Monday, December 24, 2007

Answer to previous post: Yes, CVESD's action is illegal, as Capistrano Unified administrators found out

See also San Diego County Department of Education.
See also Lora Duzyk.

Click here to see the original post.

Capistrano Unified - Former Superintendent & Assistant Indicted!
May 24th, 2007
by Kelly at Rancho Santa Margarita Lifestyles
This morning District Attorney Tony Rackauckas issued a statement outlining the investigation of Former Superintendent James Fleming and Former Assistant Superintendent Susan McGill and the indictments handed down as a result of those investigations. The charges were actually brought ten days ago, but were unsealed today.Fleming is charged with:

Misappropriation of public funds
Use of school funds to defeat the recall effort

McGill is charged with:

Here’s something to think about. If convicted Fleming ’s maximum sentence would be four years. McGill’s however would be five. Where’s the justice in that? Why is it that the major player in a crime always seems to get less time than a minor player trying to cover their tracts? Fair or not, those are the rules. So a word to the wise: tell the truth!

Rancho Santa Margarita residents who reside within the Capistrano Unified School District boundaries have been anxiously awaiting the outcome of the investigation which began early in 2006. The school district has been riddled with problems in the past few years, not the least of which was a heated recall effort waged against Fleming for (surprise!) alleged mismanagement of school district funds.

Parents residing in the Capo District were also understandably critical of the District’s decision to purchase and move into a pricey new district office (how “OC” of them) while hundreds of children are being wedged into dilapidated portables and using run-down, filthy bathrooms. Admittedly the former district offices were in need to some improvements. But really, wasn’t there a more equitable solution?

The whole thing just makes my blood boil. There’s always going to be controversy and political sparring where it comes to various strategies for running a school district. It’s an Everyone Knows Best kind of thing. So it goes without saying that there will always be those who question those in power. It’s healthy that way.

When it comes to the actual election of school board officials though, how much do we really know about their qualifications, morals and ethics? I may get slammed for this, but here goes: The act of voting for school district officials is more or less a crap-shoot for the average voter. Most of us make the most educated choice that we can, cross our fingers and push the button.

We really have no idea whether the person we’re voting for is truly up to the task, nor do the majority of us even have an adequate understanding of what the task actually entails. We simply don’t have time to know everything about every candidate that we vote for. Instead we rely on opinions of others that we respect. So what can we really expect? Who can we really blame when something goes wrong and incredibly poor decisions are made?

What I do know is that when I vote for a candidate I expect that person to be honest and ethical. The charges levied against both Fleming and McGill, suggest that there is sufficient reason to question whether these parties have failed in that regard. Along with all the rest of you, I will be waiting to see how this plays out. In the meantime, my fingers remain crossed that the current Supervisor and Board get it right.

Capo Schools attended by Rancho Santa Margarita students are:

Tesoro High School
Las Flores Middle School
Las Flores Elementary School
Tijeras Creek Elementary School
Arroyo Vista Elementary School

Friday, December 21, 2007

Pat Judd, David Bejarano, Pamela Smith, Larry Cunningham and Bertha Lopez spend tax dollars to prevent "trustee areas"

(Click here to see 2008 elections update.)

Is this legal? Are school board members allowed to use public resources to affect elections?

Here is a quote from the minutes of a recent CVESD board meeting:

Regular Meeting
November 13, 2007
7 P.M.

"...President López recessed to public session at 8:47 p.m and reported the following: The Board directed Legal Counsel to take all steps necessary to avoid litigation while educating the County Committee of the negative repercussion of the political actions related to the Petition for Trustee Areas..."

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Education is just like baseball: cheaters prosper

An article in the Los Angeles Times seems to be a perfect response to my previous post about dishonesty in the education establishment.

Gerry Braun didn't think cheating school officials would be brought to justice. I've noted that for years.

But it's not just schools that reward cheating adults. Baseball does it, too.

By Ross Newhan
December 16, 2007

Forget about 'Cheaters never prosper'

Owners still seem willing to pay big salaries to those involved with performance-enhancing drugs...

Of the active players among the 86 cited by Mitchell for involvement with performance-enhancing substances -- and it's impossible to believe that the clubs didn't know or couldn't ask and ascertain who was on that list before it was released -- several already have been gifted with more millions from benevolent owners, subscribing to a "don't ask, don't tell" policy.


* Andy Pettitte, who now confirms the Mitchell Report finding that he received human growth hormone from former trainer Brian McNamee, has already been re-signed by the New York Yankees for $16 million in 2008.

* Eric Gagne, shadowed by drug speculation throughout his rise, fall and revitalization, and cited in the report for HGH orders with the Dodgers, received a 2008 contract for $10 million from the Milwaukee Brewers only a few days ago, a matter of timing that General Manager Doug Melvin now calls a "black eye" for the organization.

* Paul Lo Duca, a virtual Dodgers conduit to former steroids and HGH distributor Kirk Radomski, according to the report, was recently signed to a 2008 contract for $5 million by the Washington Nationals.

* Jose Guillen, cited by the report for ordering steroids and HGH, was signed to a three-year, $36-million contract by the Kansas City Royals, who were aware he would be named in the report and suspended by Major League Baseball at the start of the 2008 season. Guillen has filed a grievance appealing his 15-day suspension.

Grade tampering at Preuss School is minor dishonesty compared to SDCOE

Academic honesty policies are a joke compared to deep corruption at top of education system.

San Diego Union Tribune Columnist Gerry Braun wrote on December 16, 2007, "It's only appropriate, then, to award a big "F/U" to whoever is responsible for the unconscionable failure of ethics at the Preuss charter school...Frankly, I'm not optimistic that justice will be served...Victoria Munoz Richart transformed her bumbling tenure as president of MiraCosta College into a pot of gold, a $1.6 million severance package."

San Diego County Office of Education-Joint Powers Authority deserves an F/U for its dishonesty policy. The SDCOE-JPA is administered by Superintendent Randolph Ward and his assistant superintendent Lora Duzyk. They have seen fit to keep Diane Crosier as director of the JPA, even though they have long known that Crosier keeps unethical lawyers on her approved lists of lawyers. Crosier helps her insurance broker Keenan and Associates make money by short-circuiting the justice system to help school districts get away with wrongdoing.

Compared to this, the big brouhaha of changed grades at UCSD's Preuss School seems like child's play to me.

The real scandal in schools is not the grades that are given, but the fact that so few students get a good education. With insurance companies, bogus repackaged education program businesses, and conservative religious leaders on the right, teachers unions on the left, and politicians on the right and left jockeying for personal power, the entire system is at a complete standstill.

Former "Principal of the Year" Doris Alvarez is apparently the unethical administrator in the Preuss grade scandal, but I don't think she's any less ethical than many other popular principals.

One of the straightest paths to popularity in school administration is to be a people pleaser, especially to people higher up than you. Personal politics is one of the driving forces in education.

The cure? A lot more openness and honesty. Especially when required by a court of law, SDCOE-JPA lawyers need to start revealing the truth about what's happening in schools. Instead, they hide behind the stone wall set up by SDCOE, insurance companies, and school districts. Sadly, this stone wall is respected by the California state courts, whose judges, particularly in the court of appeal, think schools should not have to answer to the law.

This arbitrary power is the enemy of a meritocracy, and is one of the reasons that schools are not meritocracies, but rather political arenas where far too many teachers, administrators, and board members spend their time jockeying for money and personal power instead of honestly dealing with problems.

San Diego County's school system needs to get rid of Diane Crosier and her stable of lawyers and school superintendents who ignore the law.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Chula Vista teacher wins $1 million for gender discrimination

For news about the Danielle Coziahr v. CVESD lawsuit, click HERE.

Ann Folting is now a third grade teacher at Castle Park Elementary

All the efforts of the "Castle Park Family" to prevent principal Ollie Matos from instituting a more efficient use of an experienced teacher caused a lot of turmoil and cost a lot of money, but the computer teacher is now teaching third grade.

What did the Castle Park teachers accomplish?

They let Superintendent Lowell Billings know that he had seriously underestimated the danger of covering up their crimes in the Maura Larkins case. The district had empowered them tremendously, and rewarded them for dishonesty.

When they turned on the district and Lowell Billings himself, it seems to have come as a great shock to Lowell. He became more hands-off than ever, while going around talking about his "hands-on" approach to his job.

Is the teacher culture at Castle Park Elementary still one of secrecy? Obviously. But the teachers who are there now have learned that they might be able to push Lowell Billings around, but Carlos Ulloa seems to be another story.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Missing canoeist who collected his own life insurance in England: Is the huband who planned it more guilty than the wife who did it?

Evil people couldn't prevail in this world if they didn't have followers. I think leaders and those who obey them are equally guilty.

U.K. Police Arrest Fraud Suspect's Wife

The Associated Press
Sunday, December 9, 2007; 5:34 PM

MANCHESTER, England -- Police arrested a British woman on suspicion of fraud Sunday after she claimed her husband died five years earlier in a canoeing accident and cashed in his life insurance. The husband reappeared last weekend.

British police arrested Anne Darwin, 55, once her flight from Atlanta touched down at Manchester airport. They said they hoped she could shed new light on her husband's whereabouts since he was declared officially dead from a capsized canoe in the North Sea in 2002.

Anne Darwin, left, the wife of John Darwin, the canoeist who turned up after being presumed dead leaves the police station at Manchester Airport, Manchester, England, Sunday, Dec. 9, 2007, after being arrested on her return to the country from Panama. British police awaiting Anne Darwin's arrival on an overnight flight from Atlanta, Georgia, arrested her shortly after her plane touched down Sunday morning at Manchester's airport, according to Cleveland Police, who are investigating the case.

