Voice of San Diego
April 18  2008
Teachers Heading East

Now that San Diego teachers have been warned that their jobs might be cut, some
are looking eastward for jobs, the Associated Press reports. Texas and Nevada
school districts are recruiting heavily:

Precious Jackson has two years of teaching under her
belt and two school teacher-of-the-year awards to show for it. She also
has a pink slip.

Now Jackson is a prime target for growing school districts across the country
hoping to cherry-pick from thousands of California teachers who have been
warned they could be laid off because of state budget woes.

"Your future is in our classroom," the Fort Worth, Texas, school district says on a
San Diego billboard. It plans to send recruiters to the city next month to dangle
$3,000 signing bonuses.

Several Los Angeles-area newspapers are carrying ads for the Clark County, Nev.,
school district, which hopes to lure teachers to Las Vegas with $2,000 incentives.

"We don't hear things like that here," said
Jackson, 25, who teaches English at
Lincoln High School, her alma mater in San Diego's hardscrabble Lincoln
Park neighborhood.
"Instead we just don't know what to expect, and it makes us
feel underappreciated."

The story also mentions that San Diego Unified sent more layoff notices -- 913 --
than any other California school district.
How to Layoff a
Teacher of the Year
Voice of San Diego
By Scott Lewis
April 10, 2008

When the new grandiose
Lincoln High opened to
students this year, it
attracted too many
students. It also attracted a
young teacher from Chula
Vista, Guillermo Gomez.

I met Gomez at the
teacher's lounge during
lunch at Lincoln High
recently. Gomez and his
colleagues were planning
marches and various ways
to get their students to
express their displeasure
with proposed school
budget cuts around the
state -- cuts that, if fully
implemented as proposed,
would mean 913 school
teachers would be laid off

Gomez would be one of
them. A year and a half
ago, dressed in black
formal wear and smiling,
the young teacher
accepted one of the four
awards given each year to
the "teachers of the year"
in the county. He had been
a teacher for 10 years at
Vista Square Elementary
School in Chula Vista.

Despite his success, the
opportunity to teach at
Lincoln High School's new
School of Social Justice
intrigued him, and Gomez
moved not only into a
classroom with older kids
but into a new school
district -- San Diego
Unified. He says he took a
$10,000 pay cut for the
chance to teach at Lincoln.

No doubt, Lincoln is an
attractive place. There are
tennis courts on top of the
parking garage and each
classroom has a state-of-
the-art multimedia system.
The executive principal,
Mel Collins, strides around
the campus barking
instructions at security
personnel and haranguing
loiterers unsure, or
unwilling to say, where
they're supposed to be.

At the old Lincoln, Collins
said, a group of three
young men, chatting and
looking out over the
baseball field during class
time would have been
overlooked, if seen at all.
Not anymore, he says. In
15 minutes, I saw the
principal dress down three
security guards -- one for
sitting down.

It feels like good things are
happening at Lincoln.
Gomez clearly likes it. Not
too long ago, though, his
new employers repaid this
enthusiasm with a pink slip.

Now, talk to most anyone in
the education world and
they'll assure you that
Gomez and 912 of his
colleagues who have
gotten the pink slips
probably won't lose their
jobs. They'll say the
governor and Legislature
will come to a compromise
and the eventual cuts will
probably be small enough
that they can be
"absorbed." You have to
love that term in
discussions about
government budgets. It
usually means that the
infection of troubled times
is handled not with a
shocking amputation of
services or fat but with
something more like an
injection of some kind of
calming but lethal poison
into the system. The
symptoms of the budget's
troubles are delayed, but
the system's bones rot.

"Everybody knows there's
not going to be a 10
percent hit to education,"
said Camille Zombro, the
president of the local
teachers union, the San
Diego Education
Association. She added:
"One or two percent can be

Absorbed. That can be
reassuring I suppose, but
all Gomez actually knows
right now is that he and
several of his colleagues
got a letter putting them on
notice that soon they could
be let go. A letter like that
has to make you think
about things. It has a way
of making you worry.

