FRESNO, California (KGPE) – The Fresno Unified School Board passed a resolution stating that the district is an anti-racist institution – but one board member voted against the non-binding resolution.
Trustee Terry Slatic was the lone no vote during Wednesday’s school board meeting.
Slatic disagreed with how the resolution was worded:
Fresno Unified School District Board of Education acknowledges the impact of
racism on the academic outcomes and social-emotional wellbeing of students.
Eyewitness News reached out to Slatic on Thursday to clarify his position.
“So if you want to make the declaration that we’re anti-racist, the implication is that we are racist,” said Trustee Slatic.
He said accepting the resolution means the district is a racist institution.
“In this type of logic let’s have a declaration in the next meeting that we are anti-homicide or anti-running over fuzzy animals in the road. That’s how my mind works, words mean things.”
School board President Keisha Thomas says the resolution is not meant to tarnish the work of past teachers and staff, but instead meant to give all students a voice.
“The fact that we had a trustee on the board minimize the fact that there is an anti-racist resolution made to protect the students is hurtful and embarrassing.”
Thomas says this is the first time in the board’s history they have passed an anti-racism resolution. Every other school board member voted to approve the motion.
Trustee Terry Slatic says he could have supported the resolution if it included language stating that the school district does not have a history of racism.