District Deeds is posting the following open letter from a Lincoln High School Parent on behalf of ALL San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) Stakeholders who have had their children educationally neglected and abused by the current SDUSD Superintendent Cindy Marten, her senior staff and the Board of Education.
Dear Whomever It May Concern,
I’m not sure if it’s the lack of diversity among high level administrators – no one in high positions has any former or current investment in the success of students from this underserved, financially stunted part of San Diego or if plain old hateful racism is to blame. Regardless of the reason for blocking student success, my daughter’s senior year was completely ruined. When she looks back at her 2020 school days, it WILL NOT be COVID-19, the over-policing violence, or even the world wide protests which will mar her memories. She will remember that Lincoln High School went out of its way to crush her dreams.
On the morning of June 9th, 2020, I received a robo-call from Lincoln stating that a link to the 5:00 pm graduation would be posted on the Lincoln website. It wasn’t. At 6:00 pm I received a text message containing a YouTube link from 619-732-6115. I received another text at 8:00 pm with a “corrected” link. A happy graduation viewing for the Williams family it was not.
The next day I received a robo-call saying students could ride through and get their diplomas the next day. I thought that was short notice. Within the same hour I received a robo-call recorded by Stephanie Brown informing that the distribution would actually take place that very day. No time was specified in either call.
By the time I secured transportation for the diploma drive through, my daughter no longer wanted to go. Note that my child chose to transfer to Lincoln in 11th grade. Her reason was that she wanted more diversity than was offered at the High School located in the BILLION dollar downtown library, which supplied every student with a personal MAC computer. Her former school was run like a private school by a Black woman who invested energy into student success. Against my intuition, I allowed the transfer out of respect for the fact that (Name Deleted) has been successfully responsible with her stellar academic success since pre-school. I thought it would be disrespectful not allow her to make her own decision about where to attend. I USED to believe that the school didn’t matter, only hard work and effort mattered. I was egregiously wrong.
Bar none, allowing her transfer to Lincoln is the worst parenting mistake I’ve ever made. I’m sick with regret about not protecting her from the predators and gargoyles at Lincoln.
In addition to being a generally awesome person and highly intelligent student, (Name Deleted) presided over the Key Club, was an officer in the MECHA Club, and served on the SSC student advisory board. Our entire family gave significant time, energy, and money in support of extracurricular activities to encourage student engagement and positive community representation for Lincoln. Fundamentally, Lincoln (sans one small handful of teachers and program supporters) failed to reciprocate or display genuine care for (Name Deleted) academic goals or precious future. It breaks my heart that she no longer cares for Lincoln and often expresses j-oy that she will never again have to set foot on campus. She was thrilled to learn being quarantined meant she no longer had to endure attending school in person. The girl turns her head away when we pass Imperial Avenue on the 805 freeway. She doesn’t even want to see the place.
She was repeatedly disregarded and overlooked while her education was being obstructed for so long, she completely lost her school spirit. Despite her newfound apathy, she never quit any activities. Unlike Lincoln’s highest powers, (Name Deleted) is a respectable person with integrity to spare.
I am writing to express a few of a plethora of insidious experiences which stole my daughter’s school spirit in her senior year. Buckle up.
An AP Calculus class containing less than 11 students was abruptly cancelled two weeks before the end of the semester and end of the quarter in December of 2019, and my daughter was placed in a ceramics class. This took place without a word, letter, email, text, or phone call to notify me about a change to her schedule. She came home from school and told me what happened that day. Please be reminded this is her SENIOR year. I subsequently learned she would not receive a grade for either class.
I spent the rest of that week with Lincoln on redial. I lost time at work trying to reach anyone to beg for reinstatement of the class. After realizing I wouldn’t be ignored, I was rebuffed by Clayton Ballard, lied to by Stephanie Brown, and given the run around by Cindy Marten until I ascended the ladder of authority. After getting the message that I’d contact the State if I couldn’t reach them, my calls were answered.
Sorrowful, Cindy “give me the money” Marten, Clayton “hide student sex abuse” Ballard, and Stephanie “loves to call the police on Black passersby” Brown could have started cutting anywhere but chose to begin with advanced Math. Since the merry band of oppressors have zero expectation of student success, it actually makes sense that they value ceramics over STEM.
The interrupted AP Calculus class disrupted her entire schedule with only two weeks left in the semester. Altogether, it’s been of no consequence that deliberate and conscious decisions were made to hinder the education process because the decision makers at Lincoln have no value for the student body nor the surrounding community. All of my begging and pleading eventually got the class somewhat reinstated.
My daughter would not only have been short of credits, but also the weighted AP score towards her GPA, and the knowledge – you know, actual education- she needed at the most crucial time of her life. Her plan to attend a prestigious University would have ceased to exist. They successfully killed her Ivy League scholarship consideration, the fruition of my biggest fear.
Hearing that low enrollment and “poor budget projections” was the “reason” AP Calculus class was cut exacerbated my frustration and anger. The criminal trio still doesn’t care about the severe ramifications of their moronic choice to cut AP Calculus. For the record, the condemned budget has yet to be produced for view or review. When asked the whereabouts of the budget at an SSC meeting, Stephanie Brown looked stunned and surprised before referring to her predecessor’s administrative mismanagement. She has yet to articulate a plan to locate the missing document. Ahem.
Lincoln’s reputation has been disgusting for a long time, but when trying to contact the ACLU, La Prencia, The Southwestern College Sun, The Reader, CityBeat, and any other outlet I could think of, I felt like I was dragging all of Southeast San Diego through the mud.
On top of the aforementioned atrocities, I was teased and mocked because I cared and took action. Fighting for the AP Calculus class/grade was humiliating. My daughter is still embarrassed. Clayton Ballard, the head of counseling, clearly thought the idea of my kid attending Wellesley College was a joke because he made hand gestures and giggled in my face when I arrived at the open house. Later that same night the then new, and still misplaced, principal Brown entered the Parent Welcome Room to check on ballots and ballot boxes and neglected to make eye contact with parents in the room. There were only 7 of us for her to greet or even nod at. She only acknowledged the ballot keeper. No handshake. No introduction. Never did she bother to offer as little as a smile at OPEN HOUSE.
This entire fiasco of a school year has been infuriating, and I cannot simply sweep it under the rug. They won’t let me move on as they continue to stumble all over every single 2020 graduation experience. It must not be excused, and it certainly should not be allowed to be repeated. Because I feel this is too long, and there is so much more I could share, I’ll end with hope because this has now been brought to your attention. I’ll leave conversations about the ineffective remedies provided for you. Please don’t forget to ask Marten, Ballard, and Brown, the trio of undeniable failures about “resolution” to the AP Calculus cancellation issue. I shall wait with bated breath for a response and hope for an appropriate reaction. I need you to make them do right by the kids they are highly paid to educate.
(Phone Number Deleted)
Thank you Ms. Williams for your bravery to stand up against the SDUSD dictatorship! We support you and urge our readers to do the same.
ESS Marten Sandimic Motto:
Hardly Work, Act Blind, Lie Big, Make Excuses
- 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!