FRESNO, California (KSEE) – Fresno Unified Trustee Terry Slatic is threatening to sue the school district if the board doesn’t lift parts of his censure, unanimously approved by the board in August.
The censure came after a series of incidents involving students and staff in the district including a meeting with the Bullard High School cheer team where some students and parents say he used intimidation to keep them from talking about a blackface incident in June. Slatic denies those accusations.
The topic of his censure is scheduled to come up again during Wednesday’s school board meeting.
Slatic said now that a temporary restraining order sought by a Bullard High School cheerleader was denied by a judge, he’s ready to shift his legal focus on the school district and fight his censure in court.
Since the censure, he’s been prohibited from some meetings, required to have a chaperone on school campuses and removed from some leadership and committee roles until he takes an anger management class.
“You can’t take stuff away from people unless you’re a judge there aren’t any judges on the school board so you can’t take stuff away that makes it punitive, therefore illegal,” said Slatic.
“I don’t see any way he could sue us. We aren’t the ones who have taken the actions he’s taken, that shouldn’t have happened,” said board President Keshia Thomas.
Thomas said Tuesday she is looking forward to the discussion if it helps the board move forward in a positive direction but said Slatic has continued to overstep in his role and hasn’t changed his behavior since the censure.
“We are not there to be the principal or president or anything else on the campus. We are there to lend a helping hand and make sure things are done to increase test scores, make sure children are safe,” said Thomas.
“I’ll happily go into retirement when the voters of northwest Fresno say we don’t need you anymore. Until then, I’m going to do everything I can to fix this school district and hold them accountable for the cover-ups and broken things,” said Slatic.
There is no vote during Wednesday’s board meeting. The topic is planned to come up toward the end of the meeting at 7:45 p.m. according to the agenda.