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HONIG APPEAL.JPGThe state Senate will not confirm five people former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed to the State Board of Education, leaving room for Gov. Jerry Brown to appoint seven new people to the board today.

The result is a shake-up on the board that sets policy for the state's public schools, with the loss of members who supported reforms -- such as the "parent trigger" law that allows parents to overhaul low-performing schools -- and the addition of a member from the California Teachers Association, which opposes such changes.

The Senate never confirmed Ted Mitchell, David Lopez , Alan Arkatov , Benjamin Austin and James Fang. The Senate wanted to allow Brown to form his own education team, said Nathan Barankin, spokesman for Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg.

"From our perspective we have a new governor and it's up to the governor to establish his own administration," Barankin said. "That includes selecting the leaders of key policy areas, and that certainly includes education."

Two other board of education members -- Ruth Bloom and Johnathan Williams -- have terms that expire next week.

Brown's appointments include two people who served on the board of education during his first stint as governor as well as a lobbyist for the California Teachers Association.

The appointments, all Democrats, include:

  • Louis "Bill" Honig of Marin (shown above), the president of the Consortium on Reading Excellence. He was the Superintendent of Public Instruction until he was forced to resign in 1993 after being convicted of felony conflict-of-interest charges. Honig was found guilty of authorizing $337,509 in state funds to pay local schools to hire his wife's nonprofit foundation, Quality Education Project, to set up parent involvement programs. The charges were later reduced to misdemeanors. Honig previously served on the state Board of Education under Gov. Brown from 1975 to 1983.
  • Michael Kirst of Palo Alto, a Professor Emeritus at Stanford University and member of the the state Board of Education under Gov. Brown from 1975 to 1982.
  • Aida Molina of Bakersfield, the executive director on academic improvement and accountability for the Bakersfield City School District and a former commissioner with the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. Molina has been a principal in Bakersfield and the Sacramento Unified School District and an assistant principal with the Galt Joint Union Elementary School District.
  • Carl Anthony Cohn of Palm Springs, a professor and the co-director of the Urban Leadership Program at Claremont Graduate University. Cohn previously served as the superintendent of the San Diego Unified School District and the Long Beach Unified School District.
  • James Ramos of San Bernardino, Chairman for the San Manuel Band of Indians and a member of the San Bernardino Community College Board of Trustees.
  • Patricia Ann Rucker of Elk Grove, the legislative advocate for the California Teachers Association. Previously, she was a teacher in the Del Paso Heights School District.
  • Trish Boyd Williams of San Jose, the executive director of EdSource. Previously, Williams worked for the Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Appointments to the state Board of Education require Senate confirmation and are compensated $100 per diem.

PHOTO: Bill Honig in 1996. Rich Pedroncelli/The Associated Press

Editor's note: This post has been changed from earlier versions to reflect that the Senate failed to confirm five board members. Updated at 4:53 p.m., Jan. 5, 2011.


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