Darcie Green Resigns from Santa Clara County Board of Education

Santa Clara County Board of Education member Darcie Green says she is resigning from the board “to avoid a long, messy legal battle to defend my seat.”

“The right thing to do is resign,” she explains, saying she’s sending a letter to the board at 3pm today.

Green was appointed to the board Oct. 17 of last year to fill a vacancy in Board Trustee Area 6, which was created by the resignation of Craig Mann. New district lines were drawn following Mann’s re-election in 2010.

In making the appointment, the County Board relied on its legal counsel’s opinion that it could appoint a candidate who lived in either the district that existed before redistricting, or the new one. That turned out to be a mistake, according to deputy district attorney John Chase.

Green calls it “a bitter pill to swallow.” She had resigned a seat she was elected to in November 2010 on the Alum Rock Union School District Board of Trustees to accept the county appointment.

“The board thought that it was doing the right thing,” Green says, adding that she doesn’t fault her colleagues.

“We need to take this off the table and not spend any resources on it. There’s no legal defense.”

“Whether they decide to appoint or hold an election, I plan on participating. If they appoint, I hope they’ll consider me,” she continues. “I’ve thought about it every day, and I think this is the right thing to do.”

Update:

The following is a letter that Green emailed out this afternoon:

Friends,

I have always been committed to do what is best for young people in my community and to act to ensure public trust in government.  It is with this in mind, that I write this letter.

In October, I applied to the Santa Clara County Board of Education to fill the vacancy left by former Trustee Craig Mann.  As you know, I was ultimately appointed.  A resident of Alum Rock and elected member of the Alum Rock School District Board of Trustees, I applied based on a call for applicants released by the County Office of Education asking for current residents of the Mount Pleasant, Franklin-McKinley, Alum Rock, and specified areas of the San Jose Unified School District.  I participated in what was widely recognized as a transparent, organized, and fair selection process inclusive of all district and community stakeholders.  It was an honor to be appointed and it has been an honor to serve the residents of my Trustee Area and this County.
 

Sometime after my appointment, the validity of the appointment came into legal question.  This issue lies in the decision of the Board to appoint a Trustee from the Trustee Area reflective of the 2011 redistricting process and the 2010 Census, rather than the previous Trustee Area Mr. Mann represented.  While the decision to appoint from the redistricted Trustee Area happened prior to my appointment, as a member of this Board I want to share in the responsibility to resolve this issue quickly and with the least impact to the County Board of Education, the important work the County Board does, and most importantly, the residents and students of our County.
 

As a result, I have decided to resign from my appointed position on this Board. 

As a friend, you know I remain just as committed to service and to the vision for children expressed by the County Board as I was the day I applied for appointment.  I have ensured that my residency will reflect the pre-redistricted Trustee Area boundary and intend to participate in whatever vacancy fulfillment process the Board chooses to use in the future.
 

The work of this Board and the Office of Education is critically important to the success of students in our County.  It is my hope that my resignation will allow the Board to quickly and transparently correct this matter and bring the focus of their efforts back to students in Santa Clara County.
 

I hope I can count on your support through whatever process – either appointment or election – that the County Board decides to fill this vacancy.  Please look for further email updates about how you can help.

Thank you,

Darcie Green

 

 

8 Comments

    • The voters appreciate you finally deciding to do the right thing. After 5 months of abstaining from voting on SCCOE matters, I’m not sure why it took you so long to resign. And to blame it on others technical errors is no excuse for your lack of integrity. It’s funny that it happens to be about the same time span Shirakawa took to notice his errors.

      Consequently, leaving the Alum Rock school board abruptly and then pushing your two friends of yours, who happen to be Shirakawa staffers into the ARUSD board seats, is short from being honorable. Its a shame your efforts to finagle a seat for yourself on the Santa Clara County Board could have been better served by you staying put in Alum Rock and completing your term.

      • Green made a mistake by leaving her Alum Rock seat for the County seat.  There’s nothing wrong with ambition but there is so much work to be done in Alum Rock and they’re in dire straights financially they could have used her continued leadership.

        It is hard to find fault with her for the appointment mess that rests firmly on the shoulders of the legal counsel to the Board. What a huge mistake to give an opinion without thoroughly checking the legality! 

        Trying to tie Shirakawa’s thieving ways to Green is a stretch since the other person who wanted the seat (Javier Gonzalez) was the Shirakawa darling that he and Xavier Campos spent a lot of time and dare I say it, pcard money smoozing the board to get him appointed.  Green is outside the loop of that camp and that’s the main reason she is still viable as an actual leader.  Their corruption is epic, her ambition tripped her up.

        • I agree with your comments Aware D5. However Dem or Repub saying “And to blame it on others technical errors is no excuse for your lack of integrity overly harsh. Green did the right thing. The unfortunate series of events that occurred were out of her control. She is an example of a community leader who demonstrates integrity.

    • Great comments Aware D5. But it gets real old when we see people moving from one district to another just to jockey for a political seat. I don’t know how they can represent the community effectively that they know nothing about. Speaking of school board resignations, why hasn’t the resignation of Berryessa School Board Member David Neighbors made the paper? Word has it he abruptly resigned this month.

  1. 1. I congratulate Darcie Green for doing the right thing, even though I think it took longer for her to do so than it should have.
    2. The duty to competently research where the valid appointive candidates had to reside on Mann’s resignation fell squarely on the shoulders of the SCCOE’s Chief Executive (over-$300K/year salaried) Dr. De La Torre, and having failed in competently carrying out that duty initially, he then had the responsibility for declaring the seat unfilled upon receiving D.A. Rosen’s letter.  Shame on him for putting Ms. Green in the position of having to do his job for him.
    3. Ms. Green’s allusion to “appointment” as an option for filling the seat Mann vacated by resignation reflects a misunderstanding of the Statute (Ed. Code Sec. 5090) on her part, because 5090 requires the Superintendent to call an Election if a seat does not get filled by appointment within 60 days of the Trustee’s resignation. By her own admission, Green’s appointment lacked legitimacy because she did not live in the requisite geographic area.  Therefore, the fact that for many months she physically sat in Mann’s seat does not mean that she ever held Mann’s Official position as Trustee—only a person who lived in Mann’s area could hold that position—and one cannot “resign from” or “vacate” a position one never has held! [By analogy, if a friendly Secret Service Agent allowed me to sit in Obama’s seat in the Oval Office, that would not confer on me the position of President of the U.S., nor the power to make Joe Biden “President” by virtue of writing a “letter of resignation” and handing it to John Kerry].
    4. According to Ed. Code Sec. 5091(a), “In the event that a governing board fails to make a provisional
    appointment or order an election within the prescribed 60-day period as required by this section, the county superintendent of schools shall order an election to fill the vacancy.”  The wording of this Law seems pretty clear, namely, that De La Torre now has the legal obligation to “order an election to fill the vacancy.”
    http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displaycode?section=edc&group=05001-06000&file=5090-5095