Here are some interesting articles we received and discovered this past week…
Quote from Article:
Because we want our children and grandchildren to be ready for college, NAACP members like me have chosen tuition-free public charter schools. But instead of protecting our rights, the NAACP is going along with labor unions and trying to shut down our schools.
I am an NAACP member, mother of three, grandmother of seven, aunt of 14 and an advocate for all African American children, whom my school district consistently and persistently fails. I believe the NAACP should be suing the state of California for “educational malpractice” on behalf of African American students statewide.
Instead, they are on the wrong side of a debate about parental choice. That’s why my NAACP branch in San Bernardino recently passed a resolution to overturn the NAACP National Board’s call for a charter school moratorium.
California’s traditional, government-run public schools have a terrible track with Black students. Test scores from 2018 showed a full 80% of Black kids in California can’t do math at grade level and 68% can’t read or write at grade level. That failure to educate our children leads to incarceration and other problems that continue to plague our community.
Shutting down charter schools that are better serving 50,000 of California’s Black kids doesn’t make sense. A reasonable position for the NAACP would be to hold all public schools accountable to the same high bar, charter and district alike.
For example, right now in California, student academic achievement is the most important factor in a school board’s decision to approve a charter school—as it should be.
But the school-related unions want to change the rules to protect school district budgets, arguing it shouldn’t matter if a neighborhood like mine has failing schools. If a new charter school would cause the district to lose enrollment and money, no matter how it might help kids, the union says the school board should be able to deny it.
Never mind whether the charter school can provide kids with a better education. The union’s bright line in this public debate is that academic achievement not be considered in the approval of schools. That’s just wrong.
Unions realize they have a money problem. They have literally bankrupted some urban school districts with their pension, health care and salary demands. While national teacher strikes garnered public sympathy, I won’t sacrifice my grandkids’ education to foot the bill for mismanaged school districts.
Neither will voters in Los Angeles, who just voted down a parcel tax that would have bridged LA Unified’s $500 million budget gap—a shortfall created because the school board agreed to a union contract that the district couldn’t afford. It appears that the public enthusiasm for #RedforEd does not extend to paying new taxes.
Recently, I heard someone suggest Black kids are the new cotton being harvested for unions’ public school funding. I agree, and I’m sick of it.
While the NAACP’s alignment with organized labor may square with blue state Democratic politics, it doesn’t jive with the needs of African American children, who are being failed by the very system the unions are protecting. Unions are driving an “adults first” agenda to eliminate charter schools and protect their monopoly over public education, regardless of the fact that the schools they control don’t serve Black children well.
This is a clear case where Black people cannot afford to have blind allegiance to labor. I’m disappointed, not just as an NAACP member, but also as a 25-year union member at the school district where I worked.
But other bills, including the one that would allow districts to reject charters for financial reasons, remain alive. The unions have seized on this political moment to try and get rid of charter schools, a student-centered reform they never wanted in the first place.
Cleverly, they have the NAACP in tow to silence voices on the left like mine who have been failed by the union’s public schools.
I don’t expect more from the unions, but I do from the NAACP, the nation’s oldest civil rights group. That’s why I am going to the National NAACP Convention in Detroit to let my voice be heard.
Enough is enough.
District Deeds Synopsis:
An extremely important article written by Ms. Joette Spencer Campbell, an NAACP member, about her opposition to the moratorium on Charter Schools that failed to get out of congressional committee due to widespread protests.
Ms. Campbell has a lot to say about how the NAACP National Board and California Teachers’ Unions were strongly in favor of the moratorium and continue to support other anti-Charter School measures.
In late May, despite widespread protests against the measure, the San Diego Education Association (SDEA) forced the “bought and sold” Democrat San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) Board of Education to support the Charter School moratorium.
As we have said in the past, the job of the SDEA is to strongly pressure the SDUSD Board of Education to support issues that will increase SDEA Membership. Adding non-union Charter Schools will decrease SDEA membership.
That is the job of the SDEA…they have that right and that obligation to its membership.
For Tricky Dick Barrera and the rest of the “bought and sold” SDUSD Trustees to approve the Anti Charter initiative to pay off a campaign contribution debt is not the job of elected officials…it is corrupt and a betrayal of ALL Stakeholders including Teachers.
According to the Channel 5 San Diego story, Trustee Sharon Whitehurst Payne, who “bravely” abstained from the vote was quoted as saying:
“Given the fact that we already have a state commission that is taking a look at it, we don’t need to weigh in on it. Let them do their jobs,” said school board president Sharon Whitehurst-Payne.
Guess who is on the “state commission” that is “taking a look at it”?
