San Diego Unified Board of Education, San Diego Unified School District, San Diego Unified School District Superintendent Cindy Marten, SDUSD Trustee John Lee Evans, SDUSD Trustee Kevin Beiser, SDUSD Trustee Richard Barrera
California State Audit Report: K–12 Local Control Report Nov 2019
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A half-decade ago, Gov. Jerry Brown and the Legislature overhauled California’s school finance system with the avowed goal of closing the “achievement gap” separating poor and English learner students from their more privileged classmates.
School districts with large numbers of “at-risk” students would be given billions of extra dollars to improve their educations. From the onset, however, the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) drew criticism from education reform and civil rights groups.
While they applauded the concept, they complained that LCFF would shovel more money into local school coffers without tracking how it was being spent or whether it was closing the gap.
Brown, backed by the state’s education establishment, rejected the complaints. He cited the religious principle of “subsidiarity” in contending that local school officials could be trusted to spend the money wisely.
It soon became evident, however, that much of the extra money was being siphoned into general purposes, especially for the salary increases that school unions were demanding, leading to formal complaints and lawsuits. It’s also evident that the achievement gap is still stubbornly wide.
This week, the criticism of LCFF’s implementation was substantiated in a landmark report by State Auditor Elaine Howle. It’s highly critical of the state Department of Education for sloppy administration and scant oversight, of districts’ often indecipherable and inaccurate reports, and of county offices of education for not fulfilling their role as LCFF monitors.
Howle’s staff delved into how three large school districts, San Diego Unified, Oakland Unified and Clovis Unified, implemented LCFF on the assumption that what was learned about them would be true statewide.
“We are particularly concerned that the state does not explicitly require districts to spend their supplemental and concentration funds on the intended student groups or to track their spending of those funds,” Howle’s report declared. “Without a means of tracking how districts use (LCFF) funds, state and local policymakers and other local stakeholders lack adequate information to assess the impact of those funds on the outcomes of intended student groups.”
School districts write Local Control and Accountability Plans (LCAPs) that are supposed to reveal how the additional money is to be spent. “However,” auditors found, “all three districts we reviewed produced 2018–19 LCAPs that are hundreds of pages long (and) LCAPs of these lengths cannot tell a simple, brief, and coherent story of each district’s goals; rather, their length and complexity reduces readability and transparency.”
Furthermore, the auditors noted, “districts sometimes used jargon that made it difficult to understand how they planned to spend their supplemental and concentration funds. San Diego Unified provided one particularly difficult description: ‘Integrated Multi‑Tiered Systems of Support (I‑MTSS) will be implemented in Grades TK–12 through the Academics and Agency (A²) model by ensuring the essential elements and solution seeking processes are in place at all schools.”
“The state now has an opportunity to take an important step toward learning more about the effectiveness of billions of dollars that it allocates for K–12 education,” the report says.
Yes, it does, but will Gov. Gavin Newsom, the state school board he appoints and state schools Supt. Tony Thurmond act or continue the head-in-the-sand attitude?
Those in the education establishment don’t want the accountability that Howle recommends. They prefer to issue opaque, jargon-laden pronouncements of good intentions while sponsoring two ballot measures that would raise billions of new tax dollars for them to spend as they see fit.
District Deeds Synopsis:
Although this audit report is only for the 2018/2019 LCFF it confirms what District Deeds has identified as the Standard Operating Procedure of incompetent and corrupt San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) Elementary School Superintendent (ESS) Cindy Marten and her equally corrupt Board of Edcuation Trustees controlled by Trustee Richard “Tricky Dick” Barrera for the last 6 years. We urge our readers to review the full K–12 Local Control Report.
The report shows that the disgracefully corrupt Marten, Barrera and their acolytes use every loophole in the California deployment of the LCFF to their corrupt advantage.
NOT spending all the “supplemental and concentration funds” and carrying them over to the following year budget denies the current years neediest students the supports they desperately need and allows the corrupt spending to be covered up.
Complex LCAP’s that are “Hundreds of pages long” reduces readability and transparency.” and punishes ALL Stakeholders who need to keep the corrupt Marten/Barrrera dictatorship accountable.
Not surprisingly for this SDUSD dictatorship, extremely long, complex LCAP documents that allow improper carryover spending is not enough.
The SDUSD was specifically cited for using “jargon that made it difficult to understand how they planned to spend their supplemental and concentration funds.”