She was undergoing a medical examination Sunday after being transferred to Cleveland, a region about 250 miles north of London where she would likely be questioned Monday in the investigation.

John Darwin, 57, turned up in London last weekend. He walked into a police station and claimed to have amnesia. He was charged Saturday with fraud and acquiring a passport in a false name, and will appear in court Monday.

Detectives have said they hope to learn how Darwin allegedly hid himself for five years and maintained contact with his wife after his staged death, and how they apparently came to be photographed together in Panama. His wife had been living there in recent months, but left the Central American country on Wednesday.

Two British newspapers, the Daily Mirror and Daily Mail, claimed to have interviewed the woman repeatedly since her husband's appearance. The newspapers quoted her as saying the couple had tens of thousands of dollars of debts.

The papers quoted her as saying her husband told her the only one way out of debt was to fake his death and that she had pleaded with him not to do it.

According to the newspapers' account, Darwin's wife said she had not expected her husband to go through with the plan _ and genuinely thought he was dead when he disappeared. But a year later, her husband came knocking at her door.

The newspapers said she told them her husband pressured her to keep his reappearance a secret so he could have himself declared dead. That would allow her to collect about $50,000 in life insurance and lift the burden of her mortgage.

They quoted her as saying that after authorities officially declared him dead, her husband moved in with her and hid in a small room reached through a concealed hole in their bedroom, and that he hid in the house for three years.

According to the newspapers, she said the two moved to Panama this year and that her husband was tired of living in hiding and decided to return to Britain, claiming to have forgotten what had happened to him.

The Daily Mirror published a photograph of the couple, apparently taken with a real estate agent in Panama and published on the company's Web site.

Police said they are in contact with the couple's two sons, who insist they had no idea their father was still alive and want nothing more to do with their parents.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

CVESD's newest board members quietly goes along with wrongdoing

CVESD board member David Bejarano

You might think a former police chief would raise a ruckus over spending tax dollars to perpetrate frauds on the court.

Or you might not.

At any rate, former San Diego police chief David Bejarano seems happy to be led by the nose by the CVESD board, which includes two nominal Democrats, Pamela Smith and Bertha Lopez, but for years has voted 5-0 to support a strict right-wing agenda.

Lowell Billings admits he doesn't do his job

In July 2007, CVESD Superintendent Lowell Billings explained why he is paid so much money:

"I think a big part of it has to do with accountability,” said Chula Vista Superintendent Lowell Billings, when asked by Channel 10 News why the taxpayers give him $205,000 per year to run Chula Vista Elementary School District.

But on the witness stand in the Danielle Cozaihr case yesterday, Billings admitted that he does nothing to make sure that adminstrators in CVESD are following the law, and that he really doesn't know what is going on at district schools.

Clearly, this man should not be working for a public entity. Billings has spent millions of tax dollars for lawyers to help cover up wrongdoing at CVESD. Billings, and his Assistant Superintendent Tom Cruz, and his law-breaking principal Alex Cortes should all have been fired long before this. The problem is that the school board is just as contemptuous of the law as these administrators are. Pamela Smith, Cheryl Cox/David Bejarano, Larry Cunningham, Patrick Judd and Bertha Lopez had been covering up crimes before these administrators moved into their current positions.

CVESD has two bullying programs: the one they talk about, and the one they don't

Chula Vista Elementary School District boasts about its program that solves students conflicts by talking them through.

CVESD has a different program for adults. It involves strict silence. The target of the bully isn't told about secret attacks. She never hears the allegations. No one ever asks for her side of the story. And she is usually one of the best and brightest teachers in the district. At the same time, incompetent and dishonest teachers remain in their positions.

Top district administrators and the school board don't ask what the truth of the matter is. They simply dismiss the victim of the attack from employment. And then their lawyers spend tax dollars to defend the indefensible, instead of paying those tax dollars to the people who should get them: employees and students.

Today is the final day of arguments in San Diego Superior Court in the Danielle Cozaihr case, a case that fits the mold perfectly. Superintendent Lowell Billings testified yesterday, making clear that he makes no personnel decisions himself, and then turning around and saying that he is responsible for the decisions. He sounded like an uninvolved figurehead who thinks he's among the highest paid public employees in the county simply because he goes around being seen (apparently without seeing anything, or at least not remembering what he sees.)

Five years ago, it seemed that Superintendent Libia Gil and Asst. Superintendent Richard Werlin were the problem. They were pushed out, and replaced with new faces.

Now it's clear that Lowell Billings and Tom Cruz, their replacements, are equally incompetent and mean-spirited.

How can this be? CVESD has a board of trustees consisting of five clones of George W. Bush: they all try to stay as ignorant as possible, and they think they are so morally superior that no matter what they do, God will approve.

This may be something that the "Christian" board members haven't thought of, or haven't cared about: they have been given very specific instuctions: "Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor." This is an admonition that Pamela Smith, Cheryl Cox/David Bejarano, Bertha Lopez, Pat Judd, and Larry Cunningham disobey everytime they pay their lawyers to perpetrate a fraud on the court.

Who are the lawyers who have helped CVESD perpetrate frauds on the court?

They are:
Pamela Dempsey, Esquire
(Cozaihr case, and hiding public records);
Mark Bresee, also of Parham & Rajcic;
and Daniel Shinoff,
Jeffery Morris,
and Kelly Angell Minnehan
of Stutz, Artiano Shinoff & Holtz.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Why is CVE trying to hide the identities of its president and VP?

I knew that Chula Vista Educators had just last week finished counting the votes after its second election in one year to choose a vice president.

I called them up this morning. A cheery woman's voice greeted me, "CVE!"

"I was wondering, who is the new vice-president of CVE?"

Without missing a beat, the woman said, "Peg Myers."

"I thought she was the president," I said.

Also without missing a beat, the woman said, "Yes, she is."

Clearly, this woman had a well-prepared script.

"Then who is the vice-president?" I asked.

"Monica Sorenson."

I thanked her, and began to wonder why CVE is trying to pretend that Jim Groth is still president (he was reelected president in 2007, a few months ago), and that Peggie Myers is still his vice president (she was elected vice president a few months ago). Jim Groth resigned after a couple of months to take a seat on the California Teachers Association board of directors.

I must assume that Peggie Myers told the receptionist to try to hide the truth. Peggie Myers is a forceful advocate for hiding the truth. When she was CVE representative for Castle Park Elementary, she made it clear that teachers had to report to her any contact they had with me. She worked hard to make sure that the truth was kept under wraps about crimes committed at the school. But she didn't succeed despite tremendous effort.

Now Myers seems to think that by continuing to cover up facts that can not be covered up, she will avoid having to deal with the fallout from her past actions. She and Jim Groth and Monica Sorenson would be wiser to quit pretending, and simply apologize and repair the harm they've done.

Monica Sorenson, by the way, was a lawyer (though currently inactive), so perhaps she's had a lot of practice at hiding information. It would appear that this is what the teachers of Chula Vista want.

And we wonder why young people grow up today without moral compasses.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Chula Vista Educators helps the friends of union leaders

It might seem odd that CVE would help teachers like Robin Donlan, Gina Boyd, and Jim Groth commit and cover up crimes.

But it seems less strange when we consider that CVE spent $17,000 for legal fees for former CVE President Frank Luzzaro to dispute one day's pay.

There is a long history of CVE helping people with close connections to the CVE office. That's why CVE was able to rationalize its criminal actions against a teacher. They figured they were protecting other teachers!

When they had to choose between violating the law again and again, and letting the truth come out, every member of the board of directors helped to commit and cover up wrongdoing.

But what if you're not in a protected group?

I don't belong to a protected group, so CTA didn't think it had to help me when I was targeted by teachers, administrators, union leaders and board members (including Cheryl Cox) who wanted to hide their own crimes.

Dawn Murray's story was horrible. Thank goodness it was finally finished in court. My case was thrown out of court because I didn't file a motion to compel in time.

Here are the first paragraphs of a San Diego Reader story about teacher Dawn Murray. Dawn, if you're out there, what do you think of CTA's actions in the Castle Park Elementary fiasco?

Published on May 20, 1999
A Teacher's Odyssey
By Linnea Due

Oceanside is about as far as you can go in North County without enlisting. Fact is, many people in Oceanside have enlisted, if only indirectly, via their parents. Biology teacher Dawn Murray says that few of the kids who start ninth grade at Oceanside High are still in town by the time graduation rolls around, so she figures she has a maximum of one year to transmit something vital to each student. Murray signed on to teach biology -- and she still does, to the accompaniment of national awards -- but lately the circumstances of her life have added something unexpected to the curriculum: Murray has found herself needing to demonstrate a blend of self-respect and fortitude that should come in handy for her mostly minority students.

Up about a mile from the beachfront, from sidewalks crammed with short-haired guys in pastel-striped short-sleeve shirts, barber shops advertising regulation cuts, and clothing stores specializing in surplus, lies Oceanside High--the underdog school, home of the Pirates. Single-story stucco buildings are strewn across the rise of the hill like a necklace tossed carelessly on a dressing table. The apricot-colored school is faded, grown comfortable with age, with no newfangled architecture to make these '50s ranchers look shabbier than they do already.

It seems like a funny place for someone from Upstate New York to end up, but Oceanside High has been Dawn Murray's home for 16 years, since she got her first teaching job at age 22. "Oceanside is not a school that people die to teach at," she quips. She ticks off the reasons why: gang activity, low test scores, the ancient school, students made transient by military parents. Still, says Murray, "They're good kids, and they need good teachers." It's a simple statement that has made Murray's life a hell. If you count emotional exhaustion as a sort of death, Murray has indeed died to teach at Oceanside.