He has a lot of company.
Gomez is one of 18
certified teachers at Lincoln
who got the letter. It's not
because the district and
school don't value him and
the others. They might like
them very much. The
problem is that Gomez is
considered a new teacher
in the city of San Diego. His
years in Chula Vista mean
nothing to the blind
bureaucracy of school

And since Lincoln is a new
school that recruited a lot
of new teachers and
transfers from other
districts and charter
schools, the disruption of
layoffs -- if they aren't
fictional -- will be
exaggerated. If the district
must cut, Lincoln will lose
18 teachers. This is
compared to seven at
Clairemont High School,
eight at Mira Mesa, 10 at
Morse High and nine at
Point Loma High School.

The same thing is
happening -- though worse
-- at Jackson Elementary
School, just south of San
Diego State in east San
Diego, where 24 of the
school's 26 teachers
received notices that they
will be laid off if the budget
cuts are as severe as they
possibly can be.

Sure, they will be replaced.
But the people who come in
will have gotten bumped
down from schools where
they wanted to be. They
may have done all they
could, in fact, to get away
from places like Jackson
and Lincoln.

"The folks I'm talking about,
the ones who may lose
their job are folks who
wanted to be here," Collins
told me. "This is not to say
we won't embrace new folks
who have been around the
block, but we like what we
have now. I'm going to be
reluctant to see people who
only wanted to be here to
have a job."

Why is this happening?
Lincoln may look like one of
the nicest schools in the
district, but this fancy
facility has only been
around a year.

The neighborhood has
been desperately trying to
pull its residents up to a
higher standard of living for
decades. During a time
when residents of wealthier
neighborhoods scorn the
development industry, for
example, the San Diego
city councilman who
represents the area
actively courts developers,
grocery stores, commerce
and progress of any kind.

A gleaming new campus
might be a symbol of a
better future but its
construction was not the
end goal. The school is
supposed to be a means to
an end.

The old Lincoln was
troubled. The new Lincoln
is just getting started. If you
rotate out a fifth of its
teachers after the first
year, you're not giving it
much of a chance at the
beginning. Why would
anyone choose to hammer
Jackson and Lincoln and
leave other schools in more
prosperous neighborhoods
much less affected?

The answer is simple.
They're trying to pretend
like no voluntary choice is
actually being made. State
law ensures that when
layoffs happen, they
happen to the teachers
with the least amount of
seniority. This allows both
the teachers union and
school administration
officials to shrug their
shoulders. They hide
behind the formula. The
school system is divided
into hundreds of
compartments, but when
they look at issues like this,
they look at teachers as
one large population, out of
which the youngest, and
supposedly least
experienced, must be

District officials say they
are literally comparing
teachers down to the day
they were hired. If they
need to cut 900 teachers,
they look at how many
teachers they have in the
school population, figure
out how many might
already retire and then
determine where the
seniority cut off is. If you
started with the district, in
the way the union deems
OK, one day before that,
you're OK. One day after,
though, and you've got to
turn that pink slip into
something to eat.

The blind eye of the
bureaucracy and union
contract, however, does
not see the seniority
Gomez and others have.
Gomez, after all, was
teacher of the year.

In the teachers lounge that
day were some of Gomez'
colleagues, many of whom
had also received notices
that their employment was

There was Edward Moller,
an art teacher, who's been
a teacher for nine years --
in the San Diego Unified
School District. But
because his first job was at
O'Farrell Community
School, a charter school,
he's denied seniority under
rules devised by the
teachers union and district.
Moller was let go after cuts
from O'Farrell last year. But
his colleague, an English
teacher named Chris Dier,
left O'Farrell just because
he wanted to be part of the
new Lincoln High.

Dier's enthusiasm was also
welcomed with a pink slip.

We might hope that laws
are created on the basis of
logic and for the public
good, and if that were the
case with this one, the only
possible rationality for it
would be that a teacher
who had been with the
district for one day longer
than another is more
important to us and to the
students than his or her
colleague who may have
started a day later.

