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Here are some interesting articles we received and discovered this past week…


Twice Exceptional, Doubly Disadvantaged? How Schools Struggle To Serve Gifted Students With Disabilities

Parents say it’s often impossible to find schools to educate bright kids who have disabilities. Now some are fighting to change that

Quote from Article:

To Eva Santiago, her son’s education has always felt like an impossible dilemma.

Before elementary school, the boy was diagnosed with autism, ADHD and anxiety, and in kindergarten he was placed in a small, self-contained class for kids with disabilities.

But he was articulate and curious, so when he was 6, Santiago took him to be tested for the city’s exclusive gifted-and-talented program. She was pleased when his score earned him one of the coveted spots.

But in his larger gifted-and-talented class, he became anxious and easily upset. He fought with students and teachers and spent most of the school day roaming the halls. After he kicked a security guard and the school called the police, Santiago said, she begged administrators to return him to a self-contained class. There, at least, his teachers could manage his behavioral challenges — even if it meant he breezed through his school work and learned little.

“Other kids would still be doing the assignments and he would be done,” recalled Santiago. “He just didn’t know what to do with himself.”


“We see kids whose challenges don’t show up on their report card, so they aren’t getting services,” said Jennifer Choi, a parent and founder of the advocacy group 2eNYC and a trustee of the nonprofit Twice Exceptional Children’s Advocacy. “And we see kids who are gifted, but they also have a disability, who lose the ability to participate in any sort of accelerated program because those programs often decline to provide special education services.”


One of the biggest barriers to educating 2e students, advocates say, is simply proving they exist. Under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, all students are entitled to the special services and accommodations necessary to enable them to learn. But to qualify for those services under the law, a student’s disability must “adversely affect educational performance.”

Schools and courts are left to determine what that means. If students are passing their classes and advancing from grade to grade, they’re more likely to be denied costly accommodations and services, which can include everything from a smaller student-teacher ratio to tutoring, to speech and occupational therapy. In the 2eNYC survey, more than a quarter of parents said they’d been told, “Your child is too smart for [special education services].”

District Deeds Synopsis:

This article sounded very familiar to District Deeds.  We have children that were identified as qualifying for San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) program back when the SDUSD actually had a nationally renowned GATE program.

We tried to have our kids tested for Special Education supports but were unable to do so until they were in 8th grade…after the focused GATE services had been provided…although we had been requesting that evaluation since 3rd grade.

We received the same response as in the article—

She was shocked, she said, when the disabilities evaluator at her son’s public elementary school noted that he was performing at grade level and determined that he didn’t qualify for any special education accommodations or services. 

With the ongoing dismantling of the SDUSD GATE program under incompetent Elementary School Superintendent Cindy Marten, the title of this article is verified by her destructive actions.

In the SDUSD, ALL GATE Students are exceptional AND “Doubly Disadvantaged”:

The deadly double:

A shrinking GATE program and a totally incompetent Superintendent Cindy Marten.

No wonder affluent GATE Parents are sending their GATE kids to private schools and the less affluent GATE Parents are sending their GATE Kids to Charter Schools that provide the evaluations and services they need as the SDUSD is losing thousands of students each year.

Those Private and Charter Schools have a message to all SDUSD Stakeholders:

Thanks Cindy!!!


Fixing California’s Big Education Data Gap

Quote from Article:

Legislation aimed at closing a big gap in California’s educational data system won passage last week from a key committee, opening the way for a new system backers hope will be ready by 2022.

SB 2 by state Sen. Steve Glazer, D-Orinda, would establish a new oversight committee that would guide the development of a single database that would track students—their performance and behavior—from early learning to college and entry into the work force.

“California does not have a statewide data system that tracks student progress through P-12 and higher education into the workforce,” said Glazer in a statement. “As a result, educators and policymakers cannot answer critical questions about student progress, which limits their ability to make evidence based changes to support better and more equitable opportunities for students.”


In a report last fall from Stanford University, researchers found that even basic questions about the performance of public schools in California couldn’t be answered, such as:

  • Are smaller K-3 class sizes a good investment?
  • Which schools are most successful in moving English learners to full proficiency?
  • Are the state’s publicly funded preschool programs having a positive impact on kindergarten readiness?

The big frustration, the Stanford team said, is that the data is being collected, it just couldn’t be easily shared.


“A longitudinal data system would help policymakers and educators figure out how to better support students in meeting their educational goals and the state’s workforce needs,” Glazer said. “It would monitor student progress from one grade to the next and measure whether students are on track to high school graduation, college enrollment, and college completion. It would include reforms to be monitored, gaps in the education system to be identified, and specific changes to be made.”