It started in 1993, when Murray was passed over for a promotion. Discreet inquiries finally netted the reason: the hiring committee had heard Murray was a lesbian. Rumors began circulating around the campus, spread by security and custodial staff: Murray was having sex with a female teacher on the floor, Murray was passionately kissing an employee on school grounds, Murray was "fraternizing on campus during school hours" with another employee. None of this was missed by sharp-eared kids, and Murray did her best to fight, filing complaints with the principal and assistant principal, in each case demonstrating that the rumors were false.

But while she successfully fought each accusation, the employees conducting the rumor mill weren't fired or reprimanded, and the closeted Murray became progressively more isolated and dismayed. Conservative faculty members made disparaging remarks at meetings, formerly friendly colleagues shunned Murray in the hall but phoned her up at night pledging support, and the principal outted her at an in-service on racial discrimination. That meeting turned into such a free-for-all that the facilitator stopped the training. "I didn't say a word," Murray says now. "People were pushing me into a corner and hassling me to come out, but you have to understand, when that first accusation came in, it frightened the hell out of me. People were talking about my sexual orientation -- well, I didn't talk about it."

During the same period, Murray was racking up national awards. She won a fellowship from Princeton and in 1995 was named Outstanding Biology Teacher of the Year. "I could have gone anywhere in the country and written my own ticket," Murray says. She stayed.

"Here's what happened," she explains. "On one of the first days of school, I was asking people's names, and one girl said her name was Patty. A kid in the back spoke up. 'Your name's not Patty, your name's lesbian. I said to him, 'Why do you think calling someone a lesbian would hurt her?' and he said, 'Well, it hurt you, didn't it?' I realized that if I left they would learn that you could run someone out by intimidating them, and I was determined these kids would not learn that from me.

Chula Vista's Sunroad?

Sweetwater River
Here is the opening paragraph of an article in the San Diego Reader. This excellent article documents relationships between the Cox, McMillan and other developer collaboratives.

By Susan Luzaro
August 23, 2007

On any given day, it's difficult to tell who works for the residents of Chula Vista and who works for private industry. A proposed residential development by CV 42 Investments, LLC, represented by Bill Ostrem, who is also the president of EastLake Development Company, lays bare the diseased underbelly of the problem. The development, approximately 550 homes in the lower Sweetwater Valley, has been christened Riverwalk, but a more appropriate name would be Freewaywalk, because the project's 61 acres of low-lying land are bounded by I-805 and SR54.

Read the rest of the article at:

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Jim Groth and Peggie Myers play yet another trick on Chula Vista teachers

Peggie Myers is the new president of Chula Vista Educators. Readers may remember Ms. Myers for her role in the Castle Park Elementary fiasco.

Teachers re-elected longtime president Jim Groth, but he had other plans. He moved on the the Board of Directors of California Teachers Association, where he can continue to work closely with lead attorney Beverly Tucker, who helped him and Ms. Myers cover up illegal activities at CVESD.

So Peggie Myers, who had been elected vice-president, became president.

Teachers will be asked to vote for a new vice-president. How about Robin Donlan, to keep the old gang together?

See all posts about Peg Myers.

Investigation shows CVESD is hiding information

Lowell Billings, CVESD Superintendent

For years I've been trying to get Chula Vista Elementary School District to follow the law regarding release of public information.

At last I've got some help.

A non-profit law firm called Public Advocates examined twenty school districts in California and found that nineteen of them were ignoring the law. Public Advocates has threatened to sue CVESD and the seven other scofflaws who were most blatantlly out of compliance with the law.

Lowell Billings, Superintendent of CVESD, used the time-honored "I was unaware" excuse.

Right, Lowell. And you were unaware of my public records requests, too, I suppose.

"It's so blatantly out of compliance that it just drew our attention," said Guillermo Mayer, Public Advocates attorney.

But I still haven't found anyone to help find out how much CVESD has spent on lawyers.

Randall Ward, SDCOE Superintendent
San Diego County Office of Education Superintendent Randolph Ward has many good traits, but openness isn't one of them. Oakland Unified, the district he headed until he came to San Diego a year ago, has been sued by Public Advocates. Randy Ward has ignored the public records requests I have sent to SDCOE.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Michael Hersh says CTA will not change

CTA Legal Dept
Michael Hersh

Hi Michael:

My goodness, you’re not your old self lately! You’ve been following a more imaginative course of action than CTA’s time-honored practice of continually insisting that you weren’t properly served. I was impressed by your filing responses to my lawsuit when you knew I was working on a first amended complaint, and I didn’t plan to serve the original complaint. Tricky! Who gave you that idea?

I called up the court today and found out that you filed pleadings on July 10, 2007 and July 13, 2007. Apparently the court has not filed my motion to dismiss (enclosed) or your motion to declare me a vexatious litigant. But I’m sure it will all get straightened out. There are many different ways to deal with this case, all of which, I trust, will eventually lead to good outcomes for everyone.

I will argue, of course, that you have no right to attorney’s fees or court costs when you were not even served with a summons. It was your choice, your wish, done for your own purposes.

I will also argue that you left out the most significant case of all in terms of vexatious litigants: my suit against Kathleen Elton for filing a false police report. That suit was settled in my favor for $75,000, as you well know, and precludes my being labeled a vexatious litigant.

Have your new advisors ever mentioned that you might want to deal with true facts in this case? Do you really think you can keep the truth hidden forever by continually playing legal games? Are you really that cynical about the justice system? Are you completely convinced that you and Beverly can hide your crimes indefinitely?

Beverly Tucker and CTA certainly made vexatious litigants of themselves in the Turlock case. That case demonstrated how little CTA cares about kids, how much it cares about power, and what a pathetic lapdog Bob Thompson is to Beverly Tucker.

The current case is just a small part of a larger battle between those who want education to be fixed, and those who want to maintain the status quo in the vastly powerful California Teachers Association, which, you once told me, “is not going to change.”

Yours truly,
Maura Larkins

[Note: The Turlock case was about CTA members wearing buttons in the classroom to campaign against the efforts of teachers to have another union replace CTA in the Turlock School District. The administrative law judge at the Public Employees Relations Board (PERB) ruled against the teachers. The judge's decision was clearly correct, since the California Court of Appeal had decided the question of campaign buttons in the classroom in a case from San Diego. But the PERB board overruled its own judge. When Turlock School District appealed, Bob Thompson, general counsel at PERB joined with CTA head lawyer Beverly Tucker to fight the appeal. They lost.

But Bob Thompson and Beverly Tucker did prove that they care more about the power of those who control CTA than they care about the taxpayers or children of California. How did they prove this? They used tax dollars to fight this self-serving lawsuit during the 2003 budget crisis in California.

Bev and Bob lost; the decision is HERE. So what did they do then? They appealed to the state supreme court and lost again. These are truly vexatious litigants.]

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Does Chula Vista need new leadership?

I found this interesting comment about the Chula Vista Gaylord project on Scott Lewis' blog on Voice of San Diego.

"Maggie" wrote on July 7, 2007:

There are other factors about this project's demise that many aren't taking into consideration, much of which VoSD helped uncover: The failure of the LLC created to manage the project, in which Gaylord had 10% ownership, was killed.

The only Chula Vista staffer involved, Laurie Madigan, was exposed for involving her husband's business partners in the deal.

The City Manager, Dave Rowland, who initiated the deal was fired and it took the City a year to hire a replacement. Political leadership was not at the table to facilitate stakeholder negotiations.

And lastly, but probably most importantly, the EIR port staff and Laurie Madigan produced was insufficient and would never have past muster with the Coastal Commission and Statelands Commission.

And labor wasn't smart enough to realize they were being baitd and eventually faulted for killing the deal. This deal was done a long time ago!

Does Cheryl Cox need to sit in on a 6th grade vocabulary lesson?

Former CVESD board member Cheryl Cox, who is now mayor of Chula Vista, has the attitude that the wonderful developer who was going to put a huge hotel on the Chula Vista bayfront gathered his marbles and went home because the unions were too demanding. Gaylord Entertainment said that union demands would add $50 to $75 million in costs to the project. Cheryl Cox failed to point out that public agencies were planning on investing $308 million in the project as part of the deal, and that agreeing to union demands would mean that the deal would only give Gaylord $233 to $258 sheer profit at the outset.

Cheryl Cox is being criticized for taking the developers side in this matter. Rob Davis of Voice of San Diego reported that U.S. Rep. Bob Filner, D-Chula Vista, said he was "shocked at the lackadaisical role Cox had taken in negotiations and lambasted her for turning labor leaders into scapegoats for Gaylord's withdrawal.

"It's not the mayor's job to take the side of Gaylord versus labor," Filner said. "It's the mayor's job to ... help that agreement come to pass. She was aloof until the end here. I don’t think that's leadership. And I was shocked by that."

"Cox responded that she did not believe it was her role to be involved as a negotiator.

""I'm a little perplexed by his comments," Cox said of Filner."

Poor Cheryl seems always to be perplexed. She's always claiming she wasn't invovled with the current scandal, and knows nothing about it.

