$1 Million, Seriously?


Before today, this story was completely controlled by partisan politics; local  Republicans were opposing the hiring of KimOanh Nguyen-Lam to the Westminster Superintendent of schools because she’s a Democrat.

And the Westminster School Board, specifically JoAnn Purcell, Judy Ahrens, and Jim Reed, hired Nguyen-Lam based on her qualifications and experience, and then fired her a few days later after getting some heat from the Van Tran Thug Squad.

And Central OC is definitely lacking Democratic Vietnamese representation—so the hiring of Nguyen-Lam was exciting for us progressives, but this is politics, and we all know and understand the game.

Today, this story just got weird, and it’s no longer about what party Nguyen-Lam belongs to. From today’s Orange County Register:

A Garden Grove Unified School District trustee whom Westminster School Board members voted to hire as superintendent but later fired has filed a complaint seeking more than $1 million in damages, immediate reinstatement and a public apology.

A demand for immediate reinstatement…okay, I’m with you.
A public apology…I understand this part.
A million bucks…what the hell?!?

Nguyen-Lam is hurt…she knows that the recent election of Bridgewaters, Mangold, and Nguyen pretty much solidifies that she will not be the Superintendent of Westminster Schools.

But trying to milk the already under-funded school district of $1 million is beyond justifiable.

[Orange County Register] [Previous posts regarding Nguyen-Lam]

  6 comments for “$1 Million, Seriously?

  1. demmother
    December 6, 2006 at 5:09 pm

    Take the money and put it into a special grass roots education program within the district. I bet it does a better job for the kids who need help in English Language Development – perhaps those kids can get out of the special education classes thay hav been warehoused in.

  2. December 6, 2006 at 5:09 pm

    The $1mil is done for a number of reasons, first it’s hard to get attorneys to take this kind of case. 2) It gets the attn. of the district and well other reasons too.

    This story, as I understand it, is pretty heinous. and, well, that’s it… it’s really bad.

  3. pshcyo watcher
    December 6, 2006 at 5:33 pm

    This board is out of control. I certainly would ask for $1 million — for the same reason I would vote for Rocco in Orange. The sooner a broken district goes into recievership, the quicker it will begin to focus on educating rather than playing games with being political.

  4. Barack's Wife
    December 6, 2006 at 6:14 pm

    This whole soap opera started because the WTA didn’t want Board Trustee Sergio Contreras to have his pick for Superintendent while the Teachers were still without a contract. While I understand the frustration on part of the teachers, they purposefully tried to destroy the reputation of this extremely talented and compassionate woman. Now the WSD and the WTA will pay the price – in compensation and reputation.

  5. wondering
    December 7, 2006 at 9:11 am

    “the WTA didn’t want Board Trustee Sergio Contreras to have his pick for Superintendent while the Teachers were still without a contract.”

    Though I don’t doubt that the union was behind it, I don’t understand why they took on Contreras. I thought he was pro-union.

  6. Publius
    December 7, 2006 at 10:46 am

    The Westminster Teacher’s Association just doesn’t get it politically. Sergio wasn’t their guy when he ran and won. After he took office, the WTA should have approached Contreras to find common ground. Instead they held onto their grudge and refused to support him. Their loss. He could have been their biggest ally. So the WTA continues to try to punish him and keep him from doing what’s best for the kids. Will they ever learn?

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