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Letter: Trustee Chris Arend responds to criticism 

letter to the editor

To the editor,

This letter responds to Mr. Allan Stevo’s letter of Nov. 7. Mr. Stevo has repeatedly graced PRJUSD board meetings with his presence and, at least twice, disruptive conduct. Contrary to his initial statements, I have never worked with him on anything. We have had at most a couple of chats when we have run into each other at local events. His criticism of my performance during my four years on the board is laughable.

My open letter to the voters in Area 1 of the PRJUSD describes my record, be it in handling the terrible financial situation and other scandals that arose during the administration of Superintendent Chris Williams as well as the aftermath with the Grand Jury, navigating the “culture war” issues by negotiating and obtaining the adoption of our “constructive” (= no CRT) ethnic studies course as well as authoring and pushing through the PRJUSD’s resolution banning Critical Race Theory in our schools, not to mention increasing transparency by pushing through easy access to classrooms for trustees and members of the public.

Mr. Stevo’s support for Peter Byrne is no surprise. Both Mr. Stevo and Mr. Byrne have taken positions, especially on gender identity matters which, if adopted by the board, would immediately trigger costly litigation.

For example, they both want the PRJUSD to violate Cal. Ed Code section 221.5 f, which was adopted eight years ago and mandates access to sex-segregated facilities and activities on the basis of “gender identity” and not biological sex.

The supporters of such “civil disobedience” argue that this statute is unconstitutional, but they have not even made the effort to obtain competent legal advice on this point, let alone consider the potentially disastrous financial consequences for the district and board members personally of violating the statute.

Mr. Byrne’s positions on many other issues frequently expressed during public comment at board meetings are just as extreme.

Contrary to the relatively large expenditures by other candidates and their supporters for mailers, lawn signs and other materials which spout the standard platitudes and provide little or no information about the candidate, I have hand distributed my open letter to more than 2,000 households in Area 1.

Those voters who have not already cast their ballots can read that letter again and then decide if they would like me to continue providing service to the PRJUSD.

Best regards,
Christopher Arend

Editor’s note: Opinion pieces and letters to the editor are the personal opinions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Paso Robles Daily News or its staff. We welcome letters from local residents regarding relevant local topics. To submit one, click here.

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