District Deeds Synopsis:

What a shock!!!

All the touted educational strategies promoted through countless Board of Education meetings and other propaganda by SDUSD Superintendent Cindy Marten and her crony Board of Education members led by Tricky Dick Barrera cannot be measured or proven to be effective through any data currently available!!!

The items mentioned in the article have been the justification for BILLION DOLLAR decisions over the last 5 years of the Elementary School Superintendent Cindy Marten tenure with NO PROOF that the strategies actually work.  As the article says:

even basic questions about the performance of public schools in California couldn’t be answered, such as:

  • Are smaller K-3 class sizes a good investment?
  • Which schools are most successful in moving English learners to full proficiency?
  • Are the state’s publicly funded preschool programs having a positive impact on kindergarten readiness?

What a PERFECT scenario for the unethical and secretive Elementary School Superintendent (ESS)Cindy Marten and Trustees Richard “Tricky Dick” Barrera, Kevin “Abuse Allegations” Beiser, John “You Can’t Handle the Truth” Evans, and Sharon “Flying By The Seat of Our Pants” Payne and Mike “Space Cadet” McQuary.

This incompetent crew can spend the $1.3 billion SDUSD budget and avoid ALL accountability and transparency for any of their educational strategies that do not work!

We’ll be watching the news to see if the SDUSD Superintendent and Board of Ed spend our SDUSD money to fly to Sacramento to lobby AGAINST SB 2 by state Sen. Steve Glazer.

Why We’re Struggling to Keep Teachers in Our Most Vulnerable Schools

Quote from Article:

A recent article from the Philadelphia Inquirer revealed truths that, while saddening, troubling and infuriating, were not exactly surprising.

High teacher turnover hurts kids and diminishes their likelihood of academic success, and the schools serving communities in deepest poverty have the highest rates of teacher turnover.

The picture painted by the article is dire. 

Experts say a stable teaching staff is crucial to a school’s academic success, and turnover of 25% in a year is cause for alarm.Twenty-six district schools experience turnover far beyond that measure. These schools lost at least 25% of their teachers for four years straight or lost more than one-third in each of the last two school years. These schools serve about 12,000 of the district’s most vulnerable students, nearly all of them minorities.

The situation, while maddening, is actually fairly easy to understand. New teachers go to where there are teacher vacancies, just as any new worker goes to where there are job openings. 


What happens when they get there, the article argues, is also predictable: “These new teachers flail as they try to master their craft. They don’t get adequate coaching and support, so their morale tanks and many leave. Then they’re replaced by recruits just like them, and the cycle begins again.”

When read alongside a 2018 summary report from the William Penn Foundation on preparing teachers for urban schools, the pictures gets even clearer.

According to the report, “Seventy-two percent of teachers felt unprepared to work in an urban classroom. Eighty percent felt unprepared to teach unmotivated students. Fifty-two percent felt unprepared to plan and deliver instruction. Sixty-two percent felt unprepared to teach culturally diverse students.”


Before we even jump into analyzing the numbers, we need to address the language used in this report. I recoil at the coded language of “urban classroom,” “unmotivated students” and “culturally diverse students.”  

According to the Philadelphia Notebook, “Fifty-two percent of the schools in the Pennsylvania suburbs of Philadelphia—Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery Counties—have no Black teachers.” And even within the city limits, less than one quarter of the teacher population is Black, despite Black and Brown students making up nearly two-thirds of Philadelphia’s student population.

District Deeds Synopsis:

Although this article is based on the Teacher turnover crisis in Philadelphia, it can be directly applied to the SDUSD:

The ESS Marten White Woman Mafia as described by many SDUSD Teachers, Principals, and Staff has created a toxic work environment that ADDS to the burden of SDUSD employees of color.

A phrase that really rang true for the SDUSD Employees:


Unfortunately, in the ESS Marten SDUSD disaster, that phrase applies to thousands of dedicated, committed and highly skilled SDUSD employees that dread going to work on Monday morning.

All that pain caused by one incompetent Superintendent and her corrupt Board of Education enablers.

Shame on them!!! 

Now for our Quote of the Week:

“Arrogance, ignorance, and incompetence. Not a pretty cocktail of personality traits in the best of situations. No sirree. Not a pretty cocktail in an office-mate and not a pretty cocktail in a head of state. In fact, in a leader, it’s a lethal cocktail.” -Graydon Carter 

Have a great week!!!



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