Tensions flare during Fairfax School District board meeting

Local News

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — For the second time in two days, the troubled Fairfax School District board met to interview candidates for superintendent, but unlike Monday night, things got tense.

Community members called on board president Palmer Moland to resign amid harassment and bullying allegations and also urged him to dress more appropriately for the interviews he was about to conduct with superintendent candidates. 

“You should be ashamed of yourself. Is that professional attire for superintendent interviews, to wear flip flops and basketball shorts?” one attendee said. 

Moland responded by putting forward a motion to “terminate the privilege of addressing the board” that was approved with a 3-2 vote. 

Last week, roughly two dozen people began calling for Moland’s resignation. This all comes after a recent Kern County Grand Jury report calling the board “divided and dysfunctional.” 

The board recently hired an investigative firm to look into the allegations against Moland. The firm presented its findings to the board and called on trustees to formally censure or rebuke him, but Moland, along with Trustees Jose Luis Tapia and Alma Rios, threw out a proposed censure resolution.

Some members of the community are organizing a recall campaign against Moland, Tapia and Rios.

A regularly scheduled board meeting will be held on Thursday.

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