 10. ….. states that all students, regardless of immigration status, have a right to nondiscrimination and bullying specified under BP5145. … Board meetings are video recorded and are available at:…
 

Public speakers on teacher bias

 

Event record

Name Date Duration          
Board Meeting – Español Apr 5, 2017 03h 17m     Video MP3 Audio MP4 Video
Board Meeting Apr 5, 2017 03h 20m Agenda   Video MP3 Audio MP4 Video
 

(Public comments start at 23:40 on video, followed by Board comments)

 

District’s sincerity questioned

Russell Gibbs, Rancho Campana HS teacher. Source: OUHSD web site

After hearing District Supt. Penelope DeLeon say that offending teachers were “appropriately  disciplined, we heard some surprising news about one of them the very next day….

I’m just pulling myself up off the floor.  My son just told me that Mr. Gibbs ([email protected], 805-394-4733 ), the teacher that allowed a student to be singled out as a Republican and allowed a student to perform a rap song calling Trump a ‘racist bastard’ is being PROMOTED TO ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL OF HUENEME HIGH SCHOOL.  He said Mr. Gibbs told the class that today was his last day teaching at RCHS because of his promotion.

–  Irate Parent

~~~

Teacher “discipline

I looked up salary schedules for Oxnard Union.

The teacher in question not only got the promotion to ass’t. principal, but received a raise of $25-30k
 
– Ventura educator

~~~

This must be the “appropriate disciplinary action” that Dr. DeLeon referred to last night when she said “I can assure the community that all concerns and complaints have been investigated at the site and district level, and appropriate disciplinary action was taken with the staff and school when those complaints were made and investigated.”
You do what he did and your punishment is a promotion. This would be laughable if it weren’t so outrageous.
 
– Manuela Walter
~~~
Ahh!   This is why the “appropriate disciplinary action” was so illusive to us at the meeting yesterday.  They already knew about this last night.  How do they sleep at night?  Any chance Gibbs is baiting us?   FOX news probably would like to know about this outcome.  Guess we are attending the next OUHSD meeting.  Is Betsy Devos out of our reach?
 
– Gina Mulhern
 

Resident statements

Photo: Marc Langsam

Notes from statement of Jane Germaine, parent

  • 11/9/16-Mrs. Butler-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher told class “Trump hates women”.
  • 11/9/16-Mrs. Eglitis-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher told class “It is raining in Southern California so much these days because Trump is president”.
  • 11/9/16-Mrs. Garcia-Cole-grade 10: Teacher told class “I feel like I just got hit with a 2 x 4 because Donald Trump is president”.
  • 1/20/17-Mrs. Eglitis-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher told class she placed a $100 bet on Donald Trump being assassinated at inauguration
  • 1/23/17-Mrs. Butler-Cole-grade 9: Teacher using classroom time to talk about her ‘activism’ at the Women’s March she attended on 1/21/17.  (We have this recorded)
  • February 2017-Mr. Creech-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher told class “The four horsemen of the apocalypse are death, war, famine and Donald Trump”.
  • February 2017-Mr. Creech-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher told class “Fox News is fake news”.
  • February 2017-Mrs. Butler-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher told class that she is estranged from certain members of her family because they are conservative.

  • Excerpts from the video shown to students:

“…We’ve been floating this country on credit for centuries, yo, and we’redone watching and waiting while this invention called whiteness uses and abuses us, burying black people out of sight and out of mind while extracting our culture, our dollars, our entertainment like oil – black gold, ghettoizing and demeaning our creations then stealing them, gentrifying our genius and then trying us on like costumes before discarding our bodies like rinds of strange fruit.”

-“…we know that police somehow manage to deescalate, disarm and not kill white people everyday.”

-…”when paid public servants can pull a drive-by on 12 year old playing alone in the park in broad daylight, killing him on television and then going home to make a sandwich…” 

  • 2/23/17-Mr. Creech-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher telling students that ‘Stalin is his favorite dictator’ and in speaking about dictators, hypothesized to the class, who would be a better dictator, himself (Mr. Creech) or Trump.  He then brought up the word ‘gun’ and told class “If I come to school with a gun, then you can follow me… extra credit!”.
  • 2/28/17-Mr. Gibbs-Cole-grade 9: Teacher allowed Cole to be singled out by another student, in front of class, for being an acknowledged Republican.
  • 2/28/17-Mr. Gibbs-Cole-grade 9: Teacher allowed the above mentioned student to perform a self-comprised rap song which referred to POTUS as a “racist bastard”.  Side note: this same student has been suspended in the past for making alleged threats of a school shooting. Based on the fact that this student was allowed to perform this and make his feelings of Republicans known, how is it that Cole should feel safe and protected on campus?

These offenses have created distractions for my children in the classroom.  They have also fostered an environment where my children now feel threatened and discriminated against for their own beliefs and the ideals my husband and I instill at home.  We raise our children to understand our values, not yours.  A pattern of conduct has developed and we are putting OUHSD on notice.  We demand that a change in policy be made and enforcement of existing anti-discrimination policies be adhered to.

