Dear Pravda,
You posted today a funny comment on the thread letting us know that the board will discuss budget revisions. (Link #1).
Your very short comment was a nice humoristic  break for me, reminding me  past dialogues with Comrade Stalin. I started to write this blog thinking that it is going to be about past jokes. But then I read my blog addressing Stalin and Anonymous. Not Funny. I am copying this post which was written on Dec. 2013 below (Link #2).
I want to think that reading this post may worth your time as I believe that the current (various) ordeals  come as  no surprise  to  anyone who was following PAUSD during the past  years,.
Trying to maintain some humoristic attitude, I am copying parts of one  dialogue I had with Stalin back on July 2013.  (link #3).
As far as I recall, we knew already about the board’s secret meetings, principals came and left, censorship  was “Force majeure” etc.
      Posted by village fool
a resident of another community
on Jul 26, 2013 at 6:52 pm

@Josef Stalin – I assume you are stunned now that a portion of your posting was removed. Welcome to Palo Alto!


Posted by Josef Stalin
a resident of another community
on Jul 27, 2013 at 2:38 pm

Village Fool — The proper name of the city is the Democratic People’s Republic of Palo Alto, where everyone is a volunteer, and they follow the Juche Idea of self reliance.


Posted by village fool
a resident of another community
on Jul 27, 2013 at 4:14 pm

@Josef Stalin – Thank you, I humbly stand corrected. Thankfully it is easier to deal with a removed post than with getting reeducated.


Posted by village fool
a resident of another community
on Dec 3, 2013 at 8:58 pm

@Josef Stalin – I hope you did not miss the thread your comrade Kim jong-on started today, titled: “Thanks from the DPRK”. Your comrade shared, how shall I put it? his opinion about the editing(?) considerations. Reading the new thread had me recall our dialog, above.
Unfortunately, I can not find now the new thread. Maybe you’ll have better luck? In any case, I have posted it along few other examples of editing(?) here – Web Link

       I’ve read the TERMS OF USE and I believe that I have complied. Let’s see.


Posted by Josef Stalin
a resident of another community
on Dec 5, 2013 at 5:01 pm

Village Fool,

I tried to access the Town Square thread from your blog and obtained the following message: Sorry. The topic you are looking for is no longer in the system.

Nobody posted comments on your blog. Maybe your blog will have responses if the Weekly is willing to sponsor your anonymous blog.

People used to say there is no truth in Izvestia and no news in Pravda.

Now we have five publications we can read: the Comical, the Murky News, the Delay News, the Weakly, and the Daily Compost.

And we invented all of them.



And the truth, Pravda? The kids?
Link #1  –

Link #3 –

@Anonymous and Josef Stalin – the past few days, additional thought about the Oct 8th PAUSD board meeting, and – “He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past.” -George Orwell

First and MOST important – Comrade Stalin, you are the second  addressee only because I decided to list by alphabetical order, not according to any sort of importance. First, I thought to write this note at the bottom; second thought had me realize that sometimes you sent the NKVD first, then clarified. I am clarifying, just to be sure.

The past few days were very “active” PA Online editing/censoring(?) wise.  Obviously, I do not see all.

On Dec. 3  I happened to see a thread  started by ‘Kim Jong-un”  thanking the Weekly for censoring. The thread disappeared; I posted it in the  page I dedicated to Before& After.  (link #1).  “Kim Jong Un”‘s  style reminded me of a dialog I had with “Josef Stalin” back in the summer.  That dialog happened to be on a thread that dealt with Buena Vista mobile home park (link #2).  That thread was was “silent” since August. I decided to try to address “Stalin” thinking that although it is a side note, the thread itself dealt with an issue that called for some attention after the past elections (Measure D). Nicely, those who know better than me stepped in. Stalin responded in a way that I was sure would be cut – spelling names of local publications in an insulting way. Stalin’s comment remained untouched. Maybe the moderators are also minding the NKVD, the way I did above?

On Dec. 5, , Anonymous addressed me, started a thread titled: A plea to village fool (link #3). Anonymous wrote:

Village Fool, Palo Alto Weekly is now accepting anonymous bloggers. Web Link
I have closely followed your crusade against the draconian censoring on this site. To the point of creating and monitoring your own blog. I feel this is an important area for discussion within the community about the power of censorship in shaping an biasing the discussion on Palo Alto issues.
At the very least, posting your correspondence with the Weekly would provide very interesting reading if they were to refuse you.

