CUSD School Board Candidate Scot Youngblood

Coronado School Board Candidate Question #7:

“The last two years before the Coronado Unified School Board have been uniquely tumultuous. Many, if not most, of those issues were ones where the School Board had minimal latitude for action. One issue that stands out as being completely within the Board’s purview, was the response to the tortilla-throwing incident of June 19, 2021. Defend the Board actions, or detail what your course of action would have been in their shoes.”

My proposed statement IF I were Board President based on the early facts known on the morning of June 20, 2021:

“On June 19, 2021, after a CIF basketball game, there was an altercation which included a handful of the student body throwing tortillas. This act has been seen as racially insensitive, and I fully condemn any racism, or actions based on the color of one’s skin, creed, or national origin. We will be working with the Coronado Police Department and CUSD Administration to perform a full and thorough investigation. The Board will convene an emergency special meeting as soon as legally practicable, to review the findings of the ongoing investigation and communicate these in the spirit of full transparency. As Board President, I offer my sincere apologies to the members of the Orange Glen High School community. I thank everyone for their patience as we attempt to fully understand these unfortunate events.”

The allegation that a single adult individual brought all of the tortillas into the building, distributed them, and encouraged the tortilla throwing by students at the end of the game was known by the District administration and Board members very soon after the event. Issuing conclusions about motives within 24 hours was obviously imprudent, and resulted in the incorrect smearing of our students and the community. When such an event occurs, the appropriate course of action is to first gather as much information as possible. The Board’s rushed statement, which was issued without a proper meeting or public notice, further exacerbated the situation by violating the Brown Act. Board members are elected to four-year terms precisely because the community wants them to take a measured response to events and issues, knowing that the long-term results matter far more than a knee-jerk but crowd-pleasing reaction. The Board should resist any rush to judgement. As adults, we need to protect our community’s children from politics, to include media driven smears and false but incessantly repeated allegations. We also should place the lion’s share of the blame on the single adult political activist in this controversy who instigated this event. Board members certainly shouldn’t communicate with this adult, collaborate on his defense statement, and then have that statement posted to the CUSD Board official website. The Board offered our children no such assistance.

I certainly do not envy any public official that has to respond to such a political and social media maelstrom. However, Board members need to have the courage to do what is right and seek the truth, prior to issuing conclusions. The Board would need to take the slings and arrows, not the kids, while the investigation ensues. Once completed, the results of that investigation need to be fully disclosed as much as possible to the public. As in this case, if the Board made mistakes, then an apology should be issued to those who were wrongly accused. The Board should also strongly advocate for restoration of the CIF championship, hard-fought and rightly-won by the varsity players who had nothing to do with the event itself.

VOL. 112, NO. 43 - Oct. 26, 2022

(1) comment

KevinAshley

"The Board should resist any rush to judgement. As adults, we need to protect our community’s children from politics, to include media driven smears and false but incessantly repeated allegations. We also should place the lion’s share of the blame on the single adult political activist in this controversy who instigated this event."

Please read those two sentences back to yourself and recognize that you are doing exactly what you say we should protect kids from: you inject politics into this event by claiming all blame should be on a "political activist." You clearly got your narrative from WTPC. No mention of the CHS Coaches relationship to the "political activist", no mention the Coach gave him the ok to bring the tortillas, and then you make the claim that the kids who threw the tortillas were not on the Varsity team. You are pushing a WTPC political narrative of the event instead of looking for the uncomfortable truth, that our Coach knew about the tortillas, he started a fight, and as a result of the commotion, our boys threw tortillas. Do not play politics with this event. The Board withdrew their rushed statement, the Superintendent did his job honorably in a difficult situation. The players and most of the parents have moved on. Should you get on the Board, it is my hope that you spend more time to understand what really happened that night and avoid hearing just the WTPC narrative.

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