FAIRFIELD — Adoption of textbooks costing $253,473 won approval Thursday by Fairfield-Suisun School District trustees who were told a two-week delay could leave students without the books when schools reopen.
Sheila McCabe, director of secondary education for Fairfield-Suisun, said she didn’t know if a delay to the next school board meeting would allow publishers to get books to the school district in time.
English textbooks that meet Common Core standards and costing $229,889 for three high school grades are among the materials.
David Isom, president of the board of trustees, had asked about continuing the matter to the next school board meeting.
“I’m interested in giving the public more time,” he said.
A member of the public had told trustees she was unaware the textbooks were available for review and Trustee Pat Shamansky asked about a two-week delay to give the public another opportunity to look at the textbooks.
Wendy Purvis had told trustees she receives a lot of automated calls from the school district about school photos and other matters but never heard that textbooks could be reviewed. No mention was made on the school district website or Facebook page, she said.
“This event went completely under my radar,” Purvis said.
Textbooks were available for public review at the school district offices in the Instructional Media Center from May 22 through Thursday. No one from the public had looked at the books as of Wednesday.
Shamansky said it was difficult to find the media center on the second floor and asked if the books could be made available to the public in the lobby.
Isom said before the board vote to adopt the textbooks that problems with informing the public about the textbooks provide a lesson in communication.
“It is important,” he said, “that we use this as an opportunity to get better.”
Trustee Dave Gaut agreed.
“We have to change this,” he said of how the textbook review is publicized.
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This version corrects Trustee Pat Shamansky’s first name. It also corrects a typographical error in the original, in David Isom’s final quote of the article.