~~~

Photo: Marc Langsam

Notes from statement of Tim Germaine, parent

Theme of promoting violence in the classroom:

  1. 1/20/17-Mrs. Eglitis-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher told class she placed a $100 bet on Donald Trump being assassinated at inauguration
  1. 2/17/17-Video shown in all classrooms to entire student body: Jesse Williams’ BET awards acceptance speech Jesse Williams’ fiery BET Awards speech Excerpts from the video shown to students:

“…We’ve been floating this country on credit for centuries, yo, and we’re done watching and waiting while this invention called whiteness uses and abuses us, burying black people out of sight and out of mind while extracting our culture, our dollars, our entertainment like oil – black gold, ghettoizing and demeaning our creations then stealing them, gentrifying our genius and then trying us on like costumes before discarding our bodies like rinds of strange fruit.”

-“…we know that police somehow manage to deescalate, disarm and not kill white people everyday.”

-…”when paid public servants can pull a drive-by on 12 year old playing alone in the park in broad daylight, killing him on television and then going home to make a sandwich…” 

  1. 2/23/17-Mr. Creech-Wyatt-grade 10: Teacher telling students that ‘Stalin is his favorite dictator’ and in speaking about dictators, hypothesized to the class, who would be a better dictator, himself (Mr. Creech) or Trump.  He then brought up the word ‘gun’ and told class “If I come to school with a gun, then you can follow me… extra credit!”.
  • 3/6/17 Police report filed with Officer Lindsey at the Camarillo Police Department office to notify them of the three previous incidents of promotion of violence during classroom time. Police report #2017-32215.
  • As my wife stated earlier, these offenses have created unnecessary distractions for our children in the classroom. They have also fostered an environment where our children feel threatened and discriminated against for what they believe and the ideals we instill at home.  A pattern of conduct has developed and we are putting Oxnard Union High School District on notice.  We demand that a change in policy be made and enforcement of existing anti-discrimination policies be adhered to.

~~~

Photo: Marc Langsam

Statement of Cole Germaine, freshman at Rancho Campana High School.

My name is Cole Germaine.  I am a freshman at Rancho Campana High School.

There have been several incidents where political views have been expressed abruptly by both students and teachers in the classroom.  It is disturbing and unwanted.  I know that my parents have sent regards to the school but nothing has seemed to change, at least not disciplinary-wise.

My first incident was when one day, my Biology teacher decided to tell us about what she thinks and feels about President Donald Trump. She made insulting remarks about him, with one having the claim that he “doesn’t like women”. This was the day after the election. She also explained how she didn’t “feel safe” within the new president’s election.

A similar case was also noticed the same day, after the election. This time it was my French teacher. She explained how the country was “in danger” and we were heading in the wrong direction.

Some time after the election, in fact quite recently, my Biology teacher yet again expressed her views during class time with little thought towards it. She explained how she was going to the Women’s March. Then she said that she had not been an activist, but she was becoming one.

The last case I want to mention was with a fellow student, in fact one of my friends. He had made a rap song criticizing President Trump. The shocking part about this was when he sang it as part of a performance. Before he even started, he asked if there was anyone who was with the Republican party. I raised my hand, only to look around and see I was the only hand. He then continued with the song. My Drama teacher thanked me for putting up with it, but it just shocks me that he gave the student permission to perform this in the first place. The teacher later apologized to the class after requests to do so were made by my parents.

My only request is that more disciplinary action is taken when employed teachers of the school district express their political views and feelings. It is completely unnecessary and consumes valuable time that us students need for our education.

Photo: Marc Langsam

Statement of Wyatt Germaine, Sophomore at Rancho Campana High School.

My name is Wyatt Germaine. I am a Sophomore at Rancho Campana High School.

During my Freshman year there was no such talk of political views and government opposition.  That all changed my sophomore year when Trump got elected.  The day after the election, November 9, 2016 within 10 minutes of class starting my Biology started talking about the election the previous night.  She said “I am surprised that they elected a racist, why they would elect someone like Trump because he hates women” “I’m wearing these Hillary pants for her support because she lost”.  I just felt like she was trying to brainwash us because she was using classroom time to talk about it.