But how does that logic
work when you meet
teachers like Moller, Gomez
and Dier? All experienced
-- just not the way the
union likes them.

Again, many say that these
three and the hundreds of
others handed pink slips
shouldn't worry too much.
This is either a ploy or just
an overreaction.

But a guy like Moller has to
act on his pink slip. He
can't rest his financial
future on the blind hope
that the teachers union
president is correct when
she scoffs that the
governor can't possibly be
serious about cutting the

Moller is currently applying
for other jobs, hoping that
the charter school High
Tech High, where he once
had an opportunity, might
be willing to hire when the
rest of the district fires. In
times of trouble, charter
schools have latitude to
make budgeting changes
that protect teacher jobs.

On the other hand, look at
the systematic way the
district must carry out these
layoffs: If it cuts a top
administrator from the
payroll, that person doesn't
go to the unemployment
line. Another rule gives her
the unquestioned right to
take her old job, say, as an
assistant top administrator.
Then the person who gets
kicked out of that job has
the unquestioned right to
take his old job. And so on
and so on. Until you get
down to the guy who last
year decided he'd drop
everything he built in Chula
Vista to go teach at the
new Lincoln High. The guy,
Gomez, who didn't care
about seniority. All he
seemed to care about was

And you give him a pink

Moller doesn't like it.

"We've been teaching nine
years, but we're looked at
as first-year teachers. We
have the chance of getting
bumped by more tenured
teachers. But where were
those teachers when
Lincoln opened? We
wanted to be here," Moller

"I would retire at Lincoln,"
he said.

He's a couple of decades
away from retirement,


School leaders hand out
the pink slips loyal to
the seniority rules -- a
result of state law. Even
reformers concede state
law restricts the district
to this automated
application of the

That doesn't mean the
local teachers union
doesn't like the rules.

The teachers union is
willing to howl about the
pain inflicted by these
cuts on single schools
like Jackson Elementary,
but not willing to
shoulder any of the
blame for the make up of
the rules that cause it to

Ask union officials about
the disproportionate
effect the layoffs would
have on a place like
Lincoln and they will say
something like what
Zombro told me.

"The school board
should have known it
was going to have this
effect when they
decided to do this," she

To do what? The layoffs
were coming, we were
told, from the
recommended cut of the
education budget that
would result in $80
million in cuts for San
Diego Unified.

So what could San Diego
Unified have done to
avoid it?

"They could have
decided not to lay off
teachers," Zombro said.

It's sort of like arguing
that the Chargers could
have avoided losing last
year's AFC
Championship Game by
deciding to score more
points than the Patriots.

Yes, they could have.
But how?

Zombro claims the
district is top-heavy, and
she rattled off some
stats. Across the state,
the average ratio is one
student for every 394
administrators. In San
Diego, she said, it is one
student for every 282

It's a good point --
ironically reminiscent,
actually, of conservative
gripes about the
education system. OK,
so say they cut
administrators at San
Diego Unified. There's a
bit of a problem:
remember what happens
to them when you cut
their jobs? They don't
line up for
unemployment, they
bounce someone else
out of a lower position.
And the cascade of
doom slides down to the
guy at Lincoln.

So give me something

Well, it's simple, the
unions contend, the
state shouldn't cut

The district won't have
to lay off teachers if the
state doesn't cut its

And the Chargers will go
to the Super Bowl if they
score more points than
the other teams they


There are other ironies.
Jackson Elementary, the
one facing a brutal
turnover in the event of the
layoffs becoming reality,
was just Wednesday listed
as one of the "California
Distinguished Schools."
According to a piece put
together recently by the
California Department of
Education, the school has
narrowed the much-fretted-
about achievement gap
and improved its situation

Now, again, 24 of the
school's 26 teachers could
be replaced this year.