Corrupt, incompetent Elementary School Supertintendent (ESS) Cindy Marten!!!
The same Cindy Marten whose financial mismanagement and operational incompetence created a $124 million budget deficit.
The same corrupt Marten who does not have the time to learn or fulfill the job of SDUSD Superintendent but does have the time to fly to Sacramento for public relations purposes to try to rebuild her horrible Superintendent reputation.
The same administratively weak Payne, who is trying to get re-elected in an area where she LOST the popular vote, is trying to trick voters through her phony abstention against a sure to pass 3-0 vote… a classic political move perfected by the absent Trustee Kevin “Under Investigation’ Beiser.
The sad truth is that as long as there are super majorities by ANY party in the State, City and School Board, corruption and cronyism rules at the expense of ALL Stakeholders, especially the neediest students and families.
Some 35% of principals stay at their school for less than two years. Research from Learning Policy Institute and NASSP details why and offers strategies to improve those numbers.
Quote from Article:
As the need to recruit and retain high-quality teachers has gained the spotlight amid shortages nationwide, so too has the need to reduce turnover among principals.
According to research from the Learning Policy Institute (LPI), produced in collaboration with the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), 35% of principals stay at their school for less than two years. Just 11% stay for a decade or more.
Additionally, nearly one in five principals leaves each year.
According to the research, a mixed-methods study that included a literature review on principal turnover and focus groups with principals, the top reasons cited by principals for leaving their jobs were:
- poor working conditions
- lack of resources
- insufficient salaries
- inadequate preparation and professional development
- overwhelming job with inadequate support
- lack of decision-making authority
- high-stakes accountability policies
The research also shows that principals are highly committed to their students and staff, and that the root of the turnover problem is school conditions.
Hector Espinoza of Eastlake High School in Chula Vista, California, talked about his progression to the principalship over his four decades in education — from instructional aid to teacher to administrator. He said that personal commitment drives him, but there are factors beyond that.
There are days when principals start questioning things, Espinoza said, and it’s important to have some professional and personal balance. There are a variety of influences on a principal’s job performance that include pressures from local, state and national levels, as well as from superintendents and central offices.
School leaders, he said, have to recognize they can’t do it all on a daily basis and that it’s okay to delegate. The challenges named in the research, he added, exist to some degree in any school. So he stays positive.
“When people ask me how I’m doing, I always tell them the same thing,” Espinoza said. “If I had a tail, I’d be wagging it.”
The reality, he said there’s a $23 million budget deficit in his district, and that gap is expected to persist. When local autonomy is taken away because of those budget concerns, he said it’s important to recognize the influences he can’t control and move on with it.
District Deeds Synopsis:
We found this study very interesting in that it basically covered all the reasons that Principals RUN AWAY from the SDUSD under the incompetent, corrupt ESS Cindy Marten. In the first 3 years of the Marten regime, over 120 of the 150 school sites had their Principals removed.
This purge of talented leaders was duplicated in the SDUSD central office where virtually the best of the best left almost immediately after Marten was appointed illegitamately as Supertintendent in violation of the Brown Act.
The list of talented leaders who left is long and they have brought their skills to surrounding school districts through multiple Supertintendent and other top central office position appointments. All have been a huge loss to the SDUSD.
The list of reasons for Principals leaving the SDUSD includes all the items that the study uncovered PLUS a few unique item under the regime of corrupt ESS Marten.
Those unique reasons for leaving under Marten include:
- Cronyism in hiring decisions including appointing Marten servile sycophants and fake community selection commitees with preselected sycophant candidates (most recently at Lincoln High School) like we described in our “Principal Selection Slide Show Series“
- Rampant bullying and student sexual abuse with the Principal hands being tied due to weak and ineffectual Central Office support that is more concerned about avoiding lawsuits than exposing the numerous student safety risks.
- Principals being forced to choose between telling the truth about SDUSD operational and financial dysfunction or facing termination if they do so.
- Principals being forced to cover up funding and budget improprieties that take services away from the neediest students.
No wonder that Teachers, students and staff are joining the talented Principals and senior staff in running away from the horrendously mismanaged SDUSD under the horrendously incompetent and corrupt ESS Cindy Marten and Trustee Tricky Dick Barrera.
Public Attitudes Toward Gifted Education: Supportive, Complacent, Incomplete
Link to Study: Gifted Study 2019
Quote from Article:
Authored by Institute president Betsy Jones and Institute fellow Shelagh Gallagher, the report is aimed partly at advocates within the field of gifted-and-talented education, as a substantial portion of it is devoted to “market testing” various terms and phrases to determine which resonate best with which audiences and constituencies as well as the type of “messaging” that seems most effective in building public support for programs of this sort. (The rather surprising winner: “Money for prisons, not for gifted.”)
