Fresno Unified trustees, who have been holding their public meetings electronically since the start of the coronavirus pandemic a year ago, will meet on April 7 at Roosevelt High School.

The meeting will be the first opportunity for community members to directly address board members in over a year. Public comment has been limited to email or voicemail submissions, of which only a handful are read during the meeting itself and the rest referred to as similar comments.

District spokeswoman Amy Idsvoog said the high school setting will provide more space for trustees to be distanced but also put them in closer contact with constituents after more than a year of online-only meetings.

Members of the Facebook group Parents for Re-Opening Fresno Unified are already planning a warm welcome for trustees at Roosevelt.

“We need to pack that gymnasium or cafeteria, or wherever the meeting is held!” the group’s administrator, Marcelino Valdez Jr., posted on the group’s page. “We talk about how upset we are about the schools being closed or the crumbs they offer us with this hybrid model, but will we get enough people there to show our strength in numbers? Let’s show the trustees we are not going to standby as they continue to allow the FTA to dictate to us the parents and the board when schools should fully reopen. We can’t let the tail wag the dog. Let’s remind them who they all work for and it isn’t the FTA.”

Valdez said Friday that if there isn’t enough room inside the venue, he is encouraging parents to greet the trustees on their way in and pass along the group’s message that schools need to be open full-time — five days a week.

When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revised its advice about distancing students, recommending 3 feet instead of 6, it opened the door for more students to return to classrooms, Valdez said. But Fresno Unified has not adjusted its reopening plan to account for the new recommendation, he said.

“We want schools to be open five days a week, and we want it immediately,” he said.

COVID-19 Restrictions Will Be in Place

Board President Valerie Davis said the agenda and location for the April 7 meeting was finalized Friday morning.

She said she’s looking forward to in-person board meetings again, although she acknowledged that some people might have concerns about COVID-19 risks. “I’ve had my two shots, and I’m happy,” she said.

The meeting will be held in the Roosevelt High cafeteria, which will be set up to keep trustees, staff, and the public properly distanced to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Davis said.

Idsvoog said there will be limited public seating at Roosevelt that will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. The meetings will be recorded and made available on the district website the following day, she said.

“Unfortunately, they will not be broadcast live,” Idsvoog said. “While our boardroom is equipped for livestreaming to television, our school site facilities are not.”

A Facebook Live broadcast is not an option, she said: “With us hosting an in-person meeting, we won’t be livestreaming through Facebook.”

According to Trustee Terry Slatic, the first two in-person board meetings will be held at Roosevelt and McLane, with following meetings at the district’s other five high schools. The board typically meets twice monthly.

One Response

  1. William Thacker

    Fresno Unified School District FUSD needs to drain the swamp creatures. There is no emphasis placed on academics their test results are an embarrassment. While on lock down board member Keisha Thomas had no problem pushing through a new publicly funded charter school for her daughter and son in law and working as a ” consultant” for her buddy Miguel Arias on ” Transforming Fresno Community ” another money laundering scam of public funds under City of Fresno.
    The FUSD board found millions to feed FUSD families even offering drive through to the same families who receive food stamps, stimulus money and frequent Fresno area food banks. They also found time to quash the 131 year old warrior image of Fresno High School without proper procedures and policies being followed. Nor following Brown Act guidelines.
    They even found time to roll out a template for after school club called Social Justice. This club teaches all ” white history” = white lies and about how America is on occupied land.
    However, the hypocrisy of FUSD radical board members They deem all Native American mascots as ” rascist” and vow to change them all without a cost analysis of removal. GV wire estimated with Fresno High alone the removal would be minimal of $400,000. Yet FUSD is out of compliance in many state and federal educational requirements one is rolling out a comprehensive Native American studies and Genocide Education studies program .
    With impending lawsuits non education expenses of lawyer fees and settlements will cost taxpayers millions in fees. Then there is the tango they perform with their union partners at FTA and still more emphasis on appeasing their union than fulfilling the educational needs and job preparedness for FUSD students who will not have the tools to compete with other area students in surrounding school districts.
    Shouldn’t time, effort and public money be spent on rolling out a comprehensive FULL TIME in person instruction for the students of FUSD rather than using their elected positions to play Social Justice advocates and political hacks with educational funds?
    There well be elections to replace 4 seats on the FUSD board Fresno families should think long and hard at the waste and liability this current board has caused and their lack of regard for “Students First” millions in waste.


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