CONCORD -- The campaign to convert Clayton Valley High into a charter school has turned into a "war," Trustee Cheryl Hansen says.
The latest round of attacks was unleashed Friday, after Superintendent Steven Lawrence informed charter supporters that the board would not consider the charter at Tuesday's meeting, despite Hansen's request that it be on the agenda. Later Friday, the district released its agenda with the charter listed as an information item and no vote slated.
Lawrence said Chief Financial Officer Bryan Richards needed more time to review the charter's most recent financial information, which was submitted Thursday.
"Mr. Richards' review of the fiscal data will require a complex analysis and will take time," Lawrence wrote in a Friday morning email. "It is unreasonable to expect him to conduct a thorough analysis in the three intervening business days between receipt and the board meeting."
Within hours, Clayton Mayor David Shuey, Clayton Councilman Joe Medrano and Clayton Valley High teacher Neil McChesney had shot back angry emails asking Lawrence to reconsider, since the agenda was not yet final.
Shuey said Richards had most of the information before Thursday and that the latest revisions were the result of incomplete financial information the district gave to the charter committee.
"I only wish this came as a surprise," he wrote. "But, we have anticipated exactly this type of tactic and have done our best to work in good faith and prevent it."
Hansen said she was outraged to learn Thursday that board President Gary Eberhart decided not to put the item on the agenda.
The board unanimously agreed in September to approve the charter, if 56 conditions were met by February. Charter supporters have submitted responses to the conditions and have asked for a final approval or denial by Tuesday.
"I feel we've had enough feedback that enough conditions have been met that we can adequately reassure the public," Hansen said Friday before the agenda was released.
"My intent was to either have the courage to deny it or have the courage to approve it, because now this is causing a lot of public disruption and distrust, and it's a war. It's not a healthy thing. I don't know what we're stalling for."
The Mt. Diablo school board will meet at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in the district office at 1936 Carlotta Drive in Concord. More information is available by calling 925-682-8000, ext. 4000, or by visiting http://esbpublic.mdusd.k12.ca.us. Click on Oct. 25.
Additional details are in the On Assignment blog at www.ibabuzz.com/onassignment.