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I am not an attorney and my comments shouldn’t be regarded as legal advice. They are, however, my opinion based on my interpretation of the laws and backed by the evidence I have shown in this article.
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Newberg Education Association Teacher Union Sues the Newberg Public School District and School Board Directors
As mentioned in a previous article, Everything You Need to Know About the Newberg School Board Lawsuits That The Newberg Graphic Isn’t Telling You, there has been two lawsuits involving the Newberg school district;
One lawsuit is by the school directors harassed by Newberg Equity in Education members,
A second lawsuit was filed by the Newberg Equity in Education members against Newberg public school board directors for hiring attorney Tyler Smith, which they claim was done in violation of public meeting laws.
There is now a third lawsuit filed by the the teacher union Newberg Education Association against the district for the recent implementation of a policy to ban politically divisive symbols causing chaos in the school district, such as the Black Lives Matter and pride flag variations.
This article will be discussing the third lawsuit, which you can read the filing of by clicking here to download it.
I’ll save you some time though, because my analysis will cover the letter sent by the law firm representing the teacher union, which pretty much covers the same thing the filing does.
Meet the Law Firm Representing the Teacher’s Union
The law firm representing the teacher’s union is Bennet-Hartman, based in Portland, Oregon.
As seen on their website, Bennet-Hartman have a Black Lives Matter racial justice affirmation on their site.
So, we’re already dealing with some zealots who are drinking the Critical race theory Kool-Aid. That’s actually a good thing for the school district, in my opinion, because that means they are very bad lawyers who have enormous difficulty employing critical thinking and logic. They filter everything through the lens of their insanity, and not by what the laws actually say.
I also want to point out the following about the law firm: on their website, they gloat about prior “wins” that include getting a teacher arrested for DUI and drug possession their job back through a lawsuit, and getting another teacher who engaged in “sexual conduct” in the classroom their job back as well.
This sure is a very lovely law firm the Newberg teacher union chose to represent them, isn’t it? They have a very esteemed client roster, to be sure, whose ranks they are now among.
Now, I’m not saying criminals don’t deserve legal representation, but there is a difference between providing adequate representation and making the world a worst place by getting dirtbags their jobs as teachers back. This firm seems to be making our communities a worse place to live and profiting by doing so.
Anyway, before they filed the lawsuit, a demand letter was first sent to the Newberg public school board. I obtained a copy of this letter, received as part of a public records request to the Newberg school district, which I am now publishing for the public to read,
There are a few obvious problems with this letter that I can see already, as well as in the actual complaint itself, and I’m not even a lawyer.
Why I Believe the Lawsuit Should be Dismissed Entirely
I will list the problems I see with this complaint, which I believe should result in it being dismissed entirely with prejudice. It may not be, but this is my opinion on why it ought to be.
1. Under the prior school board administration, they banned Confederate flags from the school campuses. The teacher union had absolutely no problem with banning the Confederate flag from Newberg school campuses and in fact were in favor of this decision; they only have a problem when it is Black Lives Matter and pride flags being banned, because their goal in banning other symbols was to eliminate competition for their political cult, not because they actually care about protecting students from racism or care about constitutional rights to free speech.
By contrast, the current school board banned all politically divisive symbols, as is their right per Supreme Court decision Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier. No state agency, or even state or federal court, has any authority to restrict this right. Period.
Public schools are a limited public forum and free speech can be restricted within the schools when it interferes with the mission of the school, which is presently happening in the Newberg school district due to how these symbols are being used by the teacher union itself.
2. The Public Employee Collective Bargaining Act does not give school employees the right to wear political symbols inside schools, nor the right to violate ORS 260.432 Solicitation of public employees, which is what the faculty members are using these symbols to do.
3. I have published over 40 articles detailing the ways in which the BLM and pride flags are causing massive disruptions in the Newberg school district, as the group is motivated to indoctrinate students into political ideology for the purpose of “changing the voting culture” of Newberg, as said plainly by Kristen Stoller, one of the key leaders of the Newberg Equity in Education group, which the plaintiffs and most of the school district faculty (including the president and vice president of the teacher union) are members of,
They have also removed the American flags from classrooms, replacing them with the BLM and pride flags, which means the group is compelling teachers to violate ORS 339.875 Procurement, display and salute of flags, which is a crime.
There is actually a huge thread from within the Newberg Equity in Education group that shows as a collective group, they hate the American flag and wish to replace it with their symbols. The above TikTok video was created by a member of faculty, Angie Spracher, as a way to virtue signal to the group that she was one of them.
The stated goal of this activity is to dismantle America,
By the way, user “Lu Pita” is Guadalupe Martinez Zapata, Vice-Chair of the Oregon Department of Education.
