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S.O.S. Committee Agrees to Move Forward Without Board's Support

The parents who have been heading up the effort to start a task force geared toward preventing future school closures decided that working independently of the San Bruno Park School District Board would help solve the problem.

On Tuesday, a group of concerned community members gathered to discuss and strategize their options regarding the S.O.S. committee that was originally created by board member Jennifer Blanco.

During this meeting, there were many topics debated, ranging from the long term vs. short term objectives of the district, the current state of the administration, the superintendent's job performance and the level of the board's participation in the S.O.S. committee.

At the end of the meeting, it was decided that the San Bruno Park School District board could do whatever it would like as far as its version of the S.O.S committee.

The parents at this meeting had decided that we wanted to be fully dissolved from the school board, both in the S.O.S effort as well as the effort to avoid school closure and save our schools. In essence, the community is forming their own San Bruno S.O.S Committee.

Our message to the board:

"The San Bruno S.O.S Committee is a community based, grassroots formation that will get strongly involved with the financial and operational aspects of the district."

One of the major talking points for the S.O.S was whether or not the SBPSD board would recognize, listen and work with us. Since our decision was to work independently of district board leadership, we compiled a list of demands:

  • We demand clarity, by was of accurate, transparent and timely communication from the district.
  • We demand accountability - by the district, by the administration and by the board.
  • We demand to be heard - by the district, by the administration and by the board.

The S.O.S has resolved to do whatever it takes to ensure these demands are met.

In other words, we expect that the district will work with us, will hear our concerns, will engage in open, honest, accurate and timely communication with us and will be accountable for their actions.

At the San Bruno Park School District Board of Trustee meeting on Wednesday, these ideas were presented to the board during their action item discussion to refine the authorized "Save Our Schools" advisory committee.

Board member Henderson opened the agenda item by explaining the board could not have a committee without its involvement. Board member Sanchez commented that communication was a two way street and board member Martinez inquired to what levels of communication the S.O.S committee was looking for.

Board member Blanco openly supported the idea, saying she was "Glad to see the parents mobilizing." She also expressed concern over the parents inability to trust the board leadership at this time.

In the end, the SBPSD board dissolved their version of the S.O.S committee and acknowledged the committee's desire to work independently.

There is a long road ahead, for all of us. While the S.O.S committee is in a very fledgling state, we enter the summer knowing how important this momentum is and that we, as parents and community members, need to continue to mobilize and move forward towards our intentions of helping make San Bruno Park a great school district.

A second meeting of the San Bruno Community S.O.S committee will be scheduled for next week. It is open to everyone. If you would like to get involved and keep this momentum going, please join us!

savesanbrunoschools May 18, 2012 at 02:35 AM
is the SOS Committee paying the school district to use their buildings for meetings? who is paying for the fliers that have been printed? how much moneyu is blanco spending to fund this group? looks like the school board spawned this parcel tax support group and is now trying to pretend they don't have any association with it. looks like taxpayer money being used build support for a parcel tax which is one of the projects listed in teh sos handout. how much money has been spent by this group and where are the financial records showing where the money is coming from?
Scott C. May 18, 2012 at 03:34 AM
SaveSSS: Attend an SOS meeting to measure the great distance between the answers to your questions and the implications underlying them :-)
savesanbrunoschools May 18, 2012 at 04:21 AM
SC. I was at the meeting. were you there? guess somebody will have to get the state to look into this.
Joe Capote May 18, 2012 at 04:35 AM
@sanbrunoschools, hopefully I can help clarify. There is no money coming from the district. There is no taxpayer money being used of any kind. The attendees paid for the room in which the meeting was held, at the Veterans Memorial rec center. The board officially dissolved the SOS committee at last night's meeing. There is no direct board involvement in this group. There were no board members present at the meeting on Tuesday night. So far, the group has spent a total of $23 for 1.5 hours of time to rent Room A at the Veterans Recreation Center in SB Park. The money came directly from the pockets of the attendees. Literally. The parcel tax was discussed, but not officially supported at this time. The agenda items on the handout are discussion points - not projects. I'm not sure yet how it looks like taxpayer money being used to build support for a parcel tax, but I assure you its not. And, I'd like to prove it. Attend our next meeting and see for yourself! If we truly want to save San Bruno schools, we need to keep the momentum going. Not just on the message boards, but in the community!
savesanbrunoschools May 18, 2012 at 06:50 AM
JC so the SOS committee was started by the school district board that originally created the SOS committee. now a new SOS committee, discussing the parcel tax, claiming to have no connection to the board has been formed at exactly the same time the school board dissolves the committee with the same name it created and promoted for the purpose of supporting a parcel tax. looks like you have thought of everything. i guess you have a legal fund in place if the SOS Committee and its members run into expensive legal problems. what is blanco's function on the new committee? what is your function on the SOS committee? Are you a leader or just a spokesman?
Joe Capote May 18, 2012 at 01:35 PM
@SSBS, come to our next meeting!
Chris Kiely May 18, 2012 at 06:12 PM
SSBS: you describe the SOS committee as:"claiming to have no connection to the board has been formed at exactly the same time the school board dissolves the committee with the same name it created".... I get the impression you think this is all some sham masterminded by the school board. I distrust this board as much as anyone, but there is a different explanation for the details you mention. Maybe the people involved told the Board to go pound sand. Just saying....
Paul Linden May 18, 2012 at 06:13 PM
I was at the board meeting where the board dissolved the original SOS committee. Unless Mr Capote and Mr Henderson are really good actors, there is no connection. Sometimes there actually isn't a conspiracy.
Karin Cunningham May 18, 2012 at 06:37 PM
Ay CARAMBA!
Bill Baker May 18, 2012 at 08:41 PM
Doesn't the term S.O.S. create a word-sense disambiguation problem?

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