Thousands of Temecula residents to vote on recall of controversial school board president

Rob McMillan Image
Tuesday, June 4, 2024
Temecula residents to vote on recall of school board president
Voters in Temecula will head to the polls to decide whether to recall school board president Dr. Joseph Komrosky.

Thousands of voters on Tuesday will decide whether the controversial president of the Temecula Valley Unified School District's Board of Education will keep his job.

Parents, teachers and other supporters of the recall, which would remove board President Dr. Joseph Komrosky from his position, have held several rallies around Temecula over the past several weeks.

"We're seeing a very divisive position being taken by the folks who should be trying to unify the community," said Derek Heid, who is a teacher and parent in the district.

"The school board positions should be non-partisan. We should be able to look at the dais and say these are five people who are interested first and foremost in the equitable education of our students."

Supporters of the recall point to several controversial votes by three members of the board who were elected into office in 2022, including a resolution that prohibited the teaching of so-called critical race theory, a resolution that prohibited the display of flags on campus other than the state or U.S. flag, and a policy that requires school staff to notify parents about transgender students.

"They're villainizing teachers," said recall supporter Kriti McClure. "They're ruling by fear, they're making up problems that don't exist and then solving them to pretend like they're some hero, and they're just creating division."

But Komrosky does have wide support throughout the community from people in favor of policies he's helped implement.

"I'm not comfortable with my kids talking about sex, or gender ideology or anything like that in an elementary school setting," said one parent at a controversial board meeting held last summer as the board was scheduled to vote on whether to approve a curriculum that included discussion about Harvey Milk, the first openly gay man to be elected to public office in California.

Komrosky posted a video online earlier this year, urging voters to support him and vote no during the special election.

"Vote no on this asinine recall," said Komrosky in the video posted online. "I will rigorously seek out and stand against any evils, such as pervasive profanity, obscenity, vulgarit, pornography and erotica here at (the Temecula Valley Unified School District)."

"Our schools, teachers unions, county, state and country do not own your kids. You do!"

Only voters in the district which Komrosky represents are eligible to vote in the recall election.