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April 21, 2010 > Letter to the editor: Our community deserves honesty, integrity, and transparency

Letter to the editor: Our community deserves honesty, integrity, and transparency

Excellent schools are only possible if we have a school board that models ethical governance and transparency.

On February 22, 2010, a vacancy was created on the Hayward School Board when Dr. Sarah Gonzales resigned. Instead of scheduling a special election, the board opted for an application process to fill the seat. Unfortunately the process failed as is evident from the many objections from one board member, interview candidates and the community.

Therefore, we, the people, are exercising our right to a special election. The law provides that if we are dissatisfied with the Board's action we may gather a fixed percentage of voters' signatures on a petition to call for a special election. We believe that a free and fair election is the only way to redress a heinous miscarriage of democracy.

We are circulating a petition because the March 24 provisional appointment to the Hayward Unified School District (HUSD) Board of Trustees was improper.

The public and candidates received inconsistent, incomplete and conflicting instructions for the application process from the Board and Interim Superintendent's office.

Contrary to Board rules, the President moved the appointment without deliberation.

No one was informed until after the fact that the individual appointed to the seat vacated by Sarah Gonzalez on February 22 is the spouse of the Director of Human Resources for the HUSD. Under federal law, such an appointment represents a conflict of interest.

The candidates' application packets have been shredded at the district and are no longer available as part of the official record to the public.

The pertinent part in the official audio record of what happened in the special meeting of March 17 has been erased at the district. The media record now does not exist to demonstrate the fraud and corruption of the appointment.

Due to the flaws in this appointment process, petitioners are rightfully requesting an election instead of this appointment.

Please visit to download and print the petition and explanation of "Why are we circulating this petition?" If you are a registered voter in the HUSD you may circulate the petition yourself, otherwise please give it to a friend or relative who is a registered voter in HUSD.

Everyone who signs the petition must be a registered voter in the HUSD. Each petition has room for only five signatures so please print and circulate as many as you can. We need 1,300 signatures turned to Lawrence Fitzpatrick by Thursday, April 15.

Please note that it will not be appropriate to collect on HUSD property. On the sidewalk outside schools is fine.

Continue to monitor for instructions on where to turn in your signatures. If you have any questions, please email

Lawrence Fitzpatrick

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