Editorial: Caswell, Klausner, Hausser for Palo Alto school board
Original post made
on Oct 17, 2007
There's a feeling among many within the Palo Alto school district that we have emerged from a long stretch of Class 5 whitewater rapids and are now regrouping in a quiet eddy before the next stretch.
Read the full endorsement editorial here Web Link
posted Wednesday, October 17, 2007, 12:00 AM
Like this comment
Posted by RWE
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 22, 2007 at 2:43 pm
Just to update on a little history.
MFC was hired *specifically* to put enormous pressure on staff, relative to benefit control, and other issues. She was essentially a "hit woman" who was brought in to do the "dirty work" that the BOE (at the time) didn't have gumption for.
BOE member Kroynman was especially happy to follow Callan's lead. When Kroynman left, many thought that Callan would cool down a bit, but Townsend followed right in Callan's footsteps.
Callan was mostly a one-step-removed adminnistrator, with a very brusque demeanor, She brought people in that would do her bidding, which is iwhy it's still disturbing to see Cook and Bowers in place. They are servants of the "mamagement mode du jour", with little vision of their own (except survival) guiding their respective management styles.
Callan shouting? No kidding... How about Callan's first meeting with the teacher's union rep, accompanied by her attorney, and having that attorney say that the union was essentially small potatoes and Bush League, and that it would be dealt with as such. It was an unbelievable first meeting, followed by more of the same, until the union reps refused to meet with Callan alone, so that they had corroboration ofo the kind of treatment she was portioning out.
All that aside, Townsend really is an astute politician. She is savvy, and has been well schooled by her advisers not to go on the defensive, which is the kiss of death for any candidate.
Her endorsements - like most endorsements - are payback for the same (endorsements that she has issued), or endorsements that are put "in the bank", just in case someone who has endorsed Townsend needs a boost from a known candidate down the road.
Like "Pollster", above, I think this is shaping to be a race that could go anywhere. Townsend's endorsement by the Daily will certainly help her cause, as will the seeming effectiveness of her sign placement, and her incumbent status.
That said, Ezran pulling a lot of people in, and the negative vote against Townsend is gathering even more steam since the Daily endorsement. Those who want Townsend gone (including me) are stepping up their activities to make that a reality. So, her Daily endorsement has worked against her in that sense.
In any case, Townsend has been summarily chastised - here, by the Weekly, and among most teaching and administrative staff (whose trust she has lost).
It's a toss up whether she gets the nod in November, but again, if she does, her influence on the BOE will be greatly reduced.
My preference is for three new board members, because it would bring much needed new energy to the BOE, without baggage.
If Townsend is re-elected, all the negativity in the community that exists toward her will continue. This will be an energy drain on the BOE, because many people will react with anger at *any* influence she exhibits in close decisions, and many people will turn off from wanting to support PAUSD's next, much-needed bond.
Especially for the latter reason, I would rather see Camille Townsend fade back into her law practice, and rest on the positive laurels that she deserves, while hiding the serious failures of judgment that plagued her term on the BOE.
[Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]