I must admit it was a pleasant surprise. I do not know who wrote this thread. It was restricted to those who log in when I saw it. That is a clear indication to me  that this issue is not of interest to the moderators.  I responded. Later, I decided to add another comment. That comment disappeared completely. I decided to try the comment again, rephrased.  That comment disappeared as well. I posted both comments in link #1.

I agree with Anonymous that censoring  is “an important area for discussion within the community about the power of censorship in shaping an biasing the discussion on Palo Alto issues.” This is a part of the reasons that I went this way.

“Village Idiot” tried to have this discussion (link #4). The editor actually responded there, but  “Village idiot”‘s thread was restricted. The discussion is gone. The Editing/censoring(?) is alive and kicking, impacting the future, and reflecting the present.

One of my removed comments, responding to “Anonymous Plea”  included Ms Mendoza’s quote which  I picked from her response to my open letter after the Oct 8th board meeting.  (link #5).

Ms. Mendoza commented – ““This is the way they work. If they do not talk about it, maybe people will think that the problem does not exist.”.

I have posted my thoughts related to this quote here (link #6).

I want to add now an additional bit-regarding that Oct 8th board meeting and the way the PA online reported about it. I asked before why the thread where “let’s cheer” reported his/her impressions from the meeting was locked, completely (link #7). “Let’s cheer” noted:  “… and the only truth-teller in the crowd, Marielena Gaona, reminded the board that a student died from bullying at Terman and also that her “little angel” had to be repeatedly hit in order for the district to talk about bullying and special ed. None of the principals are smiling like they were before. Nor should they.”

I did not comment before about how astonished I was that the fact that Ms. Mendoza spoke up was not mentioned in the article covering this meeting (link #8). The three min. available for community members who want to address the board were used by two parents.  One was mentioned, Ms. Mendoza was not.  The fact that Ms. Mendoza’s address was not mentioned in the Weekly report was the “last straw” that had me publish my open letter.

I think that this goes back to  “Anonymous” who nicely stated that those occurrences were ” shaping an biasing the discussion on Palo Alto issues.”

The fact that on Oct 8Th  PAUSD was under CDE investigation, which was NOT mentioned during the board meeting, is just the Cherry on Top of all this.

Who knows what other Cherries are hiding.



Link #1:

Link #2:

Link #3:

Link #4:

Link #5:

Link #6:

Link #7:

Link #8:


I posted the following on March, 2014:

@Edmund Burke –
Thank you, again, for the  incredible analysis of the various versions and updates of PAUSD bullying policies and proposals. Obviously, you put a lot of time and thought into educating us in a clear,  caring and eye-level way.
Having written the above about your analysis, I listed the reasons that had me conclude that, unfortunately, you were wasting your time.  I listed my reasons on your blog (link #1), and on my blog (link #2).
I do not know what the current state of the PAUSD Bullying Policies is.
Thinking about the Hippocratic Oath that medical doctors take, I wondered if there was something similar for educators.  I found the California Teacher Association Code of Ethics (link #3). Within this, I believe we have the fundamental basis for bullying polices and best practices.
“The educator, believing in the worth and dignity of each human being, recognizes the supreme importance of the pursuit of truth, devotion to excellence, and the nurture of democratic principles. Essential to these goals is the protection of freedom to learn and to teach and the guarantee of equal educational opportunity for all. The educator accepts the responsibility to adhere to the highest ethical standards. The educator recognizes the magnitude of the responsibility inherent in the teaching process….”
It seems to me that this code says it all. Covers it all.
I think it would make sense to expect all school and district officials and PAUSD board members to conform to this code.
What say you?
While I do realize that this ethical code may not  be  sufficient, legally,  I am  very curious to know your insight as to where, if at all, any of the code of ethics was violated in the cases the OCR checked (the cases that have been made available to the public).
I want to think that all would support conforming to this code. Back to basics. It seems to me that there are numerous simple ways to deal with any noncompliance.


Dear Mr. Dauber,

I have posted the following twice before. I hope you will consider my appeal. Maybe share with like minded board members? The more the merrier?
Here is what I posted on May, 2015 and on March 2016:
Dear Mr. Dauber,

Yes, me, again.