So, there is no “presumption of disruption“; it is abundantly clear that these symbols are being used to disrupt the school’s mission and purpose by the teachers themselves. Therefore, the ban on these symbols has been done for a valid reason.
The most hilarious thing about this, in my view, is that this letter and the actual complaint itself prove beyond all doubt that the teacher’s union is actively engaging in a violation of ORS 260.432 Solicitation of public employees and the even the Hatch Act.
In my opinion, the teacher’s union contract ought to be dissolved entirely for these organized, serial and egregious violations that are detouring the school from its intended purpose to instead serve the agenda of the Yamhill County Democrats party.
So egregious that we now have a High school student performing in drag shows to perform while faculty throw dollars at him,
5. I took a look at the bargaining agreement sections that were mentioned. You can download it here for yourself.
The sections of the bargaining agreement that are cited in the demand letter are these parts,
This is likely in reference to the attempt by the teacher union to create a modified version of their logo to incorporate the trans-racial pride flag colors. In my opinion, because this change was specifically made to protest the policy, it is an inflammatory change to the design and therefore is not protected by the terms of the Collective bargaining agreement. This change was specifically done to cause conflict.
Proof that it was changed to be inflammatory is in the Newberg Equity in Education group itself (which I already published, by the way. You guys in the union really don’t have good lawyers if they overlooked that) where they talked about doing this very thing.
As you can see, the design change was created to oppose the ban. That is inflammatory and political by its very nature.
I have a large number of other examples of the teacher union engaging in the use of these symbols specifically in violation of ORS 260.432 Solicitation of public employees in Meet the Newberg, Oregon Mafia Led by Elected Officials and Other Community Leaders, sub-section 10.2 The Newberg Teacher’s Union.
Here are the other sections of the agreement mentioned by the lawsuit,
In my opinion, these are all nonsensical claims.
- Pins, posters and other apparel do not provide “safety”. No one is going to think they can’t do or say something because you wore a t-shirt or hanged a poster.
- The banning of politically divisive symbols is not equal to discrimination; no one is born with symbols tattooed onto their bodies. For the same reason a person cannot claim they are justified to teach children while dressed like a bondage gimp due to their sexual kinks, teachers are also not allowed to claim they can wear and display political symbols due to sexual orientation and other things, either. These are political symbols and they are NOT universally adopted symbols, either. They represent specific ideological beliefs.
- Furthermore, the sections do not say that teachers can indoctrinate children into their personal political ideologies and adjust curriculum to do so. If you ask me, the culture of bullying is created by the faculty who are doing this, not the school board who is trying to put an end to it.
Therefore, I see no violations of the Collective bargaining agreement by the implementation of the policy. If anything, the termination of an employee who showed up to work in “blackface” as a form of political protest (according to the employee, they were actually dressed like Rosa Parks on a themed school day about historical figures) shows beyond doubt that the teacher union understands they don’t have a right to political protest in the schools, since the teacher union supported the termination of that employee. This incident makes the lawsuit of the teacher union incredibly hypocritical.
6. The lawsuit planning started long before the ban happened.
As I showed in detail in my article, Everything You Need to Know About the Newberg School Board Lawsuits That The Newberg Graphic Isn’t Telling You, sub-section 2 How the Newberg Equity in Education Mafia Plotted Their Lawsuit, the lawsuit was planned by the teacher union within the Newberg Equity in Education group (which school board directors Brandy Penner, Rebecca Piros and Ines Pena are key members of). The planning started as soon as the first school board meeting took place after the election resulted in several of their members losing seats to the other conservative members of the school board. The desire to file a lawsuit really has nothing to do with the policy, and is just something they intended to do from the beginning because they lost an election.
6. Prior case law makes it clear the policy is constitutionally valid.
This was actually the opinion of the attorney hired by the School district and explained to Superintendent Joe Morelock, in a letter I gained access to as part of a cache of documents released via a public records request. You can read the full letter yourself and my comments on it in my previous article, Newberg School District Attorney Says Politically Divisive Flag Ban “Most Likely Will Withstand a Constitutional Challenge”.
The specific cases I mentioned are,
- Supreme Court decision Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier
- Supreme Court decision, Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit decision, Dariano v. Morgan Hill Unified School District.
These cases show that the Newberg school board has full authority to ban politically divisive symbols from the schools when they cause disruption to the intended mission of the school, which as my articles show, clearly is happening.
7. This part that cites the Oregon Department of Education memo is pure nonsense.
“The ODE Resolution makes clear, speaking out against racism and in support of Black Lives is not a matter implicating “political” activity prohibited by the Federal or State Hatch Acts.“
It is nonsense because the Oregon Department of Education does not get to decide what the laws are, and whether or not what kind of speech is political activity and which is not. These things are defined by the laws and interpreted by the courts. The Oregon Department of Education can only set policy guidelines based on the law, and it it has no legal authority to claim the Black Lives Matter organization symbols (which operates a political action committee) is not political speech — its incorporation status and activities clearly shows that it is.
