Keppel parents, faculty, and students attended the December 8 Alhambra Unified School District (AUSD) board meeting to discuss matters including the reassignment of former Mark Keppel principal Jacinth “Jas” Cisneros to the district.
In an email sent out by Sharon Woo, a Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) Committee Chair Member, PTSA members were invited to attend the meeting to show support of Cisneros’ return. AUSD planned to reassign Cisneros to a different position within the district, but many meeting attendees called for her return to Keppel as principal. Some speakers stated that Cisneros wants to return to Keppel to serve the students. Denise Tso, another PTSA Committee Member, said, “She is a very transparent person…Our school removing her creates a cloud of suspicion.”
The Alhambra Police Department is not pressing criminal charges regarding Cisneros’ role in the recent Keppel incident. This was emphasized by teachers, parents, and students who addressed the board. Speakers voiced their support, listing accomplishments that Cisneros has spearheaded as principal of Keppel. These included the school’s increased academic achievement, new projects, events, and general comradeship. Woo said, “Principal Cisneros has done nothing wrong to be put on leave…I urge you to vote no [to move Principal Jacinth Cisneros to the district office]. She is dedicated and devoted to her students.”
AUSD considered Cisneros’ reassignment due to undisclosed, confidential reasons concerning a recent incident at Keppel. AUSD Board of Education Member Adele Andrade-Stadler mentioned the board’s consideration for the affected student and the parents involved in the issue that had removed Cisneros as principal. A meeting regarding the reassignment of Cisneros will be rescheduled at a later date, open to faculty and parents.
“Things are very difficult to explain when you have court, district attorney, and police departments involved. Our hands are bound by some of that confidentiality,” said Andrade-Stadler. “I plead with you all to bear with us and I will ask for that meeting before we go forward to move Jas.”