Last night on San Diego's Channel 8 News I heard Cheryl say that the union "blackmailed" Gaylord. That's fascinating, Cheryl. What was the dirty secret that the union was holding over Gaylord's head? it possible that Cheryl doesn't know the meaning of the word "blackmail?" Perhaps Cheryl is trying to say that the union "made demands of" Gaylord. That's right, Cheryl. That's what unions do. Individual workers can't make demands of huge corportations, so the workers unite and then they make demands. That's how it works. Unions don't just demand money, Cheryl. They also demand worker safety. And in this case, they demanded that Gaylord use local workers. That's apparently where the negotiations broke down. What have you got against Chula Vista workers, Cheryl? Why was that an unacceptable demand?

Friday, July 06, 2007

Chula Vista Educators' past president Gina Boyd in hiding?

It appears that former CVE president Gina Boyd is hiding out in Seattle, thinking that I can't serve a summons on her when she's up there. She truly believes she's going to get away with her criminal actions against a union member she was pretending to represent. I don't know for sure what the future holds, but I believe it's quite likely that the truth will come out in this matter.

I wonder if Gina is living in a bunker in Seattle, like a small time Dick Cheney. She and Cheney have a lot in common: they seem to consider themselves to be a separate, untouchable branch of government, one that doesn't have to answer to the justice system. Still, no one who was involved in my case, not even Gina Boyd, demonstrated more contempt for the justice system than Peggie Myers. She didn't even try to pretend that she had any respect for the Superior Court or the laws of California.

Did you know that 54% of Americans think Cheney should be impeached? The American public is so fickle in its affections, isn't it? You don't think that they could also turn against CTA, do you?

Update: It appears that Ms. Boyd came back to San Diego a few days after I posted the above post.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Why did CVESD's Lowell Billings approve this fraudulent document?


When he was Assistant Superintendent for Business Services at Chula Vista Elementary School District, current Superintendent Lowell Billings ignored a teacher's report that she had been tricked by a man who had been chosen by the district to go into classrooms and talk to teachers about investing. The man was Anthony Pavia.

Fortunately, the teacher was able to get her money out of the account that had been sold to her as a different type of investment.

But it turned out to be a double swindle. It wasn't until much later that the teacher discovered that money was being taken out of her paycheck every month for an account which she had specifically disapproved. Pavia presented the teacher with a form that had two companies names written on it. The teacher had never expressed any interest in the first company. She did want to invest in the second company.

Pavia told the teacher that he didn't have any extra forms, so she would have to cross out and intital the name of the company she didn't want. Then he said the company she did want would also have to be crossed out and initialed and its name had to be rewritten on the first line, above the crossed-out words.

Then came the real fraud.

Without the teacher's knowledge, Pavia (or his assistant) wrote in the name of the company the teacher did not want. Lowell Billings approved this bizarre document, and money started flowing out of the teacher's paycheck every month. She didn't notice it for a long time, because she was not in the habit of carefully examining her pay stubs.

How many such documents, with both first and second lines scribbled out, did Lowell Billings approve? How many complaints did he get from teachers? Why did he refuse to talk to teachers who complained? Did Billings have an account with Anthony Pavia that gave Billings financial advantages in return for looking the other way as Pavia swindled teachers?

When she reported the second swindle, Lowell Billings again refused to talk to the teacher. Billings even refused, until after repeated requests, to give her a copy of the document that had allowed the monthly withdrawals from her paycheck.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Werlin revealed that Linda Watson committed perjury

Hearing transcript reveals perjury at CVESD

Former Assistant Superintendent Richard Werlin had a little trouble sticking to his script at the Office of Administrative Hearings.

Castle Park Elementary teacher Linda Watson swore under oath that she was not one of the two teachers who called Richard Werlin at his home on Saturday night February 10, 2001 and claimed Maura Larkins might kill them. She and current Chula Vista Educators president Jim Groth filed a grievance to prevent Werlin from revealing the truth to Linda Watson's victim.

Werlin agreed to hide Watson's involvement. But a story becomes complicated once you start lying.

Under oath, Werlin revealed that Linda Watson was deeply involved at a very early time in the illegal actions against Maura Larkins.

On page 59 line 14 through page 60 line 5, of the January 6, 2003 Office of Administrative Hearings transcript, Werlin was asked:

Question: And after this [Feb. 12, 2001] meeting with Maura Larkins and others, subsequent to the phone call that you received, did you follow up conducting addition inquiry or investigation at Castle Park?

Answer: Yes.

Question: And can you describe generally what you did?

Answer: We had numerous conversations with the principal where we had an opportunity to ask her about her perception of the relationship that Maura had with Mrs. Hamilton. We also had a chance to speak with Ms. Hamilton again who continued to be very concerned for her welfare, very concerned for her safety, and several other teachers had come up and talked with me wile I was at the site about similar concerns.

Question: Do you recall who some of those teachers were?

Answer: Linda Watson, Rick Denmon, librarian Ms. Scharmach.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

The Supreme Court says race can't be used to decide where kids go to school

Yesterday the Supreme Court overturned the historic Brown v. Board of Education decision. The court now says race can't be used to decide where kids go to school, except in very limited circumstances.

This is shocking, in that it shows so little respect for precedent. Now that Sandra Day O'Conner is gone, moderation seems to have gone out the window. What will happen now? It seems likely that schools will become very segregated very quickly.

But maybe it's not all bad. Just think, students of America: now you don't have to travel as far for a bad education!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

To Sharon Jones, board member, SDCOE

You have responsibility for the way the JPA is administered since the superintendent of SDCOE administers the JPA. Why is Diane Crosier still in charge after wasting so much money meant for children, and channelling it to lawyers in return for covering up wrongdoing?
Maura Larkins

Monday, June 25, 2007

Cheryl Cox had nothing to do with it

You might think that our own Cheryl Cox, former CVESD trustee and now mayor of Chula Vista, would somehow be in charge of what the City of Chula Vista does. Cheryl says it isn't so.

She might have had something to do with the choice of John Witt, former San Diego city attorney, as a special counsel for Chula Vista. But she has nothing to do with the fact that he is suing city council candidate Patty Chavez for $100,000 because she lent herself $11,000 for her campaign and didn't report it to her opponent, Rudy Ramirez.

You might think Rudy Ramirez has something to do with this draconian attack on a housewife who ran for office. After all, he might want to strike some fear into her so she won't dare run against him again. Rudy himself is under investigation, he says. He claims he will be vindicated. Somehow, I think he's right. I don't imagine John Witt feels the same way about Ramirez that he does about Chavez.

Cheryl Cox says she's formed a committee to look at the rules.

How about a committee to look at how the rules are enforced, Cheryl? You've made it clear that you believe attorneys who work for cities should represent the interests of the elected officials. Somehow, I don't think you've changed your mind about that.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Innocent lacrosse players reach settlement with Duke University

(CNN) -- Duke University has reached an undisclosed settlement with three former lacrosse players who were falsely accused of rape, the school announced Monday.

"This past year has been hard for many people who care about Duke -- for students, faculty, staff, alumni, families and friends -- and for the three students and their families most of all," the Duke board of trustees said in a written statement.

The three students posted a statement on Duke's Web site saying, "We hope that today's resolution will begin to bring the Duke family back together again, and we look forward to working with the university to develop and implement initiatives that will prevent similar injustices and ensure that the lessons of last year are never forgotten."

David Evans, Collin Finnerty and Reade Seligmann were accused of sexually assaulting an escort-service dancer at a party in March 2006.

North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper reviewed the case and exonerated the three men in April 2007, saying the charges never should have been brought against them.

District attorney disbarred for unethical behavior

The prosecutor who brought those charges, Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong, was disbarred Saturday by a disciplinary panel that said he violated the majority of at least 19 ethics offenses in prosecuting the case.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Why did Pat Judd, Pam Smith, Larry Cunningham and Bertha Lopez foment hysteria about violence at Castle Park Elementary?



After she was falsely accused, Maura Larkins, teacher at Castle Park Elementary, voluntarily spent hundreds of dollars to get a fitness for duty examination by a psychiatrist. The doctor faxed his report to CVESD.

Why did Cheryl Cox and the CVESD board and their attorneys Daniel Shinoff and Kelly Angell continue to foment hysteria at Castle Park Elementary even after receiving this doctor's letter in August 2001?

Answer: They wanted to smear Maura Larkins in order to prevent her from revealing their violations of law. Was this smart? It would have been smarter to retract the false accusations and apologize. Instead, they stopped Maura Larkins pay (in violation of the contract) and refused to grant her the hearing to which she was entitled (also in violation of the contract).

Robin Donlan (who became famous in 2004 as one of the San Diego Union-Tribune's "Castle Park Five," then in 2007 for claiming that she had no idea how her school teacher husband suddenly came to possess 7 million dollars) also worked hard, along with her personal friend, Chula Vista Educators' President Gina Boyd, and Beverly Tucker of the California Teachers Association, to smear Larkins.

But it appears that there was another reason for Cheryl Cox's support of violations of law and the contract: she wanted to get rid of Superintendent Libia Gil.

In May 2002 Cox was willing to violate yet one more law against Maura Larkins, Labor Code 1102.5, in order to get rid of Libia Gil. Cox and Bertha Lopez went along with the BIG THREE, PATRICK JUDD, PAMELA SMITH, AND LARRY CUNNINGHAM, and voted to dismiss Maura Larkins less than two months after Larkins filed suit against the district.

Cox and Lopez got something in return: Libia Gil's resignation.

Clearly, these people felt so certain that they were above the law, that they were not afraid to flagrantly violate it.

Monday, June 11, 2007

The self-righteous Mr. James L. Camblos

A Virginia woman and her ex-husband will spend 27 months in prison for allowing her son’s16-year-old friends to drink beer at a sleepover. Elisa Kelly’s reason for providing the beer was that she didn’t want the kids to drive to get alcohol. About half of the kids at the sleepover drank no alcohol at all.