No manager of a major
organization would institute
layoffs like this. Even
government agencies, like
the city of Chula Vista, give
their departments a chance
to hit budget targets.
Collins, the Lincoln
principal, says he could
meet a target for budget
cuts if he were asked.
Months ago, he was asked
to cut 5 percent of his
budget and he got rid of
$500,000 of that just by
rearranging the school

Without a change in state
law, the teachers could
never be evaluated by
merit when discussing
layoffs. The last time the
governor tried to change a
law like that, he almost
ruined his political career. It
will be a lot easier for him
to layoff teachers.

But no matter how
frustrated teachers and
principals are with the rules
that demand that the
layoffs follow this in times of
crisis, ultimately the ire
turns to the state.

Gomez wonders about all
the spending on the war in
Iraq. Couldn't that capital
be redirected to struggling
states and schools? Moller
wonders why the state
spends so much on
prisons. The state's
notorious Proposition 13-
restrictions on property
taxes are also a common

A report from the U.S.
Census bureau last week
put all the numbers out on
the table. California ranked
right in the middle when
you compare how much the
state spends per student
on education. No. 25 out of
50. The average state in
the country spends $9,138
per year per student.
California spends just
below that -- $8,486.

There are lots of
complaints and statistics in
this discussion, as you can

But one thing is almost
certain: the economy isn't
exactly turning a corner
toward prosperity. If the
cuts are minimized this year
and the pain "absorbed"
the issue doubtlessly will re-
emerge. Arun
Ramanathan, the executive
director of San Diego
Unified's government
relations efforts, said the
state faces another
looming crisis if layoffs like
this are realized this year
or in coming years.

It's one thing to layoff
young teachers and watch
what happens to the
schools with high
concentrations of young
teachers. But it's another
thing to layoff young
teachers in at a time when
a bevy of Baby Boomers
are starting to retire.

"It's a statewide issue,"
Ramanathan said. "In the
next two to six years a lot of
people are retiring. It
creates a problem when,
across the state, we're
laying off a lot of younger
teachers at the same time."

Some of the teachers I met
might have already moved
to find more job stability
after the pain of this year's
crisis is "absorbed" and the
Baby Boomers bulge
reaches retirement ranks.

By then, though, a place
like Jackson Elementary
might just have to start all
over, from the beginning.

Correction: The original
version of this piece had
the ratio of students to
administrators cited by the
teachers union backwards.
It has been changed.

Reader feedback
11. Lee wrote on April
10, 2008 2:29 PM:

"I taught for 35 years
and knew several
'Teachers of the Year',
and, although many
were good teachers,
many were also chosen
because of their
popularity or their ability
to promote themselves.
The very best teachers I
knew were never the
most popular, just the
most effective.

14. Ochoa wrote on April
10, 2008 8:13 PM:

"RE: ZOLLNER.... I also
teach at Lincoln, two rooms
down from Mr. Gomez. This
is a great piece and it's an
honor to work w/ an
extraordinary educator who
helps his students in and
out of the classroom. In
regards to the 10,000 pay-
cut and the comments
made by "ZOLLNER",
districts always make
exceptions to their "6 Year"
rule and honor all years of
service. The SDUSD did
this for Guillermo and the
reason why he had to take
a pay-cut is due to the fact
that the SDUSD ranks at
the very bottom in salaries
for teachers compared to
other school districts. A
teacher in Chula Vista w/
the exact same number of
years makes about 10,000
more than one in the San
Diego Unified School
district. The move was
obviously about
contributing to his
community, not his own

18. Mr. Middleton wrote
on April 12, 2008 11:47

"Lee is also correct in
his assessment of
"Teacher of the Year"
awards. The only awards
worth a salt are those
given by students,
colleagues and parents.
Any award for which one
has to nominate oneself,
complete a "process"
and/or self-promote is
nothing more than an
exercise in ego
masturbation and
therefore worthless. It's
resume-padding fodder."
SD Education Rprt Blog

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Larkins OAH Hearing
"Chula Vista Elementary
School District does not
choose teachers of the

South County's public school
districts have announced their
teachers of the year, identified
by their peers as among the best
in their field.

