PAC, SPC faculty petition demands District 7 trustee recall

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Faculty members circulate a petition saying Yvonne Katz is “anti-faculty.”

By Bleah B. Patterson

bpatterson13@alamo.edu 

A petition has been circulating through the five Alamo Colleges for three weeks demanding the recall of District 7 trustee Yvonne Katz.

In the article, “Faculty members at Alamo Colleges say they’re not consulted on curricular decisions,” from Inside Higher Ed, a national education publication, cited an email from Katz to Chancellor Bruce Leslie that offended some faculty members.

In the email, she wrote, “We truly need the early retirement plan to pass so we can get some of the old farts out and let the younger, excited, enthused ones take the new teaching and leadership positions.”

The Texas Workforce Commission specifies, “The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) forbids discrimination against people who are age 40 or older. The sections below address related situations.”

“Since she’s pretty aged herself, it’s kind of ironic,” said Lang Coleman of the St. Philip’s College chapter of the American Association of Uni-versity Professors, or AAUP.

Coleman said the petitions have been distributed to all of the Alamo Colleges though not everyone agrees.

Librarian Celita DeArmond, president of this college’s chapter of AAUP, said while she has seen the petition, “I know I’m not circulating it here.”

Coleman said the petitions will circulate for two more weeks. “Around Thanksgiving, we’ll bring them back in and count.”

According to the ACCD board of trustees policy “a public officer … may be removed from office if a court agrees with a written petition for removal filed in a district court of the county in which the officer resides.”

This means for Katz to be effectively recalled, all signatures on the petition must come from her constituents, residents of District 7.

A trustee can also be recalled if convicted of a felony, found guilty of incompetency, misconduct or intoxication.

Another reason for the removal of a trustee is for nonattendance at board meetings.

Also joining the effort to recall Katz is Communities Organized for Public Service Metro Alliance, a city community “organized for public service in schools, congregations and unions on behalf of families,” according to the website, copsmetro.wordpress.com.

“We believe she is a problem because it shows a cognitive inability to be flexible and make important decisions without bias,” Coleman said. “I mean, gosh, this email was cited by a national publication.”

Katz is blatantly anti-faculty, he said.

Coleman said he does not know how many signatures have been collected so far.

“Once we collect the signatures, if there are enough, we’ll take them to the board. Specifically, we’ll take them to Chairperson (Anna) Bustamante,” he said.

“But because the board has a history of not listening, we’ll find a state representative to take this to,” Coleman said.

He said he’s not sure which representative they will approach yet.

The Ranger has asked Leslie and Katz for confirmation the email was sent but has had no response.

The Ranger has also requested from the ACCD public relations office emails between trustees and Leslie but they did not provide them by deadline.

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