By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
As near as The Spike can figure, this whole dustup stems from bad blood between the superintendent and the teachers' union.
Romero, who was in his 12th year as superintendent when he was put on paid leave in March by Sudea and Lopez, apparently had the bad form to demand that teachers be evaluated several times a year, among other things. Long story short, the union supported the candidacies of both Sudea and Lopez. The Open Meeting problems began almost as soon as Lopez took office in January 1999, Robles and others say.
This is a district where a successful candidate gets just over 100 votes. Sudea won her last election in 1994 by a mere handful.
In 1999, "the control started to go to people who have a very specific and self-serving interest that is not the interest of the children," says Robles, who has been on the board since 1988.
Before Sudea and Lopez were elected, the board was enamored of Romero and the innovations he was bringing to the district, including installing computers and creating a high school.
"I've always done what was right for the kids and right for the community," says Romero, who is hoping the court will rule in favor of the AG and invalidate the board's unlawful actions, including placing him on leave. "We've got to get Wilson back to educating kids, and get people out of these personal fights."
The Spike couldn't agree more.
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