FUSD Election Focus

October 27, 2008 9:11:00 PM PDT
The race to fill the board of the fourth largest school district in the state is heating up. Eight candidates are vying for three seats on the Fresno Unified School Board.Candidate for School Board Larry Moore said, "They showed poor judgment ... I believe they're out of touch with the community."

Larry Moore former president of the Fresno Teachers Association and longtime Fresno educator believes the Fresno Unified School Board has no business paying Superintendent Michael Hanson $336 thousand dollars a year.

Larry Moore said, "It's not my decision that on the day before the governor of California said the state of California is on the verge of bankruptcy gave our superintendent a 62 percent raise ... to $336 thousand dollars ... that's almost as much as the president of the united states.

Moore is backed by the Fresno Teacher's Association ... As are two other candidates ... Incumbent Carol Mills and newcomer Virginia Hermosillo. Moore says if he is elected, he will work to get more money to the classroom. Current board member Manuel Nunez who is running for re-election defends the board's decision to pay Hanson such a large salary.

Manuel Nunez said, "Good superintendents for school districts our size are not very abundant ... so my thought was we were going to have to spend a lot of money doing a nationwide search if we were going to have to replace him."

Manuel Nunez along with Incumbent Janet Ryan and newcomer Natalie Clark have the support of Fresno Citizens for Good Government ... Which includes former Fresno County Schools Chief Pete Mehas.

"Your vote for the Fresno Unified School Board is critical for our children's education"

In this recent television ad Mehas says the goal of Larry Moore, Carol Mills and Virginia Hermosillo is to unseat Superintendent Hanson.

Larry Moore said, "Can I work with Mr. Hanson? Do I think he's done some good things, yes. But will I be a rubber stamp for the administration? No!"

The Fresno Teacher's Association has spent upwards of $75-thousand dollars on the campaign so far ... Nunez alone has spent $35-thousand dollars ... He says its the first time he's spent a dime on campaigning in his 18 years on the board.

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