The Signal’s endorsements for College of the Canyons board of trustees are fraught with logical contradictions and hypocrisy. Four years ago, the paper reluctantly endorsed Michelle Jenkins, while calling for younger people in the Santa Clarita Valley to serve the college. The editorial board wrote, “It is unlikely Jenkins will again receive our endorsement; it is time for our valley to look forward to not just 2020 but to 2050 and beyond.” And yet, here we are in 2020, and The Signal’s editors are once again looking to the past. It is four years later and Jenkins is no more restrained or responsible than she was last election season when the editorial board chided her for unprofessional behavior. In fact, with Jenkins at the helm, the COC board has given up any responsibility for operation of college, ceding power to the college chancellor. Do we need public servants who will not serve?
Furthermore, if the reason for endorsing Jenkins is her experience, then it makes little sense that The Signal did not endorse current board member Edel Alonso, a voice for accountability at the college. Her opponent, whom The Signal has endorsed, is a man who has no experience in education whatsoever, but has the support of district leadership. Will he serve the public or will he serve the administration he is supposed to oversee and manage?
Whatever the reason for your backpedaling from four years ago, the Santa Clarita Community College District deserves real and independent oversight. I stand with COC teachers in endorsing Edel Alonso, Jerry Danielson and Sebastian Cazares. If we want to look toward the future, we need fresh voices that will hold the district accountable rather than surrendering its authority to long-serving and often over-compensated administrators.