Trustee Terry Slatic threatens to sue Fresno Unified

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresno Unified School Board trustee Terry Slatic is one step closer to suing the school district over an action he claims is legally and factually flawed.

The action was filed earlier this week asking once more for the censure against him to be lifted.

Slatic has now verbally asked board members to drop the censure. They refused. Now he's asked them in a formal legal document. If no action is taken, a lawsuit is expected within a few weeks.

He says he's not angry or frustrated, just tired being penalized by the indefinite censure action in effect.

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He can still meet with principals without a chaperone on school campuses but says he's being deprived opportunities to be engaged, learn and grow like other trustees are allowed.

"It allows my constituents to not be allowed to have the benefits of every other constituent in other districts that their trustees are able to provide them. And that's the definition of disenfranchisement," he says.

Slatic claims other trustees are allowed and encouraged to attend the largest annual convention to discover proven, effective ways of governing school districts. But as part of the censure he cannot attend.

Slatic filed a claim Wednesday, alleging the censure document - that every other trustee voted to impose - is without merit or substance. The legal action goes even further and says it encroaches upon matters that should be up to judges. The board has asked that he take anger management classes.

"They can believe whatever they want, the law of California is crystal clear. The only person that can impose such a thing is a judge. And there are no judges on the Board of Trustees for Fresno Unified," he says.

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Fresno Unified School District Board Trustee president Keshia Thomas hasn't seen the claim and will not comment on it. But she says there's no way the censure will be lifted.

"The idea that he has not ever once apologized to anyone for anything- it worries me. Our former board president, he threatened her when she was by herself. You can't continue to do things like this and not want to get help," she says.

Slatic has been criticized for confronting a student at Bullard High and pulling his backpack. The incident was recorded on the school's surveillance cameras. He's also been criticized for comments made to cheerleaders and other incidents that board members feel are inappropriate.
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