The kindergarten through
eighth-grade teachers are:

[1] Cristina Terrones, a fifth-grade teacher
at Harbison Elementary School in the
National School District...

[2] Juan Pedraja, an eighth-grade
teacher at San Ysidro Middle School in
the San Ysidro School District...

[3] Jose Chavira, a second-grade
bilingual teacher at Mendoza Elementary
School in South Bay Union School

Chula Vista Elementary School
District does not choose teachers
of the year.
Sweetwater Union High School
District has five teachers of
the year:

[1] Antonio Gutierrez, a chemistry
teacher at Sweetwater High School...

[2] Eric Mabrey, the music director at
Olympian High School...

[3] Cherylyn Sias, a social studies
teacher at Mar Vista High School...

[4] Marilyn Stutler, a seventh-grade
social studies teacher at Eastlake
Middle School..

[5]Jesus Ulloa-Higuera, an engineering
teacher at  Eastlake High School...

Typically, teachers on each
campus vote
[but not
always--see comment below]
a school's teacher of the year.
School districts then establish
committees that have chosen
this year's 44 district teachers
of the year...

[Maura Larkins' comment:
Chula Vista Elementary School
District's teachers of the year
have caused some
embarrassment to Lowell
Billings and the board.  

Castle Park Elementary the
school's winner was chosen for
several years by a small
committee.  The resultant
teachers of the year
(particularly Robin Donlan)
became involved in illegal
activities which cost the district
a great deal of money to cover
up, then the same teachers got
into a power struggle with the
district that put CVESD in the
uneasy position of forcibly
transferring teachers of the

I heard a teacher of the year at
Castle Park Elementary say, "I
don't have time to help kids
catch up."

See also the story of Guillermo
Gomez, about a teacher who
won county-wide as well as
district-wide at CVESD.]
No More Teachers of the
Year at CVESD
School districts
announce teacher of the
year honorees
By Chris Moran
San Diego Union-Tribune
May 9, 2009
CVESD and its teachers of the
year don't see eye to eye
Perris instructor named one of 12 semi-finalists for
state Teacher of the Year
By Rick Peoples, RivCo Office of Education,  Guest Contributor
January 6, 2011

Ruth Prystash, a special education teacher for the Riverside County Office of  
Education at the Rob Reiner Center in Perris, was one of 12 semi-finalists for
State Teacher of the Year.

Prystash was first selected as a Teacher of the Year for the Riverside County
Office of Education and was one of three teachers selected as Riverside County
Teachers of the Year last June.  Teachers from each of California’s 58 counties
were then submitted to compete for the five State Teacher of the Year honors. A
selection committee narrowed down the pool to semi-finalists and then chose five
to be State Teachers of the Year.

Prystash has been a teacher for 30 years, six at Rob Reiner.

She was a Special Education teacher in Orient, Ohio, San Diego, Lemon Grove,
Grand Terrace and Temecula. She has worked as an autism consultant, lead
teacher for the Reach Autism Program, and instructor at UCR before joining the
Riverside County Office of Education in their autism program.

She earned her bachelor’s degree at Stanford, and completed her graduate work
at Ohio State University and Point Loma Nazarene College in San Diego. She is a
volunteer for the Inland Empire Autism Society Social Group for Teens, the Story
Lady at Barnes and Noble, and a performer with the Blues Mothers. Nominators
said “Prystash founded Reach, a model autism program that has expanded to 28
sites across the county.  Ruth’s talents, abilities, and vision have served as a
foundation for the quality autism programs for which Riverside County has become
renowned. Her life is a testament to her beliefs in assisting special needs
students.”  More than 200 educators have visited her highly successful classroom.

Locally, the 2011 Riverside County Teachers of the Year will be honored along
with administrators, confidential and classified employees in May 2011 at the
Celebrating Educators event to be held in Riverside.
Shirley Bunn: "Teacher Of The Year" Suspended For
Offensive Comment, Telling Hispanic Student To "Go Back
To Mexico"
The Huffington Post   
Sara Gates

Looks like this two-time "Teacher of the Year" will not be in the running to win the
esteemed honor this year because of her derogatory comment to a Hispanic
student: "Go back to Mexico."