Mrs. Butler announced that to the whole class after the inauguration she was doing the women’s march.  I was mad and didn’t feel it was right for her to do that during class.

The day of the inauguration, Mrs. Eglitis made the joke about betting on President Trump’s assassination.  I was appalled that she said that because I didn’t know if she was serious or joking.

During World Civilizations class we were talking about the lost generation that basically never existed because of World War I.  The discussion went on to how these people could not cope with the real world and then my teacher mentioned the four horseman of the apocalypse.  He said the four horseman of the apocalypse are death, war, famine and Donald Trump. Practically everyone in the classroom laughed.  I felt like that is not what you say about a president, no matter who he is.

When he made the comment about Fox News, being fake news, I felt like they are trying to brain wash me.  I find it surprising that adults think it’s ok to say this stuff to kids.  And we have to sit there and take it.  I can’t walk out of the classroom and I feel like it is a personal attack against my family and what my parents have taught me.  It is distracting and it’s in the back of my head when I’m trying to work. 

My biology teacher told me about how she is estranged from certain members of her family because they are conservative.  That bothered me because I think my family is conservative and what would she think or say about my family?

Regarding the Black Entertainment Television speech, I felt like it was a direct threat to cops saying that cops are bad and that black people should rise up against them.  I felt like it was unfair that  the video was played.  I felt like they were saying that if I wanted to become a cop someday that that is what people would think of me.

Photo: Marc Langsam

Comments and statement by meeting speaker Deborah Baber-Savalla

  • Appreciated the words about discrimination policy changes under agenda item 14D. Please send me a copy of those changes when complete. A trust but verify measure.
  • Board member Steven Hall’s question about what active steps are being taken to ensure this doesn’t continue wasn’t answered and I look forward to learning what the answer to his question is.
  • When was the first time that Principal Adams spoke with his staff about the bias, anti-Trump classroom comments and has it been brought up at more than one staff meeting? I ask the question because at tonight’s meeting, Superintendent said measures were taken already yet we have instances as late as the end of February so I wonder about the timing.

Statement to OUHSD Board by Deborah Baber (Savalla), Oxnard, CA

I’m a registered Republican. In July, I happily rooted for Donald Trump to get my Party’s nomination. In August, I gladly rallied for him on our streets. In September, I delightedly made phone calls on Trump’s behalf.  In October I excitedly campaigned for him in California AND Nevada. In November, I proudly cast my vote for the man who, in a landslide victory, has become our 45th President of these United States.

Then December came. I was alarmed to learn that in the fall while I was participating in our nation’s venerated election process, a Ventura County Middle School teacher sponsored a class in which Donald Trump’s handwriting was likened to that of Himmler’s, one of Adolf Hitler’s primary architects and overseers of the death of millions of Jews and hundreds of thousands of others. I am also Jewish.

Then, as now, I went before the School Board to register my concern and… MY FEAR of this dangerous education bias. I am here today for similar reasons.

In February I learned from Fox News that Rancho Campana teacher, Sara Eglitis, talked to her class about LOSING a bet on President Trump’s assassination. Since then I’ve learned that at least four of her teacher colleagues have made disparaging and dangerous remarks IN THE CLASSROM about the President of the United States. What in the world are they thinking? More importantly, what in the world are they doing to our students, the future leaders of our Nation?

You are the “high court” of public education for this district. Surely you don’t agree that it’s okay for Oxnard Unified teachers to bet on President Trump’s assassination, or claim that Fox News is fake news, or advocate Stalin as an appropriate role model. Surely it’s not okay with you to allow teachers to suggest a teacher carry a gun and invite students to follow him (a dictator) and get “extra credit” for doing so, or claim that “Trump hates women” and is a “racist bastard”, or share with an entire student body a celebrity’s sentiments about “whiteness” using, abusing, and “burying black people…” and law enforcement colluding with white people in the killing of innocent black folks?

Surely you don’t find this acceptable teaching because if you do, then where in this world can I find a safe place? A place that’s safe from the hate-mongering classroom education and indoctrination of our youth?

