Coastal Post Online

May 2001

Bye, Bye at Tomales High

By Judy Borello

By the time you read this, this petition will be in the hands of the superintendent of Shoreline Unified School District, the School Board of Shoreline, and possibly the Independent Journal and the Press Democrat.

The petition reads:

Attention Mr. Rosenthal,

We the undersigned parents, alumni, area citizens, and taxpayers of the Shoreline Unified School District, do hereby request the School Board and its Superintendent to ask for the resignation of Mr. Terry Hughey, Principal of Tomales High School, based on the following points:

For the past two years, Mr. Hughey has ignored the needs of the school and its students while pursuing his agenda of removing the school mascot even before receiving support from the students or the board. Most of his actions were done quietly, behind the scene.

Mr. Hughey ordered the removal and destruction of historic photographs of school sports teams. Destruction of public property is a felony.

Mr. Hughey removed the Braves mascot from awards and certificates, again without consulting the School Board or Booster's Club.

Mr. Hughey didn't inform the Booster's Club of his agenda to ask the School Board to nix the Braves mascot at the Booster's meeting a few days before the first Board meeting where the mascot was voted out.

Mr. Hughey changed order s for football equipment removing the Braves image from the order forms and then told the team that it was a company mistake.

Mr. Hughey did not even consult our local Coast Miwok who live in our district and support our schools about their feelings on the mascot. He relied on outside groups for his information.

It is our belief that the continued employment of Mr. Terry Hughey in the position of principal of Tomales High School will be detrimental to our community and its children. Our students deserve a caring personal and professional principal who listens to their needs and that of the community.

This petition was signed by a mass number of people in our community who agreed with what this letter of protest conveyed.

The most important issue is that while Mr. Hughey stirred up all this brouhaha, the education at Tomales High has gone from bad to worse and the spirit of the students has been undermined. Take, for instance, the students' protest in which 200 students and some parents rallied in front of Tomales High a few months ago. Mr. Hughey turned a deaf ear to them and threatened punishment, instead of respecting their valid position.

This whole thing could have been avoided by Mr. Hughey if he were to put his energy into educating the students scholastically and concentrate on bringing Tomales High out of roc bottom in the County for education, especially when the teacher to student ratio is much better than in schools like Sir Francis Drake High or Tamalpais High where the student body numbers at least five times that of the 275 students at Tomales High.

In Coach Feliciano's letter to the Point Reyes Light dated April 19, he stated that "during staff meetings, Mr. Hughey constantly makes sure that all teachers enforce a positive environment."

Gee, that's great, Mr. Feliciano, because Mr. Hughey is surely setting the tone for a positive environment for Tomales High. The students are protesting, the alumni are pissed, the parents are unhappy, and the taxpayers for Shoreline Unified School District are miserable and complaining about paying the salaries when all they're getting for their money are disgruntled students who are not receiving a very good education, teachers who aren't getting the job done, and a principal and superintendent who only seem to care about pumping indoctrination about racism and hate.

All Mr. Hughey is doing is causing a negative environment and literally giving the middle finger salute to the community which he is paid to serve.

I rest my case on this subject.


There are many complaints from the good citizens of West Marin that they are not allowed a place in the National or State Park to take their dogs for a romp. I would think that with close to 80,000 acres of land, the Park Service could set aside an area for just that. It's a shame to live out here in the country, surrounded by a vast amount of natural beauty, and not be allowed to take a stroll with your best buddy (pooch) off-leash. There should be designated areas to do this; after all, we are taxpayers, too! I've heard that at Millerton State Park there is a sign saying "No Dogs." What about leashed dogs?

Use some common sense: dogs shouldn't run free near ranches because they disturb the ranch animals and sometimes even kill them, nor in real sensitive wild life habitats for the same reason, but surely in thousands of acres in park and beaches there could be a few designated areas for unleashed dogs to romp and stretch their legs and work up their cardiovascular just like us.

PS Well, I guess Big Brother is here in 2001 instead of 1984 and I'm certainly not happy with it and many of you aren't either! Protest, write and vocalize your opinions on subjects that disturb you, after all, it's your community!

By the way, I would like to commend Coach Feliciano for having the integrity to try to retrieve some of the pictures that were being garbaged at Tomales High.

It's a real shame when a principal espouses a supposed "positive environment," and then deceitfully abuses his power by his acts of desecration disrespect and discrimination toward the Braves.

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