Ryan Kenty, Elisa’s son, was so distraught about his mother’s situation, for which he felt guilty, that he dropped out of high school. Ryan’s younger brother, now 16, will not have his mother around for quite a while. It seems unlikely that anyone’s life has been improved by the government’s actions in this case.

Still, Albemarle County Commonwealth's Attorney James L. Camblos III isn’t feeling the family’s pain. It would appear that he didn’t become a public servant in order to make life better for other people, but to make life better for himself. This seems like another case where the justice system is being abused by someone with a pathological need to inflict pain. Camblos knows that a good way to get people to vote is by identifying an evil, and working everyone into a frenzy over it. Certainly underage drinking is a problem, but it’s also a reality, and Mr. Camblos’ actions are not likely to stop 16-year-olds from drinking. Camblos will just make it more likely that they’ll drive somewhere to get their alcohol.

Daniela Deane of the Washington Post writes:

“"No one left the party," said Kelly, 42, who collected car keys that night almost five years ago to prevent anyone from leaving. "No one was hurt. No one drove anywhere. I really don't think I deserve to go to jail for this long."

“Kelly said she's "scared" to go to the Albemarle Charlottesville Regional Jail, where each of her sons will be able to visit her only once a month for 15 minutes at a time, and worried about how her sons will fare without her. "I'm going to miss the end of Brandon's high school," she said of her 16-year-old son, choking back tears.

“After the incident, Ryan dropped out of high school, where he was an athlete and a member of the school's basketball team, saying he couldn't take the constant attention. He shelved plans to attend college and now works full time at UPS. The brothers will live nearby with their father, Marc Kenty, until their mother is released.”

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Truth v. Money in CVESD

In recent years, failure and incompetence have been trounced by money at the ballot box. But reality may be making a comeback.

(Paraphrasing Jonathan Alter, "The Political Power of Truth," Newsweek Feb. 6, 2006

Sunday, June 03, 2007

An Open Letter to Steve Padilla

Dear Mr. Padilla:

Since you have a very young daughter, it seems to me that you might be interested in the California educational system. Republicans use school board positions to make sure that education is limited, in most classrooms, to rote skills and memorization. In other words, our kids are getting a nineteenth century education. In 2004, Chula Vista Elementary School District trustee Patrick Judd stated in the Chula Vista Star-News that education hasn't changed much in a hundred years. He said his interest was in building new schools. I think his real interest is in making friends with developers so they'll keep his campaign coffers filled.

The best and brightest teachers are systematically eliminated in many schools. Castle Park Elementary is a shameful example of this.

People who have achieved power in the educational system tend to focus on their personal goals, not the goal of teaching children. This includes those who control the California Teachers Association and Chula Vista Educators. Yes, Democrats work with Republicans in education to protect their own careers. The education of children is a secondary concern to most of these people.

Do you have the courage to challenge corrupt Democrats in the educational system? I believe you would have prevailed over Cheryl Cox in the last election for mayor of Chula Vista if you had dared to expose her wrongdoing as a school board member.

By the way, I must apologize, as a citizen of San Diego County, for the shocking actions of D.A. Bonnie Dumanis against your aide, Jason Moore. I am ashamed to say I voted for her. I thought that Judge Brannigan was an extreme right winger. It turns out that Bonnie Dumanis is an extreme right winger. I believe that Peter O'Toole is calling the shots in the District Attorney's office, because Bonnie Dumanis is afraid he'll run against her if she doesn't kowtow to him.

I believe that Dumanis was forced to beat up Jason Moore as part of her initiation into the inner circle of extreme right-wing politicians, much like teenagers are forced to beat up a complete stranger when they join one of the gangs that Bonnie is supposed to be fighting. Obviously, the target was chosen by the Cheryl Cox campaign. Dumanis has wasted enormous resources on prosecuting Jason Moore, a city employee who took two hours off work. Dumanis' actions have caused Chula Vista to spend over $400,000 on lawyers to represent city employees. This is tax money that has been shamefully misspent.

I also believe your administration was targeted by Dumanis so she could prove she's not soft on gays. She pleases right-wingers by being their token gay official, beating up on gays for them--while no one would think to accuse her of being anti-gay. I sure hope someone who respects the law will run against Dumanis in the next election.

You'll lose a lot of campaign money if you challenge the corrupt California Teachers Association, but you'll be doing the kids of California a big favor.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Gina Boyd Tried Hard to Cover up the Truth

Why did Chula Vista Educators President Gina Boyd refuse to come forward and testify in the Maura Larkins case when Maura Larkins was a member of Chula Vista Educators?

Some hints can be found in Ms. Boyd's deposition.

Why did Gina Boyd's lawyer Michael Hersh write a letter on Gina Boyd's behalf that Boyd would not testify about any actions taken by herself or Chula Vista Educators regarding Maura Larkins?

Why did Gina Boyd refuse to allow Marilyn Sanderson of CTA to represent Maura Larkins when Gina Boyd was representing Linda Watson, Jo Ellen Hamilton, Robin Donlan and other teachers who made allegations against Maura Larkins?

Why did Gina Boyd try for two years to avoid being deposed?

Answer: Gina Boyd, Michael Hersh and CTA's chief counsel Beverly Tucker were trying to cover up crimes committed by Gina Boyd, SCTU executive director Tim O'Neill, and Beverly Tucker
in 2000, 2001, and 2002.

On March 22, 2004 I finally got the chance to ask Gina Boyd some questions.

Through an examination of Gina Boyd's actions as she "represented" me, I had become convinced of Gina Boyd's guilt. A rational analysis of the evidence seemed to admit no other explanation than that Gina Boyd acted as she did, violating law after law, as a result of her illegal receipt of arrest records that did not lead to any charges.

But I wanted to know if there was anything I was missing. Was there something that I didn't know that would point to Gina Boyd's innocence? Was there some exculpatory evidence that I hadn't come across? Did Gina Boyd have some defense other than refusing to discuss her actions as my representative.

Absolutely not. After an hour and a half, Boyd's lawyer Michael Hersh instructed her not to answer questions about her representation of me, or any actions of CTA or CVE. I explained that my entire case rested on what I knew of Boyd's violations of law, and CTA and CVE's violations of law, when they were my representatives. Still, Hersh insisted that his client would not answer any questions about those actions. In fact, Kelly Angell (Minnehan) of Stutz Artiano Shinoff & Holtz, who was representing Richard Werlin, also demanded that Maura Larkins not ask questions about what happened at CVESD.

Gina Boyd and SCTU executive director Tim O'Neill refused to allow Maura Larkins, even though the CVE Bylaws required them to do so, to address the Representative Council and/or Board of Directors of CVE to present a complaint against President Gina Boyd. The corruption of Boyd, O'Neill, and Jim Groth was thus covered up.

However, Maura Larkins informed the members of the Board of Directors individually about Boyd's wrongdoing, and those board members then assisted in covering up the wrongdoing of Boyd, O'Neill, Groth, Beverly Tucker, and Richard Werlin of the CVESD school district.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

CVESD teacher Robin Donlan has changed completely--or has she?

David Washburn of the San Diego Union Tribune wrote on May 18, 2007, regarding the recent lawsuit against Vencent Donlan and his wife Robin Donlan, "...Robin Donlan, who teaches fourth grade at Hilltop Drive Elementary in Chula Vista, is cooperating with federal investigators to an “unprecedented degree.”

Any cooperation at all from Robin Donlan in the investigation of crime is unprecedented, in my experience.

Robin's lawyer David Hiden said "she has waived attorney-client and spousal privileges and agreed to informal interviews."

In a civil lawsuit filed about four years ago against Robin Donlan for misdemeanors committed against Maura Larkins at Castle Park Elementary School District, Robin's entire defense was based on attorney-client privilege. Her argument was that any subject she had ever discussed with her attorney was something she should not have to answer questions about. Robin answered only ONE written interrogatory in San Diego Superior Court case no. 781970, and she answered it EIGHT MONTHS after it was served on her, when she knew that the plaintiff had already found out the answer to the question. (The answer was found by a private investigator at a cost of several hundred dollars.) Robin Donlan's brother, Michael Carlson, who is a sheriff's deputy in Santa Barbara, never answered a single interrogatory, nor showed up for a deposition. But perhaps he could be helpful in the current case. He could tell his sister that he puts people in jail all the time for being in possession of stolen property.

While Robin Colls Donlan's cooperation in answering questions is clearly a brand new behavior, some of her other behavior hasn't changed at all.

Robin ensnared a lot of her friends in her crimes, but they all stood loyally by her, claiming the same attorney-client privilege, and committing felonies to cover up her misdemeanors. Robin, on the other hand, seems to have turned against her husband. That's probably wise, since the FBI might be a bit tougher than Robin's victim in the previous case.

Donlan turned against Chula Vista Elementary School District after it had paid many $100,000's of taxpayer dollars to defend her. The San Diego Union Tribune wrote frequently about her attacks on the school district in 2004 when she was transferred to a new school. The district had to spend EVEN MORE MONEY TO DEFEND ITSELF FROM Robin Donlan, after it had spent so much TO DEFEND HER.

Here's what I'm wondering. If Robin really believed that she had HONESTLY AND GENUINELY come into millions of dollars in wealth, why didn't she pay back the taxpayers for all the money they spent on her? Robin's former lawyer Daniel Shinoff is still living high off taxpayer dollars, but the students of Chula Vista Elementary schools could sure use the money.