~~~

Photo: Marc Langsam

Statement for April 5th OUHSD School Board Meeting – Manuela Walter

School Teachers, inarguably, are among the most influential people in shaping the lives of our impressionable children. Oxnard Union High School District’s own Employee Handbook, in the Blueprint for Greatness, states “As Professionals and Educators we support our District’s mission to prepare students for College, Career, and Life Readiness that guides them to become a productive citizen in our community. The District’s motto of Students First, Every day, Every school, Every classroom, provides a laser focus for what matters most and for how adults can dramatically influence the lives of students.”

The Handbook’s Code of Ethics states that “The Board of Education expects District employees to maintain the highest ethical standards, follow District policies and regulations, and abide by state and federal laws. Employee conduct should enhance the integrity of the District and advance the goals of the educational programs.”

It also states that the educator “Shall not intentionally expose the student to embarrassment or disparagement.”

The Preamble to the California Teachers Association Code of Ethics states, “The educator recognizes the magnitude of the responsibility inherent in the teaching process. The desire for the respect and confidence of one’s colleagues, of students, of parents, and of the members of the community provides the incentive to attain and maintain the highest possible degree of ethical conduct.”

The California Teachers Association Code of Ethics Principle II, Commitment to the Profession, states “The education profession is vested by the public with a trust and responsibility requiring the highest ideals of professional service. In the belief that the quality of the services of the education profession directly influences the nation and its citizens, the educator shall exert every effort to raise professional standards, to promote a climate that encourages the exercise of professional judgement, to achieve conditions that attract persons worthy of the trust to careers in education, and to assist in preventing the practice of the profession by unqualified persons.”

I assume that the OUHSD Employee Handbook is required reading for all teachers in the District. I also assume that the California Teachers Association Code of Ethics is required reading for all public school teachers in the state.

The common thread here is Ethics….the principles of conduct governing an individual or group,    and morals…particular values concerning what is right and what is wrong and being able to differentiate between the two.   Also important is common sense… the ability to think and behave in a reasonable way and to make good decisions and use good judgment.

When we send our children to school, we entrust the teachers and administrators to have the highest ethical standards, morals, common sense, and to treat our children fairly and compassionately. Teachers should never single out a student in class due to their political beliefs, or allow another student to do the same. This is highly unethical.

Teaching should not be tainted by political bias. Teacher’s personal political opinions have no place in the classroom.

Since the 2016 presidential election, several teachers at Camarillo’s Rancho Campana High School have exhibited extremely bad judgment and unethical behavior. Very disturbing was the February 23rd incident where Mr. Creech, discussing dictators, and mentioning President Trump, allegedly mentioned the word ‘gun’ and told class, “If I come to school with a gun, then you can follow me… extra credit!”

This is horrific, should not be made light of, and cannot be tolerated.