As such, it seems clear to me that the Oregon Department of Education, whose Vice Chair Guadalupe Martinez Zapata, Vice-Chair of the Oregon Department of Education colluded with the teacher’s union, did not have any authority to issue such a proclamation in the first place and the memo is in conflict with the laws, such as ORS 260.432 Solicitation of public employees.
I would argue that Zapata’s involvement in the Newberg Equity in Education group and her statements to members of the teacher union in it that violate ORS 260.432 Solicitation of public employees, ORS 182.030 Employment of persons advocating violent overthrow of the Government of the United States or Oregon prohibited, ORS 260.532 False publication relating to candidate or measure, and ORS 162.415 Official misconduct in the first degree, are further evidence of the disruption these political symbols are causing in the Newberg school district, since it is encouraging so many public employees to break numerous laws.
The relevant sections where you can see how Oregon Department of Education Vice Chair Guadalupe Martinez Zapata did these things comes from Meet the Newberg, Oregon Mafia Led by Elected Officials and Other Community Leaders, subsections,
- 10.8 Other Important NEEd Members Include County and State Officials
- 10.9 NEEd Group Is Engaging in Seditious Acts
- 10 Oregon Board of Education Abuses To Assist NEEd
8. The so-called “Anti-Racism Resolution” had nothing to do with the Newberg public school district and was entirely political in nature.
As the lawsuit filing says itself, the proclamation was made because of the George Floyd case, which occurred in an entirely different state and nothing to do with any school. Consequently, it had NOTHING to with Newberg or its schools. As such, it was an entirely political proclamation serving no useful or relevant purpose for the district. It was about the personal agenda of the people who wrote it, not the district and its students or the parents as a collective group. The vast majority of residents in Newberg disagreed with it, which is why their group lost election seats in the first place.
There is no reason to keep it, especially when it was designed to justify the teaching of Critical Race Theory’s definition of “Racism” in the Newberg Public Schools (NPS) district, as detailed by Beth Woolsey in the Newberg Equity in Education, whose members controlled the Newberg school board at the time,
As I have shown by their own communications, their version of “racism” is not the definition everyone else believes in. It’s the CRT version that says only white people can be racist, which itself is an inherently racist viewpoint to express.
When your definition of racism means it has to benefit “White people”, it’s clear as day you’re not talking about the actual definition of racism. You’re talking about your Critical Race Theory cult version of racism, which says racial prejudice practiced by “blacks” and “browns” is A-OKAY.
(I also talked about this at length in Meet the Newberg, Oregon Mafia Led by Elected Officials and Other Community Leaders, sub-section 8 What Is the Goal of the Newberg Equity in Education Mafia Cult?)
Furthermore, the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, Andrew Gallagher, Jennifer Schneider, Katherine Villalobos and Sara Linnertz, are all members of the Newberg Equity in Education group, who have engaged in this conspiracy against the school district to use the schools to indoctrinate children into Critical Race Theory,
For the other two, you’ll need to download these two huge files (open them in a Paint program and then zoom in, its a vector file so you won’t lose quality) that show every member of Newberg Equity in Education whose name started with a K and every member whose name started with a S.
(I have this for the whole alphabet, by the way. It’s what I used to make the downloadable spreadsheet of their member list)
To make it easier for people though, I have highlighted their entries and embedded them here,
Consequently, the lawsuit is just another aspect of their conspiracy, itself an act of political protest that proves why the teacher union ought to be dissolved. It is being used for entirely political purpose, and is not fulfilling its actual mission anymore.
9. Parents have complained about the indoctrination of children into the fringe ideologies for a long time.
I have personally spoken with many parents who have complaints about the school because teachers are indoctrinating the kids, and the bullying that happens when they do not comply with the pressure to be indoctrinated. I have been told by many parents in Newberg they took their kids out of the public school system specifically to avoid them being indoctrinated into the cult’s ideology. The district is losing students because of what the teacher union is doing on behalf of the cult they are part of.
While I will not publish all of these parents accounts to protect their privacy, what I will publish is this Newberg parent’s account, which is already available in a video.
The PFLAG members she mentions are the same members in the school system, using these symbols to indoctrinate the kids into fringe ideologies and causing major problems in the student’s lives.
At this point, I think I have provided enough counter-evidence that shows the claims of the lawsuit are without merit and that the ban on political symbols was appropriately made. I do personally agree with what the conservative majority of the school board have done, the banning of the political symbols in the district, as I said during my public comments on the situation at several Newberg school board meetings.
I am not an attorney and my comments shouldn’t be regarded as legal advice. They are, however, my opinion based on my interpretation of the laws and backed by the evidence I have shown in this article.