Every year the corrupt Marten/Barrera SDUSD dictatorship, the San Diego “Education Establishment”, intentionally provides “opaque, jargon-laden pronouncements of good intentions while sponsoring two ballot measures that would raise billions of new tax dollars for them to spend as they see fit.”
Shame on ESS Marten, Tricky Dick Barrera and their subservient acolytes for the educational damage they have done to hundreds of thousands of Students through this annual LCAP scam.
What a disgrace!
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WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A PROGRESSIVE TODAY?
One place to look is the platform of the Progressive Democrats of America.
Their list of issues include:
- Healthcare Human Rights
- Equal Rights Amendment
- End Corporate Rule
- Stop Global Warming
- Voter Access
- Economic & Social Justice
- Ending Wars
There is a general theme here. To be “progressive,” it would seem, is to fight for equitable access. Access to healthcare. Access to equal pay. Access to voting rights. Access to justice. Access to a clean environment. Access to peace and wellness.
To me, this progressive platform can be boiled down to a single objective: creating a system in which all people have access to quality education, jobs, health, housing and justice—regardless of race, gender, sexual expression, religion, economic status or zip code.
Do you know what else falls under this progressive platform? School choice.
Consider family A: Two parents are considering where to send their firstborn child to kindergarten. They are not thrilled with the local neighborhood public school. They are privileged with the financial means to afford private school tuition. They apply for a spot and are offered admission. They choose to enroll their child in the private school.
Consider family B: Two parents are considering where to send their firstborn child to kindergarten. They are not thrilled with the local neighborhood public school. They would like to enroll their child in a school district in a neighboring town/catchment/county. The real estate costs more, but they are privileged with the financial means to afford the necessary rent/mortgage. They choose to move and enroll their child in their preferred neighborhood public school.
Consider family C: Two parents are considering where to send their firstborn child to kindergarten. They are not thrilled with the local neighborhood public school. They cannot afford private school tuition. They cannot afford to move to a new town/catchment/county/district. They have no choice but to enroll their child in their local neighborhood public school and hope for the best.
This is not progressivism.
This is inequitable access to quality education based upon one’s financial standing.
Here’s what progressivism looks like.
Consider family D: Two parents are considering where to send their firstborn child to kindergarten. They are not thrilled with the local neighborhood public school. They cannot afford private school tuition. They cannot afford to move to a new town/catchment/county/district. They look around for options. In addition to their local neighborhood public school, there is a parochial school, a charter school and a public magnet school. They consider a voucher for the parochial school. They consider applying to the public charter school lottery. They consider applying for the public magnet school. They decide to apply for all of them. They receive the results, then choose to enroll their child in the school that is best for their family.
Family A can still choose to pay private school tuition. Family B can still choose to move. But no longer is Family C left without an option because they cannot afford one.
This, to me, is the heart of school choice.
It’s not about bashing teachers or teachers unions. It’s not about privatizing education. It’s not about pushing religious education. It’s not about segregation.
School choice is about ensuring all families have access to quality educational opportunities for their children—regardless of race, gender, sexual expression, religion, socioeconomic status or zip code.
What could be more progressive than that?
District Deeds Synopsis:
The corrupt SDUSD Board of Education is on the record for wanting to put a “moratorium” on charter school growth. On May 28, 2019 the SDUSD Board of Education voted to approve a resolution to stop the growth of Charter Schools.
Here is the Board action: SDUSD Anti Charter Resolution
The corruption of the SDUSD Board of Edocation is palpable.
The sponsor of the resolution is “bought and sold” Trustee Tricky Dick Barrera.
The SDUSD “Resolution” claims that:
“In August 2018, an evaluation of 43 LCAPs for charter schools in five districts, found charter school engagement, transparency, and accountability woefully lacking to such a degree that it was sometimes impossible to determine how charter schools were spending millions of dollars.”
Bit what about “transparency and accountability” in the SDUSD”? In the first article above regarding LCAP transparency for the SDUSD, the California State Auditor said:
“The criticism of LCFF’s implementation was substantiated in a landmark report by State Auditor Elaine Howle. It’s highly critical of the state Department of Education for sloppy administration and scant oversight, of districts’ often indecipherable and inaccurate reports, and of county offices of education for not fulfilling their role as LCFF monitors.” including the SDUSD!