I have addressed you several times before trying to convince you remain an outsider and to act from the outside.  This is also an attempt to find a way to create some Checks & Balances, thus my repeated suggestion to form a Shadow PAUSD Board.

I stand corrected about your running for the school board – I think that your winning last election was very important. Your winning proved that the public mindset may have shifted a bit.  And, a personal proof point – while you were marginalized before, you were correct in your assertions.  And not a word now about the dirty tricks used trying to stop you.

At this point I think it has become quite clear that the district’s systemic issues cannot be addressed singularly, one by one.  Best practices will not emerge from addressing the issues this way.  Randomly, almost.

MLK’s urgency in his speech “Why We Can’t Wait” is relevant in so many ways.  I think that some form of a Shadow PAUSD board makes so much sense now, especially given the broken trust and fear of retaliation.  And, who knows?  Maybe you’ll initiate momentum for creating some mechanism of Check & Balances over various local governments?

Please resign!  You can be much more impactful working outside of the board!  I believe that you may have gained some insights as to how things really work. Sadly, Aristophanes is as relevant today as he was many years back.  We need your leadership, outside of the board.

This boat needs to be rocked. Stables need to be cleaned. Please educate the community about the way things work, loudly and clearly.  So much work needs to be done, so much light needs to be shed on the district’s issues.
Time is of the essence.  The kids cannot wait.
I hope you will consider my appeal.
village fool
Dear Ms. Gaona Mendoza,
First I want to congratulate you again, for being elected to the EPA school board! And to express my admiration for your brave voice and ongoing acts!
I hope that your child is doing better.
I wrote to you more than three years ago. I am copying my first open letter below.
A lot has happened since I first wrote to you.  I have addressed you quite a few times on this blog since then.  And you kindly responded to a few of my posts (the posts can be found using the search box on the right, above).
I wrote to you after the Oct 8, 2013 board meeting. Watching you (link #1, below) triggered my first open address. I was appalled. That 10/8/13  board meeting started with a celebration of unity, continued with reporting that Special Ed was 100% successful in implementing inclusion. .  As it turned out, not all was as rosy as presented in that meeting. The fact that PAUSD was under  California Department of Education (CDE)  investigation was not mentioned during that meeting, the recent Office of Civil Rights (OCR) resolution is the last of many occurrences proving that not all was perfect.
I watched you recently acknowledging a change and I wondered –
Did anyone except for Mr. Dauber apologize to you?  (While I feel Mr. Dauber’s recent apology was a gentleman’s act, he caused no harm, since he was not on the board at the time).
I am asking about a genuine apology from those who should have learned given all that went wrong, given all the resolutions, I am asking also since I mentioned the Civil Liberty Act of 1988 where acknowledgment and apology were defined as the the first steps, prerequisites to real correction.
Did any of those who actually wronged your child and you apologize?
Another question: The recent OCR resolution called for independent investigation. As it turns out, PAUSD will employ the investigator. Do you think that anyone paid by PAUSD can be independent?
I will not be able list all of my questions and thoughts here. More to come.
Yours, respectfully, with the greatest gratitude
Village Fool
And a few related thoughts and questions:
1. Independent investigation: this issue was discussed many times. I raised the clear need in my open address to Mr. Dauber on March 2013, asking him to form a shadow board. There was an online discussion about an ombudsman. I still think that any investigation needs to be done by an outside entity. I cannot see how a conflict of interest can be avoided here.
2. How come PAUSD went from 100% success to committees, investigations etc.? Can any institution this large credibly claim 100% success?
3. Are there any safe places or platforms to raise concerns without risking retaliation?
My first open address:

Open address to Ms. Mendoza, the Lady who addressed PAUSD board on 10/8/13, and few related thoughts —

Dear Ms. Mendoza,

I am writing to express my admiration, respect, gratitude and shame.

I will start with the shame – I was embarrassed to watch (link #1) the lack of empathy, lack of respect and the lack of gratitude – all these were totally due when you stood to speak up after the presentation about the “new vision” in special education.

The board and audience all should have applauded – you brought the change. None of the new declarations would have been offered without your courageous actions.

