LANCASTER — The Antelope Valley Union High School District will not have representation with California Interscholastic Federation’s Southern Section leagues for the 2020-21 school year after the district’s Board of Education failed to approve district representatives Thursday night.
Board Clerk Jill McGrady and trustee John Rush voted to approve the representatives from each of the District’s eight comprehensive schools. But the vote failed when member Victoria Ruffin abstained. Ruffin did not give a reason.
Board member Amanda Parrell did not attend Thursday’s meeting. The five-member Board is short one member after the Nov. 4 resignation of former member Robert “Bob” Davis.
The proposed representatives are the athletic directors from Antelope Valley, Eastside, Highland, Knight, Lancaster, Littlerock, Palmdale and Quartz Hill high schools.
McGrady asked about the repercussions for District sports by not passing the item.
“It affects our ability to have input into the CIF section that we’re in and be part of those discussions,” Assistant Superintendent Brett Neal said.
McGrady asked Ruffin if she needed more information to make a decision.
“I don’t think I have to give a reason why I’m abstaining,” Ruffin said.
Ruffin suggested the Board table the item to bring it back when Parrell could vote on it. That led to a brief discussion on how to bring the item back to the next Board meeting.
Attorney Jay Fernow said McGrady, as presiding officer, can put the item on the Board’s next agenda.
But that might be too late. According to the CIF form, the list of names is due to the CIF Southern Section Office by June 28.
Ruffin also voted against a provisional internship permit for Anthony Hunt, a pupil services technician at Palmdale High School who is working toward his teaching credential
McGrady and Rush voted to approve the provisional internship permit, or PIP. However, the permit needed three votes to pass. The PIP would have allowed Hunt to teach special education for the 2020-21 school year.
Ruffin did not give a reason for denying Hunt, who supported last year’s unsuccessful recall effort against Ruffin, Parrell and Davis. Hunt also addressed the Board multiple times last year following controversial decisions made by the former Board majority.
Ruffin’s vote against Hunt came after she voted to approve five short-term staff permits and three other provisional internship permits.
McGrady addressed Ruffin’s action during Board comments.
“Dr. Ruffin, tonight, you blocked an employee of the Antelope Valley Union High School District from becoming a teacher,” McGrady said. “He has proven himself over the years to be an excellent employee. He has worked at night, he has gone to school, he’s working on completing his degree. The PIP would have allowed him to work with the children who need him in the classroom.
“He will be a wonderful teacher, and he’s wonderful with our kids. I’ve seen him with our kids; he’s wonderful. I am proud to call him my friend. He happens to be an African-American. And Dr. Ruffin, you just blocked him from moving in to the teaching force. Shame on you.”