LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – The controversy continues surrounding the leadership board of the Clark County School District. Two weeks ago, FOX5 told you how the elected members of the CCSD Board of Trustees voted to take away some powers of newly appointed non-voting members.
Newly appointed Clark County School District Trustees to play limited role in directing future of district
The four new members represent the City of Las Vegas, Henderson, North Las Vegas, and Clark County were just added to the board this year as part of a new state law. The question being asked by many people: how can the four new trustees make a difference if they have no power?
“By silencing these voices of the appointed trustees, this board is clearly ignoring the bi-partisan effort to bring new perspectives to the decision making process,” argued Nicole Rourke, Director of Government and Public Affairs for the City of Henderson. The proposal to remove even more power from the four newly appointed non-voting members of the school board was not a popular idea during public comment before the vote.
The City of Las Vegas, City of North Las Vegas, City of Henderson, even the Vegas Chamber and Retail Association of Nevada all spoke out against it.
“Municipalities continue to stand united in our position that this policy change violates the law. AB175 added non-voting members and gave them the same rights and responsibilities as voting members without limitation,” Rourke asserted.
“We hoped and continue to hope that an appointed trustee would continue to bring the viewpoints of a minority majority city to the board and foster collaboration,” revealed Leonardo Benavides, Governmental Affairs Manager for the City of North Las Vegas.
“We ask this board to be inclusive by voting ‘no’ on this item,” stated Paul Moradkhan, Senior Vice President of Governmental Affairs for the Vegas Chamber.
Trustee Linda Cavazos tried to stop the vote but was out voted, 5-2. The new trustees losing their power to request reconsideration of things approved by the board.
The trustees also approved a new, tentative agreement, a teacher contract between the district and the Clark County Education Association (CCEA).
“I know educators that drive Uber Eats, that take out payday loans, and even donate plasma, because they cannot pay their bills because this district spent nearly a year during skyrocketing inflation dragging educators through one of the most disturbing and unnecessary contract fights that I have seen in my 38 years in Clark County,” contended Jessica Jones, a CCSD teacher and CCEA Secretary.
After the meeting, FOX5 heard from one of the co-sponsors of the law to add the four trustees to the board, Assemblyman Toby Yurek who shared this statement:
Thank you for reaching out on this matter. Regarding the latest actions of the Clark County School District (CCSD) Board of Trustees to further limit the powers of non-voting members, I must express my outright indignation.
This move by the CCSD Board is nothing short of a flagrant and willful sabotage of AB175. The legislation was enacted to broaden the scope of expertise and perspective within the board, a crucial step towards rectifying years of subpar governance in one of our nation’s largest school districts. By stripping these appointed members of their already limited powers, the Board isn’t just ignoring the law; it’s actively engaging in a form of educational obstructionism.
The Board’s actions are a clear betrayal of public trust and an insult to the very principles of good governance. It’s a slap in the face to every legislator, educator, parent, and student who has called for reform. This isn’t just resistance to change; it’s a deliberate act of defiance against the will of the state legislature and, by extension, the citizens we represent.
As a co-sponsor of AB175, I see this latest development as a declaration of war against the values of transparency, accountability, and progress in our education system. I will not stand for it. We will not stand for it. If the Board thinks it can blatantly disregard state law and stifle the voices brought in to catalyze change, they are grossly mistaken.
We will take every necessary legislative and legal step to ensure compliance with AB175. The future of our education system and the well-being of our students are at stake. I will fight, tooth and nail, against these tyrannical maneuvers to ensure our children receive the quality education they deserve.
The Board must be held accountable for its actions. This is not a mere disagreement on policy; this is about protecting our democratic processes and ensuring that our children’s education is not held hostage by a group of individuals who place their personal agendas above the needs of our students.
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