I truly hope your child is doing better. I think you know more than others why anyone who has high stakes in PAUSD will not come forward. Retaliation was mentioned so many times.

I hope the day will come when you will stand in front of PAUSD offices and the grateful, respectful, admiring people of Palo Alto, free from fear of retaliation, will stand in line to shake your hand – all in broad day light. I know I will be there.

Yours, respectfully,

village fool


And few related thoughts/questions –
1. I do not know who actually came forward to the Weekly with the information about the OCR settlement.
In any case – I am very thankful to the family who came forward. I noted that many times before.

2. I called many times, as have many others, for an independent investigation. We are still waiting for this, and still believe it is needed…
I think that the Civil Liberties Act of 1988 (link #2) beautifully defines the logic behind attempting to correct wrongs. It seems to me this logic is especially compelling here, since it is about an education system. The preliminary steps, before any change is possible were defined as: 1. Acknowledge. 2. Apologize. 3. Educate. Unfortunately, it seems that PAUSD is in the pre-Acknowledge step. My address to Ms. Mendoza above was triggered by the board’s reaction to her on Tuesday evening, clearly showing their lack of acknowledgement.

3. Who do the board members represent? On 5/24/2013 (link #3) I wrote: ” …..The latest info as to the closed board sessions dealing with litigation had me wonder – Who are the board member serving? Info about the first OCR case revealed that the parents tried to contact the board members, seeking help. Seems that a closed session could be about a case where board members were contacted by community parents who ended addressing the OCR. I am wondering, simply – on what side are the board members? Closed session makes it clear that the board sides with the district officials – anyways, always. Should concerned parents try to contact the board members regarding concerns they have, knowing that the board always sides with the district officials? Conflict of interest?”

Link #1 – – Ms. Mendoza’: 1:46 hours
Link #2 –
Link #3 –

Many  questions to follow.

Here is my post from May 2014. Please scroll down, a bit.

Blog Housekeeping, and – “A new broom sweeps clean, but the old broom knows the corners”

Blog Housekeeping –
This note is heads up  for those who signed up for email delivering of my postings  – Thank you!!!!

I have listed many times my thoughts about the ongoing censoring on PAOnline, which is “… an important area for discussion within the community about the power of censorship in shaping andbiasing the discussion on Palo Alto issues….”  – Anonymous (link #1).  I related more to this issue here (link #2), among many other places, and obviously on the page I dedicated to “Before and After” censoring/editing.

I am planning to comment here, posting, instead of using the “Ongoing” page  which I initially  dedicated to this purpose.  This may result in more frequent postings (depending on the events) – I wanted to give you a fair notice. I’ll try and see.
And –
Here are some thoughts related to recent news and comments posted both on the thread letting us know of the new Gunn principal (link #3), and the thread that listed a letter to the editor about the recent news as to Palo Alto high. (link #4):
The news of the new Gunn principal had me think of the broom quote I listed on the title. Without getting into any specific details regarding the new principal  (who I obviously do not know), having a new broom may totally make sense when a serious cleanup is called for.  A “new broom” can bring new fresh perspectives, free of the local habits formed over many years and taken for granted.
Many have called for an independent investigation into PAUSD practices. Such an investigation seems less likely than ever.  My estimation of the magnitude of the cleanup called for caused me to address Mr. Dauber more than a year ago, calling on him to form a Shadow PAUSD Board (Link #5), and ask him, again, on December 2013 to reconsider my suggestion (my blog – link #6.1, Palo Alto online – Link #6.2)
My perspective of the magnitude of the work called for to cleanup reminds me of Hercules, thinking of his choice as to the best method to clean the stables. Nobody wants to go the way Hercules went, or to throw out the baby with the bath water.
 I am still convinced that the bigger picture calls for a serious investigation of past events.  I suggested that the past decade be reviewed in my “objectives” for the PAUSD Shadow Board since I am convinced that some patterns were established well before the last Superintendent and all need to be identified.
The letter to the editor titled “Modeling Bad Behavior” (listed  in Link #4) caused me to think of the second part of the broom quote which I listed in the title. This letter deals with the story about the ex-principal of Palo Alto High.  (I did relate to teachers’ personal modeling in another post relating to the thread that brought us the news about PAUSD Board’s  secret meeting – link #7).