Interestingly, today's paper says 30 former officials at Mira Costa College are outraged by the college president, Victoria Richart. It seems she funnelled around a million dollars to Daniel Shinoff and a private investigator and school staff to investigate "the errant, but well-intentioned, actions of a teacher struggling to make her program the best in the state." This quote is from a letter from the 30 former officials.

My own personal opinion is, if a public entity is doing business with Daniel Shinoff or Stutz, Artiano, Shinoff & Holtz, that public entity is probably involved in dirty business. Chula Vista Elementary trustees Cheryl Cox, Bertha Lopez, Pamela Smith, Larry Cunningham and Pat Judd wanted lawyers who would be willing to commit crimes to cover up crimes, so they chose Daniel Shinoff of Stutz and Mark Bresee of Parham & Rajcic.

This is certainly true of Grossmont Cuyamaca Community College, where chancellor Omero Suarez changed his own contract without permission, but the lawless board kept him on. He and Dan Shinoff are apparently doing exactly what the board wants. The board clearly does not value honesty. If it did, how could it get away with violating the law so often?

Friday, May 18, 2007

Bonnie Dumanis, why don't you investigate me?

May 18, 2007

Richard Monroy
Jesus Rodriguez
Bonnie Dumanis
San Diego County District Attorney Office

Dear Sirs and Madam:

Yesterday I received a letter from Richard Monroy, dated May 10, 2007. I am deeply concerned by a sentence in the last paragraph: “Our office cannot be used in civil disputes to leverage one side against another.”

Mr. Monroy seems to imply that my complaint constituted an attempt at extortion. If you believe that, Mr. Monroy, you have an obligation to investigate ME.

Of course, after Bonnie Dumanis so pointedly ignored my complaint about Richard Werlin in February 2005, Mr. Monroy’s ugly implication seems pretty silly. My report of a very serious crime resulted in absolutely no action from the San Diego District Attorney. I couldn’t extort a corroded cent out of Cheryl Cox and her powerful associates even if I wanted to. They, not I, are able to dictate who gets investigated. They, not I, are capable of committing extortion.

In fact, Cheryl Cox and her associates committed extortion when they had me threatened by law enforcement when I filed a PERB charge, and again when I filed a San Diego Superior Court lawsuit. Every time I tried to exercise my rights under the law, Cheryl Cox and her associates intimidated me in every way they could.

Finally, Cheryl Cox and every member of the Chula Vista Elementary School District Board violated Labor Code 1102.5 by firing me for reporting wrongdoing. Their dismissal decision clearly states that I was fired for filing a lawsuit and grievances. They wanted my silence and my livelihood. All they got was my livelihood.

Mr. Monroy’s discussion of extortion is particularly bogus because it would be impossible for a person like me who is not politically-connected to cause the prosecution of defendants are very politically connected. Cheryl Cox’s campaign can get a prosecution started against a low-level employee like Jason Moore for taking two hours off work, but I can’t get a prosecution started against Cheryl Cox. I knew long before I made my first complaint about Richard Werlin that the San Diego District Attorney would never investigate, much less prosecute, Cheryl Cox and her criminal co-conspirators.

Mr. Monroy’s letter says, “Experience has shown that there are always two sides to each story.” And the Cheryl Cox side is the only one you are interested in, isn’t it? My side gets short shrift from the D.A.’s office. It’s obvious that the investigation of crimes committed by Cheryl Cox and her associates was completely ruled out by your office before you ever received any communication from me.

Please don’t hesitate to call me in the unlikely event that you have any questions about this matter.

Yours truly,
Maura Larkins

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Bless you, Linda Lozito and Cathy Travalos

For years I've intended to put Richard Werlin's deposition on the Internet, along with the contradictory testimony of others, but I never got around to it.

Now that Linda Lozito and Cathy Travalos are trying to make Werlin's false allegations stick to me, I am motivated to get my scanner out and do the job.

This morning I hobbled out to my storage room on my broken ankle, and got Werlin's deposition. I fell on Cowles Mountain in San Diego on April 7, and got lifted off in a helicopter. It was almost worth having 17 screws and three plates in my ankle to experience such a terrific ride. It was just like on TV, except that I hadn't expected to whirl around and around as I was winched up to the helicopter. But that was great, too.

Now I'm installing the scanner software on my little PC laptop. It's going to be a slow precedure, since I'm enlarging the condensed version of the transcript. I'll skip the first 39 pages where Werlin talks about his many different places of employment around the country, and a lot of background information. I'll try to pick out the most interesting pages. Then I'll put the sworn testimony of teachers who contradicted Werlin under oath.

Of course, the biggest contradictions are within Werlin's own words.

Like when he describes me as a maniac practically foaming at the mouth, then has trouble explaining why he asked me to return to work eight days later without a fitness for duty evaluation! Werlin's description of me is actually a pretty good fit for what Werlin looks like when he's going off--he must have looked like that the day he was screaming at principal Bill Hall, who fell to the floor of his office with a heart attack. Werlin told him to quit being dramatic. But then, Werlin got himself out of testifying in my court case by claiming heart problems.

Jenny Mo, if you sue Werlin, be sure to file a Motion to Compel his testimony. I didn't, but a judge in another case compelled Werlin to testify, saying his heart problems weren't that serious.


Saturday, May 12, 2007

Steve Castaneda is right about Cheryl Cox

Chula Vista Councilman Steve Castañeda agrees that Bonnie Dumanis has a suspicious habit of going after Chula Vista Mayor Cheryl Cox's political opponents. I would go further. Dumanis also lets Cheryl Cox get away with felonies. Castaneda's story is in today's San Diego Union Tribune. I have previously written about Dumanis' shocking prosecution of Jason Moore for taking two hours off work, and her shameful non-prosecution of Richard Werlin, Cheryl Cox's agent when she was a board member at CVESD.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Response from "disgruntled" teacher

Recently I discovered that Linda Lozito, a parent in West Contra Costa County School District in Richmond, California had written about me on the Internet. Her school district is also known as WCCCUSD, and was called Richmond Schools before it was reorganized in the 1990's after trying to declare bankrupcy. Here is my response.

I am the San Diego teacher whose sanity parent Linda Lozito of wccusdtalk questioned in order to defend Richard Werlin. Werlin was Assistant Superintendent of WCCCUSD in Richmond, California, until he had a teacher arrested in front of her second-graders because she complained about bullying. Werlin then proceeded to fall off the map, as he had done three years earlier in my school district, Chula Vista Elementary School District in the San Diego area.

Werlin held the same position when he was down here at CVESD. When he was subpoenaed in December 2003 to testify in my lawsuit against him, he suddenly claimed to have heart problems. He was seen looking hale and hearty soon afterward, but he stayed out of work and collected a lot of sick pay. Werlin's health problems seemed to have recurred the day after second-grade teacher Jenny Mo was arrested. A judge in San Diego decided that Werlin's heart problems were too mild to justify his request not to testify in court. Maybe the judge should have taken that into consideration that scientists have found that lying is stressful.

Ms. Lozito did not understand the PERB document she quoted in her comments. She seemed to think that a court decision had been reached in the PERB case. In fact, she was looking at a charge I filed against Richard Werlin. PERB did not do any fact-finding. It simply decided not to act on my charge. Since Richard Werlin was working with CTA, PERB's decision is not surprising. PERB's general counsel Robert Thompson has a decidedly odd relationship with CTA. He is very close to CTA's head counsel Beverly Tucker, and has never accepted a CTA member's complaint against CTA.

Linda Lozito looked among the shockingly false allegations of Richard Werlin that were quoted in the PERB refusal, and selected some quotes about me to put on the Internet. She suggested that wccusdtalk members look at my website ( and decide for themselves who was telling the truth. She reminded people that some teachers really are crazy.

Of course Linda is right that some teachers are crazy. The same is true of cab drivers, engineers,housewives, and school district administrators. But people in power have a bad habit of destroying anyone who questions their actions with the time-honored trick of calling their opponents crazy. (Remember how the Soviet Union put all those protesters in mental hospitals?)

I believe that Richard Werlin's behavior in the Jenny Mo case was over-the-top in its aggressiveness and vindictiveness. It was the result of poor leadership skills. I have personally seen Richard Werlin behave like someone with a severe anger management problem.

Jenny Mo's fellow employees wanted her to shut up about bullying at the school. They really shouldn't have been so afraid to openly discuss the subject. In fact, why not have a public discussion of the problem?

In my case, my fellow employees had secretly committed crimes against me, and I was asking questions that were likely to lead to the exposure of those crimes. Werlin and the teachers union wanted me to shut up, and worked together to cover up their wrongdoing. (Robin Donlan, the teacher who committed crimes against me, was a personal friend of the teachers union president.)

Linda Lozito apparently believed, without evidence, that Werlin and Robin Donlan and others were telling the truth, and tried to defend Werlin. This blind belief, obviously shared by teacher and wcccusd talk moderator Cathy Travalos, stands in opposition to the school district's decision to transfer Robin Donlan and her friends out of my school in 2004. But neither Lozito nor Travalos bothered to do the basic Googling that would have exposed serious problems in CVESD that were described by the San Diego Union Tribune, La Prensa, and San Diego Education Report. They didn't want to look at Werlin's legacy in Chula Vista. The transfer of five teachers was an unprecedented action to clean up a very serious problem. The school board had spent several $100,000's to cover up Robin Donlan's crimes, but Donlan was still causing trouble. The school board ended up spending even more money to defend itself from Robin. It should never have spent a dime on Castle Park Elementary. It should have transferred Robin Donlan and her co-conspirators in 2001.