Everyone is free to make up their own minds after reviewing the evidence, but I think most people will agree, the lawsuit is frivolous and has been designed to waste the school funds and consume time. I believe it is just another harassment tactic this cult has engaged in against the School board directors who are trying to stop them from exploiting children in the Newberg school district.
A huge thank you for all your hard work , Carey !!
What is the evidence that “Lu Pita” is Guadalupe Martinez Zapata? I’ve tried to substantiate this via google search, but haven’t turned anything up.
The claim that teachers must be allowed to support their union’s support for protected classes of teachers, while at work, is interesting. It may hold up. But this inevitably leads to teachers being allowed to advocate their union’s support for any policy or candidate, including very disruptive matters such as abortion, gun control, etc. Even proselytizing religion would be on the table if a union prioritized the issue. Policy INB would have no traction under this doctrine. What specific legal provisions limit teachers supporting their union’s priorities in the classroom?
ORS 260.432 Solicitation of public employees and Hatch Act are pretty weak, since they deals with petitions, candidates, political committee or ballot measures, but not issues/policies.
The teacher union are collecting ballot signatures inside the schools, passing around a folder to collect signatures. Andrew Gallagher is also the admin of the Recall Brian Shannon PAC. The teacher union makes up most of the membership of the NEEd group and its most active members. Consequently, their political symbols is intertwined with an actual ballot measure. Also the anti racism referendum the school board passed is technically a kind of measure, since schools are quasi-municipal corporations. You can’t use the schools to endorse a fringe political ideology and build curriculum to teach that, which is what they have been doing. Furthermore BLM is a registered political action committee, as are many of the groups that use pride flags as a symbol.
The evidence is explained in the first article, this direct link https://www.yamhilladvocate.com/2021/10/meet-the-newberg-oregon-mafia-led-by-elected-officials-and-other-community-leaders/#Other_Important_NEEd_Members_Include_County_and_State_Officials
Lu Pita is the nickname her mother gave her, it’s mentioned in her bio, which I included in this article. She also gave them back-channel communications about complaints they filed with the Oregon Board of Education as well. I showed all that in the first article.
you’re right, thanks for the link, i had missed that. the articles are very long 🙂 do you add to/edit them after publishing? sometimes they seem to have things i missed on first read, but it could just be because i’m scanning quickly usually. if you do add/edit, i recommend marking those changes clearly and adding the date of the change.
another idea i have is running the social media screenshots through OCR so that they are text searchable in your articles. that can be automated, but it would take some custom code. i think i could get it working in a day or two, but i don’t yet have a good idea for how to actually put the text on the page so it works with the browser’s “find” feature, but will still look like a facebook thread, for example. interesting problem, i’m still thinking…
maybe under each screenshot could be the OCR text, but in a tiny font so small that it just looks like a line. that way, text search on the site, and find on the page, would scan right to the correct screenshot. if it weren’t for wanting “find” to work, the img alt text would be the right place, could put it there too.
It’s not a bad suggestion but the articles are already image intense, and the scripts you’re referring to can lower page load significantly, which harms search rankings.
these would be run once on the server, and the results cached into the page. i don’t know wordpress, but if it has hooks that can be run when the page is edited, it wouldn’t affect the clients/page loads.
“ What specific legal provisions limit teachers supporting their union’s priorities in the classroom?”
I already mentioned this in the article. They are public employees and ALL public employees are limited in what political speech they can engage in on the job. There is no union exemption for ORS 260.432 Solicitation of public employees. You are a public employee before you are a union member.
i submitted a comment that hasn’t been approved yet — that statute and the hatch act don’t prevent public employees expressing opinions on policies and issues, only candidates and ballot measures, etc.
Please only make a comment once and wait for it to be approved.
The teacher union are collecting ballot signatures inside the schools, passing around a folder to collect signatures. Andrew Gallagher is also the admin of the Recall Brian Shannon PAC. The teacher union makes up most of the membership of the NEEd group and its most active members. Consequently, their political symbols is intertwined with an actual ballot measure. Also the anti racism referendum the school board passed is technically a kind of measure, since schools are quasi-municipal corporations. You can’t use the schools to endorse a fringe political ideology and build curriculum to teach that, which is what they have been doing. BLM is also a PAC
there’s just a gap after your reply, but before moderating a relevant comment, where i don’t know whether the comment is rejected or will appear eventually, or that it will be apparent that it is relevant to your reply. not sure of a technical solution, might be best if possible to fully moderate a thread before replying? anyway, there might be arguments on pride/blm, though it’s nowhere near clear cut. but the bigger issue is just whether a teacher should be allowed to advocate their union’s ideology to students, even if it doesn’t relate to petitions, ballot measures, candidates, etc. nothing currently seems to prevent this, even if PACs are involved.