Broadly speaking, Americans are supportive of gifted education, would like to see it better resourced, would like to see teachers better prepared to do it well, and understand the importance of democratizing it by ensuring that more poor and minority youngsters get identified as gifted and given additional education services. That doesn’t mean sweeping everyone in, however, as three-quarters of respondents believe that giftedness is “rare”—but two-thirds believe that gifted students need special programs, not that they’ll do fine anyway because they’re smart.
Which is to say that, notwithstanding the impulse to direct additional resources into gifted education and to encompass a wider range of kids within it, there’s widespread complacency about the enterprise in its present form.
Which may have something to do with its formlessness. Gifted education in the U.S. has two abiding problems. One is how to define and identify “gifted” students—every state with a definition or mandate has a different one, ranging from exceptionally high scores on some test to a version of “everyone is gifted in some way.” The other quandary is what, exactly, to do for those who get identified, i.e., how to “serve” them, with the dizzying array of current offerings ringing from a bit of after-school supplementation to entirely separate schools. In short, there’s no agreement on who’s gifted, what exactly “gifted education” is, or how it should be done.
Unstated in this report, and apparently unasked in the survey, is the problem of leadership in the realm of gifted education. Just about every other element, faction and interest group within American K–12 education musters large, strongly-led, and well-funded advocacy organizations—often membership-based, often supported by philanthropy—that agitate, advocate, hire lobbyists, contribute to election campaigns, and generally make noise on behalf of their cause and in opposition to laws, regulations, policies, and practices that they believe would harm it. Most also have champions and defenders occupying elective offices, usually at both state and national levels.
Gifted education, by comparison, is limp, struggling, and low visibility.
District Deeds Synopsis:
By comparision, the SDUSD Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) program is exactly the same, or worse, than how the article describes Gifted Education nationally:
SDUSD GATE is limp, struggling, and low visibility – District Deeds
District Deeds had children in the SDUSD GATE program before incompetent ESS Cindy Marten took over. It was a nationally acclaimed, cutting edge department that strongly supported GATE programs at every Cluster and almost every single elementary, middle or high school in the SDUSD. There was a central office GATE department with a Director and multiple staff members.
When ESS Marten took over she promised GATE families and GATE DAC leadership that GATE would continue as a nationwide leader in Gifted education.
Now, 5 years later, it is impossible to find who is in charge of a nonexistent SDUSD GATE Department.
District Deeds clicked on the GATE “Contact us” page and the following popped up:
Yup…no SDUSD GATE leadership defined and an anonymous “firstname.lastname@example.org” email address.
So we went to the “Office of Leadership and Learning” and found the following:
GATE buried among Vapa, Magnet and Early Childhood Education.
We decided to dig deeper.
We searched the whole GATE home page trying to find what SDUSD employee is responsible for GATE.
There was not one SDUSD employee assigned to the GATE program listed!!!
What we found was outdated and incomplete information and the following fake Gate Deoartment Mission Statement probably composed by the SDUSD propaganda department:
Besides the Mission Statement, you can see the notation below directing parents to a department called the “Office of Related and Low Incidence Services” for GATE testing information.
We looked for this weird department on the following list of Departments on the SDUSD website
We couldn’t find it!!!
So we searched specifically for the “Office of Related and Low Incidence Services”:
That’s right…the ONLY place that “department” shows up is on the GATE deoartment itself!!!
What a total scam and disservice to GATE Stakeholders by the dishonest ESS Marten
So instead of a REAL GATE Department, we have the “Office of Leadership and Learning” barrel of miscellaneous educational areas and non existent “Office of Related and Low Incidence Services.”
The truth is, there is no REAL GATE Department left…just a miscellaneous group of SDUSD staff in a miscellaneous “Office of Leadership and Learning” with your child’s GATE testing in a non-existent “Office of Related and Low Incidence Services”.
Regarding SDUSD GATE, District Deeds has only 2 questions for the incompetent, dishonest and unprincipled ESS Marten and her propaganda department:
- How can a nonexistent Gate Department have a Mission Statement?
- With all your lies, what drugs do you take to be able to sleep at night?
Now for our Quote of the Week:
“The truth is that a lie is also a truth.” ―
Have a great week!!!
- Your family has been injured by the San Diego Unified School District, go to the District Deeds Complaint Forms page to find instructions to fight for your Civil Rights!
- YOU ARE TIRED OF THE COVER UPS AND LIES BY SUPT. CINDY MARTEN…
Please Click the Link Below and sign the Petition Today and READ the COMMENTS to Support the REMOVAL of Marten by SDUSD Stakeholders!