The school board will consider a resolution that would censure Calexico Unified Trustee Joong Kim for actions related to a letter Kim read at a Dec. 13 meeting as well as behavior at other meetings.
The Dec. 13 meeting was to discuss a potential state takeover of the school district. After reading a letter listing grievances, Kim called for a state audit and investigation of the district by the state attorney general.
In a dramatic end to the speech, Kim also called for the resignation of the school board during the meeting.
Backup information to the agenda item for censuring Kim states that Kim acted “individually without board authority” by reading his letter to Joel Montero, director of the Fiscal Crisis and Management Assistance Team, “without consideration to board meeting protocol and in direct opposition to the normal course of district business.”
The letter is described as “accusatory, inflammatory, and disruptive to the board’s legislative process,” and as containing “many false, misleading and inaccurate statements.”
It continues that through “unprofessional behavior,” Kim breached the board’s code of ethics and “is demonstrative of a pattern of behavior that he has engaged in over the course of several months, including making various false and defamatory statements regarding fraud and nepotism during and outside board meetings, threatening other district board trustees and making unprofessional, false, misleading, and inaccurate comments using social networking media.”
“The public has a right to know the information, and we have to make a different decision based on the children’s and the community’s benefit,” Kim said. “They’re ganging up on me.”
In an added twist, Kim added an agenda item requesting the termination of legal services by the district’s attorney, Yuri Calderón.
The backup documents provided by Kim are copies of newspaper articles on the Sweetwater school district scandal, which included references to Calderón’s law firm GCR LLP.
Calderón said that no allegations have been brought against the law firm regarding Sweetwater.
“I understand that Mr. Kim wants to use the (San Diego) Union-Tribune’s reference to us, but it’s really unrelated to any service we provided to the school district or our work as general counsel there,” he said.
“Mr. Kim has expressed his opinions about the firm at the board meetings, and I wholeheartedly disagree with his perception of the work that we’ve done, particularly in the quality of our work or the service we’ve provided the district.”
All Calexico Unified School District meetings are open to the public.
Staff Writer Chelcey Adami can be reached at 760-337-3452 or firstname.lastname@example.org