BUSD Cover-up?

When I said I was "about done" in my last post, I was referring to taking part in "The Show". I have no plans to lose focus on our kids. I will not be deterred in my efforts to get to the bottom of the financial transactions of Dr. Kayrell's administration. I plan to continue to hold our school board responsible for their complacency and failure to question the actions of the administration.

I have long believed that the school board meetings are a well orchestrated show and a waste of time for parents to attend. For the last five school years I have been enduring “The Show” hoping to make a difference and getting more parents involved. Watching how this board and administration work to discredit parents standing up to ask the difficult questions, I completely understand why parents don’t even bother. I’m done going to their show. I’m done trying to jump through their hoops just to be able to address our elected officials and then watch them try to discredit me. In this latest episode they have crossed the line and should be ashamed of themselves. The problem is none of our elected representatives will stand up and call them out.

I have been very public in my efforts to gain access to the public records of the school district. Even if the board members and Dr. Kayrell, claim they never read my blog or the Patch, which I know they do, they can’t deny they have received my emails. They all knew at the March 13th board meeting that I was requesting public records but no one told me there was a process I needed to follow. This was three weeks before this week's “Show” where they suddenly produced “the form”. This is a form that I am required by them, not by the California Public Records Act, to complete in order to make a formal request.

Not one of the four board members elected to represent the families of Beaumont, or Board Member Wayne Hackney, who when he was appointed to the board took an oath to represent our families and our kids, made any effort to let me know about the procedures which Mr. Orozco chastised me for not following. They knew for three weeks that I was claiming I had received no response from Board President Lara or anyone in Dr. Kayrell’s administration. Then in the latest episode of “The Show” Mrs. Lara claims that an email sent to me by Mrs. Poulter, in which she asked me for clarification, was the Board’s official response. Nowhere in Mrs. Poulter’s email was there any mention of “the form”.

No one told me about “the form” because I believe none of them knew about it, I believe it didn’t exist.  I went to the district’s website this morning and surprise, surprise, there it was. Under the “Community” tab, there is a new link titled BUSD Request for Information and there’s “the form”.  Dr. Kayrell and Mrs. Lara, if asked…which is unlikely, will probably try and claim it has been there since before I made my request.

Before I emailed my request, I referred to the administration regulations and board policies for guidance on how to proceed. If this form has always existed, than why isn’t referred to anywhere in the Administration Regulation 1340 AR Access to District Records. Pay close attention to the “Inspection of Records and Requests for Copies” section. There is no information to the process and there is no indication “the form” exists. You can also check Board Policy 1340 BP Access to District Records and there too, you will not find any process or link to a form. I can tell you why there is no mention; “the form” was just recently posted to the site, probably sometime this week.

 I design and develop websites and web applications for a living. I know my way around html and javascript code. There is almost always a trail that can be followed. If you right click on any webpage, unless it is encrypted, and then you select “View Source” you will see the code behind the website. If you do this for the district’s site, you will see every published document has an ID number, in this case it begins with ”vpid” it stands for Virtual Path Identifier. I believe this number is automatically sequentially generated by the district’s cms  (content management system). The vpid number for “the form” is 1333105577999. This is the highest vpid on the site; this includes all of the website’s individual school site pages. Coincidence? I think not. I believe this is indicating it is the last document published on any of the district’s web pages.

Mr. Orozco told me I needed to follow the procedure. How can I follow a procedure that doesn’t exist? I believe Mrs. Lara and Dr. Kayrell recently created “the form” in response to my efforts. If this is the case, than I believe Mrs. Lara is once again in violation of the Board’s Code of Ethics policy and may be worthy of a censure. Will any of the other board members be interested in finding out if there has been a cover-up and an effort to discredit me? I know of two who won’t.

Once again, I am going to give Mr. Orozco an opportunity to show us what he is made of. He used his position to try and discredit me by chastising me for not following a procedure that didn’t exist. I am giving him the benefit of the doubt. I think he believed Dr. Kayrell and Mrs. Lara when they told him there was an existing form I needed to complete and procedure I needed to follow. After knowing what I have discovered, what will he do about it? What will any of our board members do about it? If our board is really concerned about their Code of Ethics, they will ask the district’s webmaster when the document was posted and find out who knew what and when. It is possible that I have incorrectly assessed how the vpid is generated but unless anyone is willing to ask, we won’t know.

The majority of our board has decided they are more beholding to the administration than the parents and families who elected them to protect our kids’. The new Code of Ethics policy, drawn up by Dr. Kayrell and Mrs. Lara and adopted by the board this week, only allows the board members to police themselves. There is no provision for a member of the community to ask for an investigation. The request has to come from at least 2 board members. Since we know three of them are in Dr. Kayrell’s pocket, it is unlikely anything will happen. It is time for Dr. Kayrell’s administration and Mrs. Lara’s board to stop treating parents with disrespect.