Reedley Exponent 2-1-18 E-edition
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RHS wrestlers down Orange Cove in ‘Manning Melee’
Reedley (Fresno County) CA 93654 | 50 cents Two RC coaches part of lawsuit against SCCCD
City’s annual Family Dance lights up Community Center
Action alleges gender
discrimination against
female coaches, athletes
By Jon Earnest
Two Reedley College coaches are among three women suing the State Center Commu- nity College District alleging gender discrimi- nation against female coaches and athletes at Reedley College and Fresno City College.
Lawyers for RC softball coach Kathy Kub- all, RC volleyball coach Shannon Jefferies and FCC softball coach Rhonda Williams filed the
By Jon Earnest
Community leaders and the city of Reedley on Jan. 23 paid tribute to John Swenning, who served as Restorative Justice program direc- tor for the Reedley Peace Building Initiative.
Vol. 129, No. 5 | Thursday, February 1, 2018
Swenning — who was director of the city’s restorative justice pro- gram for nearly
seven years be-
fore leaving the
end of 2017 — was
presented with
a plaque by the
Reedley Police
Department and
received many
messages of ap-
preciation from
community lead-
ers during the Jan. 23 Reedley City Council meeting.
Swenning, now working at Fres- no Pacific University as the program director overseeing restorative jus- tice work in the Fresno area, was part of the team that in the past six years built Reedley’s reputation as a leader in restorative justice. He worked closely with Police Chief Joe Garza and police Lt. Marc Ediger to make the city’s program a model for others to follow.
“Like Chief was saying, it takes a community — it takes all of us,” Swenning said when called to speak. “That’s the most amazing thing about RPBI and restorative justice. It’s not one person and it’s not 10. It’s an en- tire community working and coming together.”
Swenning said the success of Reedley’s restorative justice pro- gram is about the community part- nerships and wanting to do good for others.
“It’s all about loving each other and service, and what we can do for each other,” he said. “It’s pretty simple and pretty basic. It’s good and biblical and right.”
See SWENNING on page A2
John Swenning
lawsuit Jan. 16 in Fresno County Superior Court. The suit seeks unspecified gen- eral and special damages according to proof, as well as attorney fees and court costs.
The lawsuit claims the
district violated the Califor-
nia Fair Employment and
Housing Act and federal
Title IX laws. The FEHA
prohibits discrimination against employees based on sex or gender while Title IX prohibits employer discrimination on the basis of sex at educational institutions receiving federal as- sistance.
Sandra Caldwell, Reed- ley College president, said in a Jan. 25 prepared state- ment: “The district is aware of the recently filed lawsuit. Although we can’t comment on pending litigation, I can state the State Center Com- munity College District is committed to gender equity and abiding by the law.”
In separate emails to The Exponent, Kub- all and Jefferies declined comment on the case, referring to their attorneys.
In a Jan. 24 news release, attorneys Warren Paboojian and Todd Barsotti said they filed the
lawsuit to bring what they called the district’s unfair labor practices in line with existing laws. “Despite the existence of Title IX for more than 45 years, and California laws prohibiting gender discrimination, State Center Community College District continues to engage in conduct which discriminates against female coaches who coach female athletes,” the release stated. The attorneys said the decision to sue
SCCCD was not taken lightly.
“It is unfortunate that litigation is neces-
sary simply to cause an employer to follow laws which have been in place for decades,” the release stated.
Kuball — who has been with Reedley Col-
See LAWSUIT on page A2
Kathy Kuball
Shannon Jefferies
Intense fire torches big rig
RHS to compete at Fresno County Academic Decathlon
By Jon Earnest
Reedley High School takes a younger, less experienced team into this weekend’s Fresno County Academic Decathlon competition in Fresno. But it’s a team that has a small core of experienced leaders excited to share what they’ve learned about this year’s topic – Africa.
The annual testing and Super Quiz competition takes place Satur- day, Feb. 3, at Central High School’s East Campus.
“Last year was a really strong year for us,” said Emily Booth, a ju- nior who is in her third year with the program. “We had a lot of improve- ment, so we’re hoping to build on that.”
Amber Hunt, team adviser and
the school’s foreign department chair- person, admits that she’s a bit nervous because so many seniors from last year’s team graduated. In a Super Quiz competition based on World War II, the 2017 squad turned in an impressive performance by improv- ing its score by 21 percent from 2016. Reedley High placed ninth out of 25 schools and earned the team Most Im- proved honors.
“Our team for the majority is younger,” Hunt said. “But they are learning, and they are going to see the process. I think we’re going to do well.”
Booth captured three medals last year. She won a gold medal in Music, silver in Science, and bronze in Inter- view. She is looking forward to the challenge of sharing information on Africa in a competitive setting.
“I think Africa this year really is a good topic,” Both said. “The cultur- al aspect of it and then its application to the modern day issues is interest- ing. A lot of our sections came up to the present day. Even our science section addressed modern issues.”
Ethan Lloyd also is a junior and third-year program participant.
Jon Earnest / The Exponent
Reedley High School’s Super Quiz team is pictured with alternates. In the front row (from left) is Justin Soun, Alexandria Moncada, Jenelle Jaramillo and Anahi Jaramillo (green jacket). In the back row are Emily Booth, Luz Lemus, Stephanie Calvillo, Yes- sima Silva, Citlali Vargas, Ethan Lloyd and Hope Duarte.
ABOVE: On Jan. 27, Reedley police officers block off Buttonwil- low Avenue as Reedley firefighters prepare to battle flames af- ter a truck and trailer big rig caught fire just south of Manning Avenue. First responders found the truck — parked on the east sideofthestreet—fullyengulfed inflamesshortlyafter9:45 a.m. Three units from the Reedley Fire Department and Cal Fire extinguished the blaze, which destroyed the trailer along with a number of large plastic bins designed to carry fruit. The California Highway Patrol and Fresno County Sheriff’s Office also responded to the call. Sheriff’s deputies investigated the scene for arson, but couldn’t confirm the cause of the fire as of Jan. 30.
LEFT: Reedley Fire Department’s Engine 331 sprays water on flames. Dark smoke from the intense flames was noticeable from all areas of the city.
Graeme Gerster / Photos Contributed
When: Saturday, Feb. 3, testing starts at 9:30 a.m. and the Super Quiz at 3:30 p.m.
Where: Central High School East Campus, 3535 N. Cornelia Ave., Fresno.
Classified - B5-6 Directory - A5 Legals - B7 Sports - B3-4
See ACADEMIC on page A8
Health & Fitness - A6-7 Lights & Sirens - A3 Obituaries - A2-3 Opinion - A4

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