A teacher’s words are powerful.  Students take cues from their teachers. In this day and age of school shootings, this type of comment is unforgivable. Mr. Creech should be fired and lose his license to teach. What would have happened if a teacher or student made this type of remark under Barack Obama’s presidency, or Hillary Clinton had she won the election? I believe the teacher would have been fired and the student would have been expelled.

Teacher’s personal political opinions have no place in the classroom, and those who exhibit this type of behavior share responsibility for the hatred towards, and violence against, President Trump and his supporters. How are conservative students in Republican families supposed to feel safe in public schools when teachers are allowed to espouse their anti-Trump rhetoric in the classroom? Parents should seriously consider taking their children out of public schools and either enroll them in private school or homeschool them. Universities have been indoctrinating our young people in leftist ideologies for years. This too must end. We will NOT stand for this occurring in our K-12 classrooms. You as School Board Members have the power to end this. We are watching and we are listening and we are not going away.

Thank You

~~~

Statement to OUHSD Board  by George Miller, 4-5-17

I am shocked but not really surprised by the highly inappropriate, unprofessional, biased behavior – 13 reported incidents encompassing multiple Rancho Campana High School teachers and administrative personnel. This is not just a single rogue teacher, which would also  be inappropriate-  it appears to be systemic. This is a serious abuse of power and mentoring relationships which you need to address- NOW. We’re putting you on notice that this is unacceptable behavior.

“A fish rots from the head down” is an old saying expressed to me by a NY Italian-American lady who was a former business mentor . Used in the context she employed, it meant that our company’s poor management flowed down through the ranks. And so it is here in Oxnard Unified School District. Ultimately, YOU are responsible — and the voters are responsible for putting you here in the first place.  This happened on YOUR watch and has happened before. It is unacceptable . So, we’re gonna tell voters  about what is happening here and no, we won’t just go away after this meeting.

What is also significant- and troubling-  is that other students and parents have noted the same things, but are too intimidated to go on record here tonight. They fear for their children’s fortunes at school, grades, harassment, or worse. They fear for their own place in the community. Doesn’t that sound more like Venezuela or Cuba than the good ‘ole USA?  We “thank” you for making that climate possible. But WE will be heard and see this through. We especially thank the Germaine family for stepping up to the plate and initiating action. Without concerned parents- and students-  acting, there is really no accountability, as most organizations tend to be self-validating and self-perpetuating.

Let’s take a minute to note that the Germaines alone reported 13 incidents, compiled by their sons. As a career manufacturing management professional , then management consultant and now newspaper publisher, I know that where there is smoke, there is fire.
But, so far, only one teacher has been called to account and so we heard, was let off with only an apology.

In addition to those “deplorable” incidents, there are likely many more. Take, for example, the spectacle of hundreds, if not thousands,  of district students, from multiple high schools being let out onto the streets after the election, egged on by school  personnel, by the way, during school hours, to “protest” the hyped up media and DNC defamatory accusations about our then President Elect of the United States. It was- and still is, by the way, absurd scaremongering. These impressionable, trusting young people were misled by the school district, media and wagging tongues eating it all up and they regurgitated the absurd talking points pounded into them.

I wonder if school personnel reported those absences to the state, which provides funding based upon attendance?  Should that be investigated? Did the parents approve?

If I had kids in the district, I would not put them in your schools. If you can’t straighten it out, it may be time to try something else. More competitive alternatives should be made available to make the differences even more apparent than they already are and to put more good old fashioned American competition into the education market. Private schools, vouchers, charter schools and homeschooling- all come to mind.

~~~

Statement of Gina Mulhern

On February 24, 2017 the Camarillo Acorn reported Rocky Valles the Assistant Superintendent Human Resources of the Oxnard Union High School District said a teacher at the Rancho Campana High School in Camarillo APOLOGIZED for a statement made in the classroom to her students regarding a $100.00 bet she lost due to President Trump not being shot at the Inauguration Ceremony.  
This illuminates a troubling source of bias in the classroom.  This should be disturbing to everyone of us here. The news of this scandal is what brought me to this meeting today.
 
