Friday, March 07, 2008

Chaos Follows Corruption Allegations in OC School District: Citizens Battle to Reform the Capistrano Unified School District


Orange County, CA. The Full Disclosure Network® is re-releasing a ground-breaking six part series covering the historic battle to restore honesty, integrity and accountability to the the Capistrano Unified School District (CUSD). The citizen revolt began in 2005 with a petition drive to recall all seven members of the Board of Trustees and has now culminated in a full scale criminal investigation of the school board members and the indictment of former superintendent James Fleming for multiple felonies.

PROVOCATIVE SERIES
This provocative series will be featured on Cox South Orange County Cable Channel 31 starting Wednesday March 12th at 6 p.m., and will continue each and every Wednesday for the next six weeks.
Listed below are air dates for the six episodes, with links on titles to a short video previews:

1. "Parents Declare War on School District" Part 1-2
Part 1 : Wednesday March 12th 6 p.m.
Part 2: Wednesday March 19th 6 p.m.
Reform leaders first make public allegations that CUSD officials had squandered $52 million on luxurious administration building for themselves, while students and teachers are relegated to dilapidated portable classrooms. Ignoring massive community opposition, CUSD then also proceeds with construction of a $150 million high school next to South Orange County’s largest active landfill.

2.
"Citizens Provoke DA Raids on CUSD" Part 3-4
Part 3: Wednesday March 26th 6 p.m.
Part 4: Wednesday April 2nd 6 p.m
Superintendent James Fleming is forced to retire in disgrace and under fire from the community, while elected Trustees loyal to Fleming vote to use taxpayer funds to pay for Fleming’s criminal defense attorney. District Attorney investigators armed with search warrants raid the District offices. Charges that District officials interfered with the Recall Petition process prompt a growing number of public officials to speak out against corruption and mismanagement of the District.

3. "Local Officials Speak Out: Trustees Step Aside?" Part 5-6
Part 5: Wednesday April 9the 6 p.m.
Part 6: Wednesday April 16th 6 p.m.
Following the indictment of Superintendent Fleming and his Assistant Superintendent more local officials from across South Orange County join the call for the “Old Guard” Trustees to resign from office. Even with the election of three newly elected “reform” Trustees, the Old Guard continues with “business as usual” and are found by the Orange County District Attorney to have engaged in systematic illegal secret meetings to freeze out the public from the democratic process.

Featured in the series are CUSD Recall Committee leaders and elected officials:
Tony Beall, Mayor, Rancho Santa Margarita (CUSD Recall Committee leader)
Patricia Kelly, Council member, City of Mission Viejo
Neil Blais, Councilman City of Rancho Santa Margarita
John Paul Ledesma, Councilman City of Mission Viejo
Gary Thompson, Mayor Pro-Tem City of Rancho Santa Margarita
Tom Russell, CUSD Recall Committee Leader
Jennifer Beall, CUSD Recall Committee Leader
Carmen Cave, Mayor City of Aliso Viejo
Mark Nielson, City of San Juan Capistrano Council Member
Anna Bryson, Vice Pres. CUSD Board (newly elected)
Gail Reavis, Mayor City of Mission Viejo
Ellen Addonizio, Trustee CUSD Board (newly elected)
Lon Uso, City of San Juan Capistrano Council Member
Steve Knoblock, City of San Clemente Council Member
James Fleming, Superintendent, Capistrano Unified School District
Shelia Henness, CUSD Board of Trustees


Known as “the news behind the news” the Full Disclosure Network® television programs are featured on 45 cable systems and the Internet since 1992 and produced by Emmy Award winning Host Leslie Dutton and Producer T. J. Johnston. In 2002 the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences presented a local public affairs Emmy to Full Disclosure. Channels and airtimes can be found on the website at http://www.fulldisclosure.net/ .

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