The Governator visiting South County Tomorrow, Privately…

Yes, you read that right. The Governator is going to be making a public appearance at a private school in Orange County and to add insult to injury, thousands of parents of children in public school plan on protesting this appearance. Do you blame them?

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO – Hundreds of parents, students and teachers from across South County are expected to surround a private school where the governor is rumored to be making an appearance Thursday to protest his proposed $4 billion cut to K-12 education.Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is widely believed to be making an unannounced stop at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School in San Juan Capistrano for an afternoon pep rally.

St. Margaret’s spokeswoman Anne Mack referred all questions about the appearance to the governor’s office, which would not confirm his attendance.

“We respect the right of people to express their concerns through peaceful demonstration … and we want the very best for all students in Orange County and California,” Mack said in a prepared statement.

OC Register

The OC Register fails to point out the irony regarding the planned visit to a private school while the Governor puts forth that the best way to deal with the budget shortfall is to cut public education. South County schools are expected to lose a total of 46 million in funding to Capistrano and Saddleback School Districts which educate 85,000 children. What would this private school need a “pep rally” for? Are they laying off teachers and scaling back on their educational standards because of the Governor’s badly managed fiscal plan? Probably not.

So why bother Arnold? Why do you need to be shoring up support with private schools when the bulk of your constituents have children in public schools? Maybe Arnold will be urging this and other schools to hire the laid off teachers since they will probably have a complete landslide of applicants for private education. Can’t have their classroom sizes affected, now can we?

As Robert in Monterey has pointed out, Arnold could easily reinstate the Vehicle License Fee which would cost the average two car household an extra $300 a year and raise over an estimated six billion in revenue and short circuit these cuts (although the pink slips have already been handed out and the students have already been affected by the threat of cuts). For most families with multiple children, three hundred a year is much cheaper than having to send your child to a private school. I personally believe that public education is one of those things that warrants such action, but then you would probably just call me a liberal.

Heather Pritchard

I'm new to political blogging but have been writing most of my life about different things. I campaigned for President Clinton when he was just Governor Clinton in Orange County. I graduated from Smith College with a BA in English and a minor in Film. I work full time, have a lovely four year old daughter named Charlotte, my husband teaches full time at Cerritos College in Norwalk in the Music Department. Gary has a Ph.D in Ethnomusicology from UCI. I hope to go back to school in some form or another, maybe sociology or economics. I've even thought of Law school. Our newest edition to the household is our Weimaraner Sophie. 

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  4 comments for “The Governator visiting South County Tomorrow, Privately…

  1. April 9, 2008 at 8:58 pm

    Woohoo! This is only a couple hundred yards from my house! I’ll be there.

  2. April 9, 2008 at 9:17 pm

    Gila, I have a feeling the whole thing was canceled on account of the threat of protest, but who knows, maybe he really wants them to “Make his day”.

  3. Dan Chmielewski
    April 9, 2008 at 10:31 pm

    a pep rally? For what? Failed Republican leadership?

  4. April 11, 2008 at 7:52 am

    I didn’t go to this because I decided instead to take my frustrations out on a tree stump we’ve been working on removing. However, I got some additional information.

    Apparently Arnold’s planned visit to St. Margaret’s was organized at the request of Mimi Walters, whose kids go to the school. (She’s responsible for what’s probably the largest education budget in the world but she can’t be bothered to send her kids to south OC’s public schools, which have some of the highest test scores in California.)

    According to the Capistrano Dispatch, which is unequivocally the BEST local newspaper on the PLANET: Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s motorcade pulled into downtown San Juan Capistrano Thursday evening amid hundreds of protesters crticizing his support of the Foothill-South toll road and deep cuts to education. Schwarzenegger entered the back room of El Adobe through the side gate and did not acknowledge about 300 people lining both sides of Camino Capistrano. There was no way he missed the sign-waiving, whistle-blowing crowd, that broke into chants of “Shame on You” and “Save Our Schools” when the CHP-escorted black SUVs arrived.

    The demonstrations started at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School earlier in the afternoon: Schwarzenegger was supposed to attend a rally there in honor of the CIF-champion football team, but canceled because of the protests. A St. Margaret’s spokeswoman, who had declined to even confirm the governor was set to appear, said the school supported the right to protest. Not everyone did, though: Some motorists slowed, rolled down their windows and yelled at the protesters because of the cancellation.

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