I’ve learned there are even more teachers at Camarillo’s Rancho Campana High School who preach rather than teach.  These unbelievable incidents prove a pervasive liberal political bias  in this less than a year old school.  
 
There is a place for political discussion in the classroom.  Teachers may present all sides as in part of a lesson.  However teachers are prohibited from preaching their personal political views as stated in the Oxnard Union High School District Employee Handbook’s Code of Ethics. Some of the teachers at Rancho Campana High School have gone way beyond acceptability.  
 
Ms. Eglitis, Mr. Creech, Ms. Butler, Ms. Garcia, are abusing taxpayer resources and abusing their ability to speak to captive audiences of students in an attempt to indoctrinate or influence children to adopt specific political positions.  
Teachers are public employees who have been hired and entrusted for the purpose of teaching their subjects and not for the purpose of using their classrooms as a platform for political ideological advocacy.  
 
It is without question students experience direct negative effects from having teachers with significantly different politics than their own preach to them in their captive classrooms.  It is very scary for a student to stand up to their teacher as they are in charge of their grades.  Where does it state there is whistle blowing protection for students guaranteeing they will not experience threats of retaliation.  This situation is very disruptive to the students learning environment.
 
These educators knowingly conducted themselves in a highly unethical manner.  They have breached a trust between themselves, their students, the parents and the taxpayer.  A mere apology will hardly suffice for the damage they have caused.  Are we headed for auditing or cameras in the classroom for protection?
 
I am putting you on notice, the Oxnard Union High School District must put an immediate stop to this outrageous far left political rhetoric in the classroom to captive impressionable students.  Do not forget parents have other options as in Charter, Private and Home Schooling.
 
The official website of the Oxnard Union High School District states ” The Oxnard Union High School District does not discriminate on the basis of the actual or perceived race, ethnicity, religion, color, age, national origin, political affiliation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability, parental or marital status, or any other basis protected by the federal or state or local law, ordinance, or regulation in its educational programs or employment.
 
Kudos to those educators who take their jobs seriously, value the ethics for which they were hired, and provide an unbiased political environment in their classrooms. This is what is conducive to a proper learning environment.  On the subject of politics, all students should feel comfortable in their classrooms no matter what their personal political beliefs are.  All students matter.

~~~

Statement by Michael Hernandez, LAUSD dept. head

(Editor’s note: Mr Hernandez couldn’t get there in time for the meeting from LA, so he had Valerie White read this at the meeting)

April 5, 2016

President Beatriz R. Herrera, School Board President

Oxnard Union High School District

Valerie White read the statement of LAUSD Math Dept head and Port Hueneme resident.

309 S. K Street

Oxnard, CA 93030

My name is Michael Hernandez, I am the math department chair at Vista Middle School (LAUSD) and a former Assistant Principal at Isbell Middle School in the Santa Paula School District.  I am a resident of Port Hueneme.  I am submitting this testimony in support of Jane Germaine (parent) and her son (by document tonight and by email) because I have a prior engagement at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library tonight.  I am asking a friends to read this on my behalf tonight, or distribute it to board members and the public

As an educator, I wish to address my concerns with the learning process and the development of Extended Thinking (Level 4) related to the election of Donald J. Trump as 45th President of the United States by educators at Rancho Campana High School in the Oxnard Union High School District that I hope does not represent all the educators of Oxnard Union High School District.

LAUSD is a proponent of the Hess Cognitive Rigor Matrix, Webb’s Depth of Knowledge, Bloom’s Cognitive Process Dimensions, the 5E Model of Instruction, the Coherence model of Fullan and Quinn, and the Structured Teaching Model of Fisher and Frey.

All these learning models and practices advocate analysis and critique of anything mentioned in class, particularly if bias and opinions have been openly stated in the classroom as  evidenced by  an outright attack on the character and motivations of our nation’s 45th President (since his election) which includes such comments as:

  • “a $100 bet on Donald Trump being assassinated”
  • “Trump hates women”
  • “I feel like I just got hit with a 2 x 4 because Donald Trump is President”
  • “The four horsemen of the apocalypse are death, war, famine and Donald Trump”

as wells as:

  • allowing a Republican student to be ridiculed;
  • allowing for a rap song that references President Trump as a “racist bastard”
  • allowing for Jesse Williams’ BET awards acceptance speech to be shown all students at Rancho Campana High School
  • referencing President Trump as a dictator;

I strongly believe that our classrooms are not meant to be a watered-down environment  void of thought —rather  they are to be  a  collage of viewpoints  freely expressed that openly and equally discuss opposing viewpoints whether we agree with them or not.

I strongly believe in a gradual release of responsibility within the classroom where teachers allows students to formulate their own viewpoints and thinking process independent of bias from the teacher or outsiders.  For this to take place, the classroom must be a place where both sides of politics are addressed (not just the Progressive position but Conservative viewpoints as well).

I strongly believe that students who were forced to listen to the raves of their teachers on the dangers of Mr. Donald Trump; need also to be exposed to the diverse supporters of the nation’s 45th President.

“We The People” who support Donald J. Trump are more than willing to provide the Oxnard Union High School District with such speakers unless the Oxnard Union High School District wishes to “go on record” as “official haters” of the 45th President.

We are more than willing to notify Betsy DeVoss, United States Secretary of Education of your position.

Respectfully submitted,

Mr. Michael Hernandez, LAUSD Educator

CC:       Dr. Penelope DeLeon, Supt.

Email: [email protected]

Oxnard Union High School District Board

Beatriz R. Herrera, President

[email protected]

Dr. Gary Davis, Vice President

[email protected]

Karen Sher, Clerk

[email protected]

Dr. Steve Hall, Member

[email protected]

Wayne Edmonds, Member

Cell:  (805) 830-3397

[email protected]