So to set this straight, corrupt Trustees Tricky Dick Barrera, “MIA” Beiser and “You Can’t Handle the Truth” Evans voted to hold Charter Schools accountable for “transparency and accountability” while refusing to hold corrupt ESS Cindy Marten accountable to do the same within the SDUSD!!!
So now we get to add another characteristic to the SDUSD Board of Education and ESS Marten.
Not only is the SDUSD Board of Education Trustees corrrupt, self serving liars that are bought and sold by special interest groups to get elected, they are 100% certified HYPOCRITES!
Congratulations to the “Progressive Democrats” on the SDUSD Board of Education…you have sunk to a new low!!!
Generalizations tied to the holiday don’t paint the whole picture of the numerous cultures that were spread across the Americas.
Quote from Article:
Classroom lessons around the Thanksgiving holiday are populated by mostly mythic stories about the celebration’s origins, painting rosy images of the pilgrims of Plymouth, Massachusetts, and local Wampanoag tribe of Native Americans coming together to share a feast.
Children’s and young adult author Cynthia Leitich Smith sees room for educators to push beyond their lessons a bit when it comes to teaching these topics, suggesting curriculum can be integrated throughout the school year — and across any discipline — with just a bit more sleuthing on the part of teachers and students alike.
When it comes to using Thanksgiving as the traditional marker for incorporating lessons on Native American culture and history, many experts, like Natalie Martinez, a New Mexico Public Education Department Indigenous New Mexico Curriculum Initiative curriculum lead team member, point out that these “origin myths” are rife with inaccuracies and stereotypes.
The better approach is to bring original sourcing, along with native voices, to the classroom and weave these perspectives into lessons. Those who want to get started can begin by examining the history in their own backyard.
Finding sources in your community
Martinez suggests educators begin their search online, where there are a number of curriculum options for K-12 classrooms. She points to the “Indigenous Wisdom” curriculum from the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, the “Since Time Immemorial” curriculum mandated by the state of Washington, and “An Indigenous Peoples’ History for Young People,” which has an added curriculum guide written by Martinez along with several lesson plans for teachers to use.
Educators should also look within their own neighborhood and community for sourcing. To start, Martinez points to the website Native Land, which is curated by an indigenous-led, nonprofit group and includes an interactive map that can users can search to find indigenous territories across Canada and the United States.
Look to native voices
Smith, also an honorary board member of We Need Diverse Books, believes while there are rich options for curriculum material from national sources like the Native Knowledge 360 from the Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian or young adult literature options on her site, teachers and administrators can also turn to resources in their own communities, as Martinez had suggested.
“Educators can research to find out whether Native Nations in their area can direct them to speakers for school visits and/or invite native children’s and young adult authors and illustrators to speak about their work,” she said. “An in-person or virtual presentation can have high impact. Remember to ask for information about their honorarium and be prepared to pay it. Video can be a successful fallback choice.”
Laura Ferguson, who has taught Native American studies at Helena College and Carroll College, both in Montana, also encourages educators to push against generalities that can come up in K-12 classrooms when teaching about the Thanksgiving holiday and to avoid references to Native Americans presented in a broad sense. Ferguson notes there is a great deal of diversity between people, even in the same regions.
“You want children to understand they are bound to a specific landscape, with a specific culture,” said Ferguson, currently the associate editor at Montana The Magazine of Western History, published by the Montana Historical Society. “There is a place where you can talk about people, but it’s best practice to talk about specific people and where they are geographically located.”
For those educators who are looking to bring Native American histories into their class and to tie them to the Thanksgiving holiday, Ferguson suggests giving students an assignment to take apart the myths associated with what’s often described as the “first encounter” and the “first holiday” instead.
“Turn [students] into document sleuths,” she said. “Tell them to look at the information presented to them, and discern what is accurate and what is not. Have them decide what are facts and what are not facts.”
Forming partnerships with local organizations can support this work, particularly in helping students uncover original materials, primary documents and the voices of local people. This is an assignment Ferguson herself has used with students and educators in her former work, bringing together schools, local museums and people, she said.
District Deeds Synopsis:
With Thanksgiving coming up in a few weels we thought this article might assist SDUSD Stakeholders come up with some ideas to help Students better understand the real history and realities of the holiday.
We especially like the idea of turning Students into “document sleuths” to “discern what is accurate and what is not. Have them decide what are facts and what are not facts.”
Now for our Quote of the Week:
“Hypocrisy is the necessary burden of villainy.” – Samuel Johnson
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!