Herbert Simmons used an official-looking Altadena town council letterhead in all his correspondence to Pasadena Unified Superintendent Edwin Diaz, as well as telling Diaz that the council was behind the school recognition program he was promoting, according to the superintendent.
The Altadena Town Council as a whole has never endorsed Simmon's personal student/teacher of the month program.
Diaz, in an Aug. 20 letter to Altadena town council chair Gino Sund, said that "It was never revealed to me that the programs were being promoted solely by him personally ..."
In an Aug. 10 email to fellow councilmembers, Simmons stated:
The Student of the Month and Teacher of the Month programs were created by myself as a newly elected Councilmember of Census Tract 4602 and I do not need anything nor am I asking for anything from the Altadena Town Council. I have created this program on my own, and have not represented the Council in the process. It is my gift to the community. In no time in any correspondence have I used the Altadena Town Council or its letterhead. In fact, I have clearly stated that the programs are not endorsed by, or affiliated with, the Altadena Town Council.
In an Aug. 14 email, after controversy over Simmons' programs erupted, he sent out another email to his mailing list:
Though these programs have the support of Superintendent Edwin Diaz of PUSD, the principals of all ten schools in Altadena, the Altadena community, and several local businesses, the Altadena Town Council Executive Committee does not find my individual efforts appropriate. I have made it clear in my communications that these programs are not affiliated with the Altadena Town Council. I have also included a disclaimer stating that they are solely of my individual initiative.
But Diaz says in his brief Aug. 20 letter (which was confirmed to us by his office):
Dear Mr. Sund,
I am writing this letter to the Altadena Town Council to clarify my understanding of the programs being promoted by Mr. Herbert Simmons.
I was told by Mr. Simmons that the Altadena Student of the Month and Altadena Teacher of the Month programs were supported by the Altadena Town Council; in fact, all of his correspondence to me is on what appears to be Altadena Town Council letterhead.
It was never revealed to me that the programs were being promoted solely by him personally, without the backing of the Altadena Town Council.