Linda Lozito's apparent supposition that my opponents were honest and decent people received another blow this past weekend. Robin Donlan was sued for $7.7 million for stock options fraud. She is being investigated by the FBI, SEC, IRS and the Justice Department.

In my case, the California Teachers Association destroyed documents and committed perjury again and again. I plan to file a lawsuit soon regarding these crimes.

Parents of WCCCUSD, you will have better teachers for your kids if you demand that the law be followed when the union and the district work together to get rid of teachers. The targets are usually neither incompetent nor crazy. In my experience, the targets are usually the best teachers. The reason for the attack is almost always that the teacher has somehow gotten in the way of the union and/or district bosses' personal power.

CTA should be paying for a lawyer for Jennie Mo--and they shouldn't demand that they choose the lawyer! CTA refused to pay a cent for my representation--after I'd paid dues for twenty-five years!-- because I asked them to pay for a lawyer of my choice when I realized that the lawyer CTA chose for me was sabotaging me.)

You might also ask how much money your district has spent on defense lawyers in order to cover up wrongdoing.

Maura Larkins
San Diego

The above post is a response to
Linda Lozito's post about me.

If you go to the wccusdtalk site, and do a search for "werlin," you'll find other thoughts about the individual who has wreaked havoc in districts across the country.

Cathy Travalos, teacher at Kensington School and moderator of the group, was reluctant to publish my response on the wcccusd site, so I'm publishing it here.

Should I be surprised that a group that proclaims itself to be "open and honest" publishes misguided defenses of people it doesn't know, and refuses to allow rebuttals by individuals maligned in the process.

No. Anybody can proclaim themselves to be "open and honest" or "fair and balanced." If you want the truth told, you usually have to tell it yourself. So I've started a Yahoo group of my own. I've posted my correspondence with Cathy Travalos here.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Here's how the Cox Collaborative plays the game

The San Diego Union Tribune hides the wrondoing of public officials it likes. But the SDUT did give a perfect description of how those officials go about their business in the first paragraph of an article on April 22, 2007:

"San Diego County Officials aren't actively helping the Chargers find a new stadium site--they met only once with team representatives last year--yet since September they've paid $109,787 to two consultants who specialize in stadium deals."

The SDUT article goes on to note that a "one-hour phone call at a cost of $585" was part of the bill for something the county supervisors pretend NOT to be working on.

Gee whiz, you don't think Greg Cox and the all-Republican board of supervisors is trying to steer a stadium deal to Chula Vista, where his wife is mayor, do you? These consultants, who cost an average of $506 per hour, won't steer the Chargers away from cities with Democratic mayors, will they? Well, if they do, it's probably good for the Democrats. The Chargers have a tendency to drain money from any city that builds them a stadium.

San Diego County Supervisor Greg Cox pays public money to lawyers to get him what he wants, but pretends he himself is not involved. This is exactly how his wife, Cheryl Cox, operated in Chula Vista Elementary School District with her lawyers
Stutz, Artiano, Shinoff & Holtz.

The Cox Collaborative sets up lawyers with an assignment, then continues to channel public money to those lawyers while looking the other way. A public employee is appointed as go-between so that the Coxes don't have to communicate directly with the lawyers. They can claim ignorance of all the dirty deeds--unless someone actually provides the Coxes with the proof of the misdeeds.

The Coxes were provided with proof that Daniel Shinoff and Kelly Angell (AKA Minnehan) obstructed justice and suborned perjury on Cheryl Cox's behalf. Rather than investigate, Cheryl Cox said that the lawyers had told her not to talk about the matter.

Cute little scheme, isn't it? Greg and Cheryl aren't as dumb as they pretend to be. They are, however, every bit as secretive and dishonest as they appear to be.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Why a new system for evaluating employees is needed

During over twenty years of teaching at CVESD, I noticed that some teachers use every available opportunity to work themselves up into a lather as they attack the reputations of innocent children, administrators, parents, and fellow teachers. These hostile teachers would do a better job in the classroom if they focused on improving themselves instead of destroying others, and on the talents and possibilities of students and their fellow employees instead of false and damaging gossip.

Principals are influenced by teachers who use every available opportunity to sit in the principal’s office and promote themselves and make demands about how children and other teachers should be treated. The best teachers spend these times working on lesson plans, but this causes them to lose political power.

In Chula Vista Elementary Schools, good teachers are sometimes pushed out of schools to please teachers who practice personal politics. For example, Luci Fowers was pushed out of Castle Park Elementary when the principal’s decision to move Nikki Perez didn’t go over well with powerful teachers. And Heather Coman was pushed out by Robin Donlan because Robin and her friends didn't think Heather supported their "Kingdoms" program. A majority of teachers voted to get rid of the program before Heather was pushed out, and again after Heather left. So why was she targeted? Because she had low seniority. They did it because they could. Robin Donlan demanded that she be allowed to bump Heather out of her position. Then, when her victim was gone, Robin "decided" she didn't want the position after all.

Good principals are also pushed out of Chula Vista Elementary Schools, because they resist the pressure of destructive teachers. This is why Henry Manriquez was pushed out of Harborside. He didn't show proper deference to the Queen Bee of the school. When I heard that Dwight Sykes was a good principal at Kellogg, I knew his days were numbered. I never heard anything bad about him, but I wasn't surprised when Lowell Billings ousted him. Billings behaved differently toward Sykes' predecessor, who did have black marks against him that were frequently discussed in the district. Billings promoted Hall to the district office.

It would improve education if personnel decisions were made without political pressure.

A new, unbiased system needs to be devised to evaluate teachers and principals. Most elementary school principals have no idea how their teachers actually perform in the classroom, and most district administrators have no idea how principals actually perform at their schools. The district administrators often rely on the same destructive teachers that principals rely on to tell them who to fire.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Chula Vista Police Department 2005-06 hoax on behalf of Cheryl Cox to cover up CVESD crimes

Chula Vista is not the place to go if you are looking for equal protection of the law. It makes a big difference to the CVPD if you're a Republican or Democrat. Republicans like Cheryl Cox get help from the CVPD in covering up crimes and other wrongdoing.

On the other hand, a Democratic employee of the City of Chula Vista who took two hours off work to spy on a Cheryl Cox fundraiser has been charged by Bonnie Dumanis with perjury for not admitting he was doing political work on the job.

There's a lot of political work being done on the job in Chula Vista, but you don't hear much about the work done by Republicans in the police department.

The Chula Vista Police Department is a friend of Cheryl Cox, who was a Chula Vista Elementary school board member before she was elected mayor. The CVPD failed for over a year to investigate a financial crime at Castle Park Elementary School reported in 2005. Why? The CVPD has a knee-jerk policy of covering up wrongdoing by Cheryl Cox and Chula Vista Elementary School District.

In 2006 I pursued a public records request for months before the CVPD admitted that it had a record of a police visit to Castle Park Elementary on April 21, 2001. When they decided I wasn't likely to go away, I finally received a copy of the Castle Park Elementary School "call" report.*

But the Chula Vista Police Department was doing a lot more than illegally hiding public records in its efforts to support Cheryl Cox's campaign for mayor of Chula Vista in 2006.

Between 2000 and 2006 a long string of crimes had been committed at Castle Park Elementary. Cheryl Cox and CVESD committed bigger and bigger crimes to prevent the exposure of earlier, smaller crimes and violations of law committed at Castle Park Elementary in 2000 and 2001.

See "Castle Park Elementary," "Teacher Reports," and "Law Enforcement" at MAURALARKINS.COM (link available on this blog's link list).

In 2005-2006, the most newsworthy crime being covered up by the CVPD and the media to protect Cheryl Cox and the CVESD school board was the embezzlement of about $20,000 from the Castle Park Elementary PTA.

Apparently fearing that this crime would eventually become public knowlege, perhaps because it was being reported by this blog and the San Diego Education Report website, the Chula Vista Police Department seems to have developed a plan in November 2006 to create the appearance that it was no longer covering up the embezzlement. Of course, by November 7, 2006, the election was over. The cover-up was successful. Larry Cunningham crowed that voters had seen throught the lies of his opponents. The truth is that the voters saw almost nothing because Larry and Cheryl had spent hundreds of thousands of tax dollars to cover up crimes and other violations of law at CVESD.

The police asked former Castle Park PTA president Kim Simmons to come in the CVPD office, where she was interviewed and arrested. Was Simmons arrested after a careful investigation? No, the CVPD does not carefully investigate incidents that might embarrass Cheryl Cox and the school board. CVPD arrested Kim Simmons simply to create the impression that they weren't covering up Castle Park crimes, and passed on their humble efforts to District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis.

What did Bonnie Dumanis do? Prosecute the crime? Not likely. Just as she had refused to prosecute CVESD Assistant Superintedent Richard Werlin for obstruction of justice, she also refused to prosecute Kim Simmons.

Why? Maybe because Kim Simmons knew too much about crimes at Castle Park Elementary.

Did I mention that Kim Simmons was a close friend of transferred teacher Robin Donlan, a member of a powerful teacher clique at Castle Park Elementary that received a great deal of support form local papers when she and several other teachers were transferred out of the school?

Robin Donlan and her friends created a bizarre brouhaha, in which they and the media attacked the principal of Castle Park Elementary without ever mentioning the crimes of which Donlan had been accused. The truth was that the principal was attacked for daring to challenge the authority of the "family" that had created a crime wave at the school.