When the new principal of Palo Alto high was announced last year, the Weekly published an article titled:

“New Paly Principal Knows Her Way Around Campus” (link #8).  Again – the second part of the broom quote comes to mind.

The following is a partial list of questions I asked myself, particularly in light of the recently published allegations around the prior principal’s actions and his subsequent demotion.  I do hope that these questions were properly considered:

1.  Was Ms. Diorio aware of the sexual harassment allegations that were investigated by PAUSD officials before those became a cause for PAUSD official’s  investigation?

1.1 – If Ms. Diorio was aware of the allegations:
1.1.1  Where did she take the info?
1.1.2 – If she was aware, and did not forward the info, why didn’t she? (Was it because she was afraid of retaliation?)

1.2 If Ms. Diorio was not aware of the allegations –

1.2.1 Was she approachable to the woman who felt harassed?
1.2.2 How come she was not aware?
2. Streaking, campus culture etc. sampling –
2.1 Did Ms. Diorio think that a clothes-optional school is a blessing to this community?
2.2 If she did not approve of the streaking occurrences, where did she take her concerns before she was promoted? What did she do about her concerns?

Basically, if any of the allegations published about the prior principal are correct, did Ms. Diorio roam around campus with her eyes/ears/mouth closed?  And if so, why?

A week ago (2/28/17) I posted a partial description  of the circumstances that led to the complete closure of the  thread dealing with PAUSD secret meetings (link #1). I noted many times that I thought the info was super important, I could not underhand the rationale behind the heavy censorship, the way the discussion was stiffed.
Here are couple of examples of my  comments which were removed completely. I still cannot underhand why. Please note  “never been more disgusted” and  “Teachers too” comments, to which i related below. Seems to me that their comments are still very relevant.

Before- posted on 01/02/2014

Posted by village fool, a resident of another community
0 minutes ago
village fool is a registered user.
@Never been more disgusted – Back in July you wrote:
“…Or maybe I will continue to teach my students that their democratic duty is to criticize their elected and paid leaders to ensure that they are representing us. My union president may be silent right now, but I will not be.”
I wished you, then, that you voice will be heard. I decided, then, to try to follow up with you.
I want to think that you also teach the virtues of free speech, First Amendment etc.

“teachers too” ended her/his comment here ( Web Link) saying: “… they are the people we pay to care for our kids, and they are all part of the problem. Until they recognize that and stop playing the game of silence, then only then will we be on the way to improvement.”

All correlates nicely to your July’s comment, above.

Wishing you that your voice will be heard and inspire your students. Many agree that teachers’ personal modeling can go a long way.
Happy New year!

(this is part of a longer post in my blog – Web Link)


Comment removed, completely.


Before – posted 12/15/2013:

Posted by village fool, a resident of another community
0 minutes ago

village fool is a registered user.

@Never been so disgusted – Back in July I decided to try and follow up with you. I posted here, yesterday, Saturday 12/14/12.
My sincere efforts to conform to the Terms of Use did not help me, and my comment disappeared completely. It can be found on my blog where I have posted samples of editing/censoring (Web Link)

Happy Holidays and Break! (I hope my holiday greetings will remain untouched)


Post gone, completely.



The following comment was posted, and disappeared on Saturday, 12/14/13

Posted by village fool, a resident of another community
1 hour ago

village fool is a registered user.

@Never been more disgusted – back in July you wrote – “…Or maybe I will continue to teach my students that their democratic duty is to criticize their elected and paid leaders to ensure that they are representing us. My union president may be silent right now, but I will not be.”
I wished you, then, that your voice would be heard.

Back in July I decided to try and follow up with you. I am writing to wish you a great Holiday and break!

I do hope that you are also teaching the virtues of free speech. I wonder if teaching the virtues of free speech include any type of personal modeling?
Back in July I could not have foreseen my comments being removed the way they have been now. I am aware that this thread was restricted only to those who log in. I am sorry about that, apparently this is a one way communication. I could suggest an alternative, but I think that having mentioned an alternative is one of the reasons that had my comments have disappeared completely, so I’ll refrain from mentioning alternatives.

I am copying “Teachers too”s comment (which was posted here: Web Link). This comment articulates parts of the thoughts I was having back in July. I am hoping that copying a comment which was not edited will help me in my sincere effort to conform here and have this comment remained untouched.

