Home » Island News, Schools


Submitted by on 1, August 9, 2009 – 7:37 am9 Comments

020509_18291We’re getting word that a group of folks who are angry over the school board’s approval of classroom lessons intended to halt anti-gay bullying have served the three school board members who said yes to the lessons with notice that they intend to mount a recall effort.

Word of the recall effort has been circulating on local school watchers’ Facebook pages Saturday. School board President Mike McMahon said he got an e-mail from a group called SERVE on Saturday night indicating that a process server had served recall papers to the three board members who had said yes to the lessons.

Tracy Jensen, Ron Mooney and Niel Tam voted in favor of the lessons in May after a series of contentious public hearings that saw hundreds turn out to voice opinions for and against them.

The lessons will be taught this fall in Alameda’s public elementary schools as part of a more general anti-bullying curriculum already in place.

More to come.


  • Jeff R. Thomason says:

    I told you this was coming. Did you really think that the parents of Alameda would sit back and let a vocal minority attempt to indoctrinate our kids with the homosexual lifestyle? And, attempt to do it without notice? And, attempt to do it without giving us an option to opt out? The legal proceedings are just just getting started. And, yes … we are well organized and well financed. We don't care what you do in your own homes … just don't try to teach that crap to our kids :-)

  • Terri says:

    Wow, I never knew teaching children empathy, tolerance and compassion toward individuals who may be different than them is crap. How very sad this is happening in Alameda.

  • What? says:

    For real? What year is it? Where do we live? I hope this misguided effort dies quietly as it should..

  • Kate Quick says:

    I really really hope that those who are doing this realize that the schools are in desperate shape with respect to money and forcing an election will, of necessity take from the children's education. I respect their right to an opinion on the matter at hand, but I think a better approach to making better schools would be for them to volunteer in the classrooms, or to do projects for the schools, such as maintenance, fund raising, or tutoring. The last thing the district needs right now is to spend money on something that will not assist the children in the classroom one wit. Better to wait until the next election and put forward candidates more to their way of thinking and save the money.

  • Arby says:

    Someone has money to burn.

  • Adam says:

    These board members would not be threatened by a recall if they had voted to approve a curriculum that taught empathy, tolerance and compassion to all individuals who are different in any way – tall, short, fat, glasses, race, disability, religion, appearance, family situation, etc. These board members would not be facing a recall if they had voted to support parental rights as already defined by the law.

    If cost is the concern, then why doesn't the board just undo their vote on the curriculum? That would be free. Why did they vote to approve a curriculum that was so strongly opposed by a majority of parents at the board meetings? Why did they vote for a curriculum that violates parental rights laws and was sure to lead to not only an expensive recall campaign but also expensive lawsuits? Why did they put themselves at odds with state and federal law and at odds with Alameda parents? The board members who ignored the will of a majority of parents and voted for this inappropriate curriculum are the ones who put the district in this bad situation.

    It is the board's responsibility to approve actions that follow the will of the people, protect children and parents equally, and protect the district. Three members of the board shirked that responsibility. Now they face the natural consequences that they are expected to face as part of the democratic process.

  • Julia says:

    @Adam: No, the school board's responsibility is to ensure a safe environment in which the children of Alameda can and do learn. This is an anti-bullying program, nothing more. Whether or not homosexuality is the issue, such measures are important in creating an open and safe learning environment in which students feel comfortable learning and expressing themselves. Additionally, think of all the taunts thrown around in school — how many of them were actually true ("Hi, germy Jeremy!")?

    When it comes down to teaching tolerance or teaching bigotry, I think you know where you can find the majority of Alameda parents. The school board probably knew it risked drawing the ire of certain groups when they voted on a measure tied to a hot button issue, but I for one applaud their stance for acceptance over intolerance.

  • Joel says:

    I am glad that in Alameda the vocal minority belongs to the few misguided souls who believe that there is some sort of 'Gay Agenda' and that by spending 30 minutes a year reading about a family situation that looks different than them their children will run off to San Francisco and take up interior design. Indoctrination? Please. People choose to be gay like they choose to be black, white, Asian or Latino- that is to say that there is no choice, they simply are. Anti- bullying should cover more folks, and I dare say it will in the future, but a recall effort? I hope they fail miserably for wasting time and money the city does not have to propagate their own bigoted views. School should be safe for all of our kids, regardless of race, creed, or sexual orientation (of themselves or their parents).

  • Kellie Wood says:

    As one who survived terrible bullying in grade school and in high school for just for being short, teasing and taunting don’t come close…..and being chased home from school in race-related riots…..let’s just not go there. So as long as we’re talking about real bullying here, taunting, teasing and the like, happen, in schools and well into adulthood, but if one teaches and reinforces the “golden rule”, there won’t be any need for indulgent behavioral mandates from a single group. Instead of dealing with bullying, “Lesson 9" respects, and even goes as far as coddling one group at the exclusion of all other groups under the guise of a warm and fuzzy, safe, welcoming, bully-free school environment! Who are you kidding? This just reinforces a “victim” mentality and does not empower kids to stand up for themselves nor does it teach dignity and respect for everyone. How about being an ally of respect for all human beings….period? Hmmmm…..There's a concept!

    Most of the speakers at the board meetings and those responding in email discerned the misguidance of this lesson, and responded appropriately in overwhelming opposition to the curriculum. Misguided? I think not. It's not really about bullying. Just admit it.

    The three board members certainly ignored the guidance and sentiment of parents and need to be recalled because they made a decision without respect for the law or tax payers in order to indulge a particular group, and as a result, dignity and respect for all groups as human beings in our public schools, will still be severely lacking. The rich diversity of the Bay Area should serve to encourage all of us to be culturally sensitive to the needs of others, but is it enough? Respect for everyone is just plain common sense, but at times it seems, common sense is like integrity, it’s not so common after all….

Leave a comment!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.