Parents have high educational expectations for their kids and the school that they attend.
Parents expect that the school will be clean and safe. They expect the Teachers to be honest and fair, fully credentialed and dedicated to their profession. They expect that the school site and district leadership will always consider Students first when making any and all operational and administrative decisions.
But what happens when one or all of those expectations are not realized? What can Parents, Guardians, Students and Community Stakeholders do when history repeats itself over and over in the SDUSD and Students, Parents and families are considered last?
After over 15 years of District Deeds attending SDUSD meetings, trainings and other SDUSD sponsored activities, there has not been even one attempt by the SDUSD to provide Stakeholders full, independent information from an independent source on how to successfully file complaints against the SDUSD.
Let’s get real, in the SDUSD world devoid of ethics, transparency and accountability, why would any SDUSD Stakeholder expect the district to assist parents in filing successful complaints that would prove SDUSD culpability and convict the district of a crime?
Instead, as usual, the corrupt SDUSD leadership attempts to subvert justice and recommends that you report complaints first to the school leadership that allowed the offense to occur and then to the corrupt “Quality Assurance Office” (QAO). The QAO then sends all your evidence to the multimillion dollar Legal Services office they report to that will make sure your complaint goes away by any means possible.
In other words, through process and diversion the SDUSD strips you and your child of your legal rights.
Here is the SDUSD Complaint flow posted on the SDUSD website:
That’s right…according to the QAO, TEN steps BEFORE you should file a complaint with the County, State or Federal Government!
An obviously corrupt “process”.
And what does the SDUSD do while you are working your way through this laborious and time consuming “Concern Process”?
They are funneling all your valid complaint information to the multimillon dollar legal department to subvert and undermine your complaint through loopholes or false testimony from corrupt SDUSD officials, just like they did to SDUSD/Lincoln Parents Shamiko Harris and Tonja Daniels as described in the Union Tribune:
“The parents met with Quality Assurance staff and a lawyer on May 31, four months after their boys stopped attending Lincoln. Daniels audio recorded the meeting, which was later transcribed by a court reporter.
The lawyer and district staffer kept asking the parents to explain everything from the beginning, while the parents resisted repeating what was in their report, according to the transcript of the audio recording.
“I take off work every day,” Harris said, according to the transcript. “I’m everywhere. But my kids are still failing. Now the school year is over. So what are we going to do about that?”
The meeting fell apart, and Harris and Daniels started cursing at the district employees. Harris dared them to call a National Guardsman on him.
“All he can do is kill me,” Harris said, according to the transcript. “I might as well be dead anyway, homie.”
Someone called police, who wrote an incident report listing Harris as a suspect. Later, five people working for the district wrote affidavits claiming Harris had threatened violence against district staff.
The transcript of the meeting recording does not show Harris making threats.
The district sought a workplace restraining order against him.”
And here is the proof of QAO reporting to Legal Services chain of command from the SDUSD website:
The following are important links to help all Parents and Students clearly define their Rights in the corrupt San Diego Unified School District. We encourage our readers to review every link and also to send us any additional links that would be helpful and that we can post in this space. Please send them to email@example.com.
Did you know that as a parent of a child in the public school system, you and your child forfeit some very important rights?
For example, districts in California operate under an archaic rule (derived under English common law in the 1700s) called,“in loco parentis” which means in place of a parent:
“In loco parentis. The term in loco parentis, Latin for “in the place of a parent” refers to the legal responsibility of a person or organization to take on some of the functions and responsibilities of a parent. Originally derived from English common law, it is applied in two separate areas of the law.
In loco parentis is a legal doctrine holding that educators assume custody of students in school because they are deprived of protection from their parents or guardians. Educators stand in loco parentis or translated, in place of the parent.”*
This means that while our children are enrolled in the public school system, parents yield their parental control (for the bulk of our children’s days and lives) to the school personnel, the teachers and administrators will act in the “best interest” of your child. Really. No, really? Are we really okay with this? Because it has been my experience as an advocate that school personnel will mostly NOT act in the best interest of your child. Case in point: the current state of the school to prison pipeline. This archaic doctrine is without a doubt one of the biggest contributing factors in perpetuating the school to prison pipeline. This practice must end if we are going to be serious about incarcerating our kids straight from the classroom.
Were you aware that you can send your child off to school one day and then possibly not see your child again until visiting day at Juvenile Hall? In fact, schools don’t even have to notify a parent when your child is being arrested. Many just leave it to the sheriff or school police to notify you after the fact. In fairness, some are nice enough to let you know when you come to the school to sign the pre-expulsion paperwork that your child is in jail. This is America? This is America.
A child in the public school system has zero rights to representation when being interrogated by school police, city police or sheriff during an investigation at the school. In other words, students who are interrogated by law enforcement do not get “Miranda rights” as prescribed by the United States Supreme Court. Most often, children are questioned alone and are intimidated and bullied by the police and end up confessing after hours of coercion.
There is no due process for kids. There should be. While in theory, individual rights of the students are protected by the 14th amendment, in practice, it is not so. The violation of those rights occurs once a student is interrogated without representation or parental consent. Thus, both students and parents give up a critical right in their due process when we continue to allow this to happen at schools all over the country but especially in California.
Even the ACLU has taken up the cause of education students and parents about their rights while in school.
I recently read an abstract in the Emory Law Journal that was dedicated this very topic. I hope you will take a moment to look at it.
As parents, as advocates, as a community and as a society, we must demand that this practice of violating students’ constitutional rights be done away with. We will be looking for a courageous legislator to carry legislation to end this practice and in turn truly impact the school to prison pipeline! Spread the word.