“Teachers too” wrote: “The school board is responsible for approving policy and directing the superintendent, currently Kevin Skelly, and they have been woefully incapable of these basic responsibilities. Increasingly absent are defensive excuses in this forum about how they are volunteers, good-people, and other emptiness designed to divert attention from how harmful the school board and Kevin Skelly have been to the PAUSD brand. Teachers are perhaps the biggest part of this particular thread. They are the most important adult at school in a student’s life and they have the most contact time with the student, and that includes the supervision and monitoring for the student’s well-being. In some of these bullying cases, the teacher has been accused, just like the principal, of failing to protect the student from bullying. In short, bullying has everything to do about teachers. It’s quite basic. Union folks have been eerily quiet about this whole mess. I think part is explained by a deal to remain quiet and collect raises, you know, don’t rock the boat and you’ll get what you want. I think the other part is that the union doesn’t know what to do, judging by the past few years of watching former PAEA president Triona Gogarty and current president Teri Baldwin publicly represent teachers at PAUSD board meetings, focusing of pay raises and nothing else. PAEA is one of the most powerful forces in PAUSD, nothing gets done without Skelly first asking for approval, and that includes anti-bullying policy. You would think that paying all these people more would result in the resolution of PAUSD problems, but it has had the opposite effect. Will the board’s 5-0 vote in 12 hours make Skelly a better leader? Well, did the 5-0 votes last month and in the spring to give raises to the teachers and principals make them better at what they do? They are all part of the organization, they are the people we pay to care for our kids, and they are all part of the problem. Until they recognize that and stop playing the game of silence, then only then will we be on the way to improvement. ”

Let me copy, again, the last sentence of “Teachers too”s comment – “… they are the people we pay to care for our kids, and they are all part of the problem. Until they recognize that and stop playing the game of silence, then only then will we be on the way to improvement. ”
This goes back to my points about modeling the virtues of free speech and exercising academic freedom.

Wishing you, again, great Holiday!


Comment gone.  Completely.



Link#1 –

On July 2013 The PA Weekly published a thread titled:  In secret, school board weighs not cooperating with federal agency (link #1).
As it turns out  those discussions surfaced again,  rescind or not? etc.
I thought then that the info was ultra important and that the censoring silenced a very important discussion. Many comments vanished. The thread was made available  only to those who login very short time after I posted the question: 

Posted by village fool, a resident of another community

on Jul 15, 2013 at 5:47 am

I am confused – is it certain that the recent agreements with the OCR will be followed?

Making a thread available only to those who login proved to stifle the discussion. This thread took many twists, other threads relating to this issue popped up in an attempt to continue this discussion without logging in  (so I believe). This thread was a personal straw for me: the  combination of the importance the issue discussed and the censorship stifling the discussion was the  reason I decided to start a blog, a place where I cannot be deleted. I continued to try to point to the importance of those secret meetings. Most of my comments vanished, samples can be found of the page I dedicated to the ongoing censoring (link #3). The thread was locked completely after the editorial addressing the “Cut the Mike night” – Nadir.. Here are the comments leading to the secret meetings thread being locked completely (link #2):

Posted by yes, but, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood

on Feb 4, 2014 at 9:16 am

Town Square Moderator,

There is a separate thread which Village Fool keeps resuscitating which I believe is a method to ignite controversy surrounding similar issues. It’s among your top posts of the day. If people click, it just gets more views, usually few people have commented since the original thread was started.

I have appreciated your delivering news on the topics regardless of controversy; however, when posters use a thread to ignite passions towards one view or another, that seems unnecessary. Astroturf movements on Town Square should at least have real people behind them.

Palo Alto Online Moderator Response:

Thanks for pointing this out. We’ve closed that topic from further comment so this won’t happen any longer.

Discussion gone with the locking of this thread, until pretty recently. Rescind? Why? etc.

The above is a very partial tale. More censored comments  can be found a on the page I dedicated to the ongoing censoring. (link #3). 
And – 
Dear Ms. Gaona Mendoza- Congrats!  Another open letter is on the works. More than three years ago  I addressed you first time (link #4), I have written to you quite a few times since.  Thank you for your thoughtful responses and for all you do!
Link #1 –
Link #3 –
Link #4-