~~~

Ginny Brice. hoto: Marc Langsam

Kevin Mulhern. Photo: Marc Langsam

 

 

~~~

related correspondence:

April 5, 2017 VIA EMAIL
Dr. Penelope DeLeon, Superintendent, [email protected]
Oxnard Union High School District Board
Beatriz R. Herrera, President [email protected]
Dr. Gary Davis, Vice President [email protected]
Karen Sher, Clerk [email protected]
Dr. Steve Hall, Member [email protected]
Wayne Edmonds, Member [email protected]
Dear Dr. DeLeon,
Thank you for your comments at tonight’s School Board meeting after the many public statements made concerning anti-Trump rhetoric and education bias at Rancho Campana High School.
Included in your comments was a statement that Principal Adams had “met with staff” about the
allegations. You assured those of us in the audience that Mr. Adams conveyed to his staff the
seriousness of this breach in education protocol and that disciplinary measures had been taken. You said it was not possible to divulge what those measures were, however. This leaves me with a few questions I would appreciate answers to.

  1. What day did Principal Adam’s meet with his staff during which this topic was discussed and has he had more than one meeting concerning it?
  2. Dr. Steven Hall asked what implementation measures have been introduced to ensure this type of inappropriate teaching does not reoccur. I did not hear an answer to his question and would appreciate a response to it.
  3. I heard you say that tonight’s agenda included a policy review which would address the issues many of us brought up. I cannot find the item under which that discussion would have taken place. Please draw my attention to the appropriate agenda item.
    President Reagan famously said, “Trust but verify”. I feel the same in this situation. I trust that you and the board will do as you say and would like to know how best you think I can verify remedies have been enacted. Like you and all of the Board members, I too believe our children’s education is near-sacred and should never be compromised by a teacher’s personal beliefs political or otherwise.

Thank you again for your time and attention. I look forward to our continued communication and resolution.
Sincerely,
Deborah Baber (Savalla)

Hi George,
 
Regarding the $100 bet incident, the teacher eventually apologized to the class for her statement so that incident is corroborated.
 
The incident where my son was called out in class for being a Republican was witnessed by another student whose Dad confirmed it and sent email to school, Todd Starnes and Christian Science Monitor about it.  I’ve asked him to come to board meeting he said hes been sick, I think he’s scared like everyone else.
 
The showing of the BET video-Principal Adams announced over PA later in the day his apologies for showing the video so entire student body and staff can attest to that.
 
As I mentioned before, this is a very small, highly sought after school to gain admission to.  It is on a lottery system to get in and parents are terrified that speaking out will affect their children’s grades i.e. college admission opportunities. Many of them cheer me on from the sidelines but that’s where it stops.  My sons still have to go to school, play sports there, etc. so it’s difficult for me to solicit too much information and opinions from other parents for fear of it having repercussions on them directly.  My younger son told me that kids already taunt him saying things like “Don’t tell Cole anything, he’ll just go home and tell his Mommy”. ……
 
Jane
~~~
 