In October 2004, Kim Simmons entered a Castle Park Elementary classroom, and asked to use the school phone during class time so she could call up Robin Donlan and ask for instructions on how to proceed with her attacks on the principal of the school. The teacher gave permission, and took the opportunity to explain to her students that she was "mad at the principal." (There has been a dearth of professionalism at Castle Park Elementary since this "Castle Park Family" teacher group took over.)

Kim Simmons, along with Gina Boyd, the president of the teacher union, and school site council President Felicia Starr were working with transferred teacher Robin Donlan to get rid of the first principal who had had the nerve to stand up to the arbitrary power of the group of teachers who ruled the school.

What was Cheryl Cox's role in all this? She and all the other board members authorized the payment of hundreds of thousands of public dollars to Stutz, Artiano, Shinoff & Holtz law firm to represent Robin Donlan and cover up the crimes initiated by her and Assistant Superintendent Richard Werlin and several other CVESD officers and employees in 2000 and 2001. After fostering perjury and other crimes, and using huge sums of public money to keep bad teachers in power, Cheryl Cox ran for mayor on a platform of "charater" and "fiscal responsibility."

The San Diego Union Tribune has maintained to this day a complete black-out regarding crimes committed by Robin Donlan, Richard Werlin, Cheryl Cox and others at CVESD. On November 17, 2006 the SDUT published a small article about the arrest of former PTA Kim Simmons. The story immediately went into "partially hidden" status in the Union-Tribunes archives. (If someone does a signonsandiego search for "castle park PTA Simmons," he'll get a message back saying "No articles found.) The article can only be found by leaving "simmons" out of the search. If you already know about Kimberlee Simmons, the San Diego Union Tribune doesn't want you to know more.

Of course, there has been no follow-up to the SDUT story. But there should be--because the story created the false impression that the police were actually intending to do something about crime at Castle Park Elementary. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

The police waited until Cox was elected, and then they did their hoax arrest, but Kim Simmons was never charged with anything.

When wil the SD Union Tribune publish the full story, revealing Kim Simmons' close association to Robin Donlan and the "Castle Park Five"? When will the San Diego Union Tribune apologize for so maliciously attacking the honorable and decent principal of Castle Park Elementary on behalf of Robin Donlan, Kim Simmons, and the rest of their clique, after the group was found to be responsible for yet another crime after the SDUT had written so much on its behalf? How about it, Don Sevrens?

The SDUT November 2006 story about Simmons arrest was published to create the impression that Bonnie Dumanis and the Chula Vista Police Department are not covering up crimes involving Cheryl Cox and Castle Park Elementary School. It appears that Simmons wasn't really the fall guy; she was actually the pretend fall guy.

Bonnie Dumanis, why don't you investigate the use of public resources for political purposes at CVPD? Why don't you investigate crimes at Chula Vista Elementary School District, including perjury by Cheryl Cox and Robin Donlan? Or do you only use the public resources under your control to investigate Democrats?

*The police "call' report that was hidden for months by the CVPD revealed Assistant Superintendent Richard Werlin's attempt to silence a teacher who had suggested that the media might investigate what was happening at the school in 2001. The teacher clearly knew nothing about the media in San Diego. The San Diego Union Tribune, the Chula Vista Star-News and La Prensa still have not reported those crimes, although all three newspapers have long known about them. These three publications exposed their lack of journalistic ethics when they published a deluge of letters, articles and editorials defending the teacher, Robin Colls/Donlan who initiated the crime wave! All three papers were incensed when Robin Colls was transferred from Castle Park Elementary. Richard Werlin, who called the police when the teacher mentioned the media, didn't correctly estimate the power of his Chula Vista Elementary School Board bosses, including Cheryl Cox, to silence the media. Werlin did go on to achieve a certain amount of notoriety for his use of the police to silence teachers. He had second-grade teacher Jenny Mo arrested in front of her students at his new school district in Richmond, California this year when the teacher went to the media with a story about bullying at her school. Of course, Werlin didn't step up and take the credit/blame for the arrest. He let the principal sit in the hot seat. He took indefinite sick leave from his position.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Cheryl Cox gets away with suborning perjury, but gets young man indicted for taking time off work

It must feel pretty heady for Chula Vista mayor Cheryl Cox to get away with suborning perjury (click here to see one such case involving Cheryl Cox) and at the same time be able to get District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis to prosecute someone who tried to take a picture of her for this rarely-prosecuted crime. Cheryl has played rough for a long time, but she turns out to be more vindictive than I had imagined.

Cheryl approved the actions of her favorite law firm, Stutz, Artiano, Shinoff & Holtz on behalf of CVESD. (This is Leslie Devaney's firm, to which the City of Chula Vista, of which Cox is mayor recently awarded a cozy settlement in the Madigan case.) Cheryl's decisions as school board member put extreme pressure on two law officers to commit perjury. When she received an official complaint about the crimes of Rick Werlin, San Diego District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis decided it was okay for Richard Werlin to commit obstruction of justice on behalf of Chula Vista Elementary School District.

But it's a different story when the shoe is on the other foot. Bonnie kowtowed to Cox and brought felony charges against a young man who tried to photograph Cox with Cox's disgraced family friend David Malcolm. This young man's actions pale in comparison to those of Cheryl Cox and CVESD. Bonnie claims the young man committed perjury when he said he had taken leave from his job to go to the Cox political fundraiser, where Cox and Malcolm were socializing. Bonnie says the young man was actually being paid by the City of Chula Vista at the time he was at the Cox luncheon.

For Cheryl Cox, having political power means she is above the law.

It is clear that Bonnie's prosecution of Jason Moore is politically motivated. Perjury is, sadly, an extremely common crime in our legal system. Cox's former lawyers, Stutz, Artiano, Shinoff & Holtz, use it as a knee-jerk perjury response to true allegations. Naturally, Bonnie Dumanis refused to investigate the felonies of Cheryl Cox and Rick Werlin.

Am I the only one who believes that Cox uses public money to achieve her own personal and political goals? Apparently not.

On November 2, 2006, the San Diego Union Tribune published these comments by Sharon Floyd:

"Candidate Cheryl Cox refuses to acknowledge the ties she has to David Malcolm, former Chula Vista council member and port commissioner who was jailed for corruption. Records show that she has taken tens of thousands of dollars from Malcolm.

"Cox has been a paid lobbyist, not only for developers who have business with the city, but also casinos, trucking companies and liquor stores.

"Cox likes high-rises. Her family had a deposit on a condominium in the now infamous Españada project."

Cox also approves of stretching the truth when she's not under oath. After wasting hundreds of thousands of tax dollars in Chula Vista to achieve her personal and political goals, including doing business with builders who channelled money to her campaign, she had the nerve to run for mayor of Chula Vista on a platform of fiscal responsibility and character issues. Clearly, Cox cares more about her own power than she does about the education of children, fiscal responsibility, or the law.

Cheryl Cox also put the Sheriff of Santa Barbara in a difficult position when she covered up crimes at CVESD. Cheryl weaved a tangled web of deceit after deciding to cover up Robin Doig/Colls/Donlan's crimes at Castle Park Elementary. Robin's brother and his boss, Commander Sam Gross, were pressured to commit perjury by Cox's decision.

Deputy District Attorney Patrick O'Toole, San Diego Union Tribune reporter Tanya Mannes and the grand jury involved in the Cox case will, if they have any interest in equal application of the law or journalistic ethics, take note of proof of perjury by the Sheriff of Santa Barbara to help Cheryl Cox cover up crimes.
They will also look at supporting pleadings in this perjury case, which was thrown out because plaintiff did not correctly plead the alteration or destruction of documents.

Did you know that there is one--and only one--crime that anyone can commit and not be liable for civil damages. It is perjury. You have to have power to get someone prosecuted for perjury. The reason for this is, of course, that perjury is committed all the time at the behest of many lawyers and by witnesses who want to cover up wrongdoing. The only time such perjury is litigatible is when documents are destroyed or altered. Such destruction of documents occurred at Chula Vista Elementary School District when Cheryl Cox voted to violate the law and cover up crimes.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Castle Park Elementary must restore credibility

Castle Park Elementary teachers aren't the only people holding a public trust who cover up crimes. Today's paper says that one in four cadets at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy would not report a colleague who committed sexual assault.

The difference is that the Coast Guard is trying to change this. It has created a task force to try to restore respect for the law. In the Coast Guard, 65% say that personal loyalty would affect their decision about whether to report a crime. The coast guard thinks this is a big problem.

At Castle Park, that figure was 100% in 2003. The CVESD board does not think this is a problem. In fact, intense pressure to keep quiet was placed on teachers by the school district and its laweyrs. Shame on board members Cheryl Cox (now mayor of Chula Vista), Pam Smith, Bertha Lopez, Patrick Judd and Larry Cunningham, and their law firm, Stutz, Artiano, Shinoff & Holtz.

Castle Park Elementary teachers and other staff are still covering up crimes, including crimes by teacher against teacher. They are also keeping quiet the embezzlement of $20,000 from the PTA in 2004-2005. And the school district is doing nothing to raise the sense of moral or legal responsibility of teachers.

The real problem, of course, is how teachers treat kids.

The English-only staff at one grade level at Castle Park Elementary consists entirely of veterans of the costly teacher takeover of Castle Park Elementary which resulted in the loss of many good teachers before several problem teachers were ousted in 2004. Has the teacher takeover failed? No. Chula Vista Educators has more power than ever to protect bad teachers and get rid of good employees. And the silence at Castle Park and the district office means that nothing is being done to improve teachers' attitude that they belong to a members-only club that believes its members are above the law.

So who suffers most from teachers who are given the authority to create arbitrary rules in place of the rule of law? The kids.