District queried by CitizensJournal.us
 
We sent this request as part of an email to School Superintendent Dr. Penelope DeLeon on 4-6-17

As I told you, I’ll write an article about the meeting and do invite you and/or fellow members to provide a statement for publication, this week, if possible.

Please also regard this letter as a formal request for all available information about the investigation, results, actions taken and preventive medicine for future such incidents. We realize that certain specific personnel information is protected, but a description of findings, conclusions, recommendations and what sort of actions were performed would be in order.

 We received this response today:
I appreciate your concerns.  My team and I will work on a response to your formal request, and should have that to you by Monday.
 
So we decided to publish this article today and will include the district’s response later.

Teacher bias at Rancho Campana H.S.

Teacher bias at Rancho Campana H.S.By Deborah Baber-Savalla At least thirteen reports of election-related teacher bias at Rancho Campana High School in Camarillo (Oxnard Unified High School District) prompted this report. This article is updated to the present and includes additions and corrections to the original article which inaccurately identified the high school and the superintendent associated with the 100-dollar […]

On Presidents Day: Local school district anti-Trump?

On Presidents Day: Local school district anti-Trump?

By Deborah Baber Savalla February 20, 2017 Today is Presidents Day. Our 45th President took office 31 days ago in time-honored tradition yet an English teacher at Campana High School in Camarillo reportedly was upset that she lost a $100 bet since President Trump was not assassinated on Inauguration Day. According to Fox News & […]

George Miller is Publisher of CitizensJournal.us and a “retired” operations management consultant residing in Oxnard


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camille harris

This is chilling. Brainwashing students, while so impressionable, was identified in decades past as the primary step needed for the success of Communism. Kudos to these brave parents for standing up to this mounting wave before it completely washes over our children.

Brian Kearsey

Kudos to Citizens Journal! I’m sure this hyperbolic vitriol spewed by teachers at this school was mirrored in countless others across this once and future great nation, but rarely revealed in the light of an independent, unbiased news organ.

Tom Snyder

Back in 1969-70, my journalism teacher clearly expressed his opposition to the conservative anti-busing members of the school board. Of course, forced integration, like today’s PC culture, turned out to be a disaster that hurt the people most that it was designed to help the most.

Jeff McVicker

I think this is a great learning experience for kids.

William Hicks

1) Teachers have collective bargaining along with tenure. By their contract, no one but the teacher and those responsible for discipline have a RIGHT to what disciplinary action was taken or not taken. AIN’T THAT SPECIAL?

2) Of course, Board Members and The Superintendent will not do what really needs to be done; separate the teachers union influence on Board Member Elections. Why would they when Union dues are used to elect Board Members that tow the union line?

The only answer to a school district that is more concerned with indoctrination over education is to replace them with people that have no ties to the teachers union. Can parents accomplish this?

Marc

Indoctrinated Academia is not a partisan issue. Teachers have an obligation to teach children how to think, not what to think. Political opinions should not be discussed in the classroom unless it honestly, impartially and objectively debates both sides. The classroom should not use politics to bully students who take an unpopular or opposing view. In my opinion, Indoctrinated Academia is Child Abuse.

William Hicks

Very true Marc. Indoctrination started in the 1960’s from my recollection. They, leftists, started out making baby steps that were ignored as trivial. They built on those baby steps to bigger steps and here we are now wondering how this all happened.