Instead, 63-year-old Texas math teacher Shirley Bunn is fighting to keep her job.

Bunn made the comment on Sept. 30 while distributing Title 1 forms to her eighth
grade students at Barnett Junior High School. Dallas-Fort Worth's Fox 4 reports
that a disruptive student requested a Spanish-language version of the form,
saying, "I'm Mexican. I'm Mexican."

According to public record, Bunn attempted to tell the student that he could retrieve
forms translated into Spanish from the main office, but the student continued to
repeat "I'm Mexican."

Bunn quickly responded, "[Then] go back to Mexico."

The school board placed Bunn on paid leave following the incident, until an
Independent Hearing Examiner could review the case.

Late Wednesday, the examiner, Jess Rickman III, recommended that the school
board allow Bunn to return to her post. In his 23-page opinion, Rickman determined
that the district did not provide sufficient grounds for termination.

"Under the circumstances when taken in the context of the moment and the lack of
intent for 'Go back to Mexico' to be a racially or nationality-based pejorative
remark, I find it was not a remark of an egregious nature," Rickman said, Fox 4

Since Rickman's opinion is just a recommendation, the school board could still
reject it and permanently terminate Bunn, who has taught at Barnett since 1999.

"It was almost instantaneous. I thought, 'God, I don't believe that came out of my
mouth,'" Bunn told The Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

"It was a very, very hard week, the end of six weeks. It was late in the day. It was a
Friday. We were on the third day of the first curriculum assessment and I knew it
wasn't going well. It was just an extremely bad day," Bunn said.

The school board is expected to decide Bunn’s fate before next month.
Teachers of the Year
New Jersey teacher voted best of 2011 accused of
sexual assault involving 15-year-old student
By Joshua Rhett Miller
September 04, 2012

A New Jersey high school teacher who was named one of the state’s best in 2011,
then arrested for having sex with a 15-year-old student, posted bail Tuesday,
authorities said.

Acting Essex County prosecutor Carolyn Murray said West Orange High School
teacher Erica DePalo, 33, of Montclair, was charged Friday with first-degree
aggravated sexual assault, second-degree sexual assault and endangering the
welfare of a child.

DePalo, who was named Essex County’s Teacher of the Year in 2011, allegedly
began a sexual relationship with the unidentified male in June and continued
sexual contact with him until late August.

The student was in DePalo’s honors English class, West Orange Detective Louis
Mignone said in a news release. DePalo also worked as the school's junior varsity
tennis coach, authorities said.

Judge Martin Cronin set bail at $100,000. DePalo had posted bail as of midday
Tuesday, but she had not yet been arraigned, officials at the Essex County
Prosecutor’s Office told FoxNews.com.

Attempts to reach DePalo on Tuesday were unsuccessful.
Jim O’Neill, interim superintendent of the West Orange School District, said DePalo
had been suspended indefinitely. Counselors will also be available to students, he

"The school district will cooperate with the prosecutor’s office in every way," O'Neill
said in a statement to FoxNews.com. "The West Orange School District prides itself
on being vested in the health, safety and welfare of our students."
San Diego Education Report
San Diego
Education Report
CVESD teachers/administrators of the year
chosen by San Diego Education Report

These administrators are being
recognized for working closely
with their teacher allies to
achieve impact within and among

Charlie Padilla

Principal at Rice, Feaster,
Parkview, and Tiffany
Elementary Schools

After a difficult start at Rice Elementary
resulted in student test scores going
down, Mr. Padilla was moved to Feaster
for a short time.  He learned that he
needed to do  observations of his
teachers, and to listen and talk to
teachers outside the ruling clique.  Charile
Padilla improved, and came into his own
as his school received a "Distinguished
School" award when he was principal of
Parkview Elementary.  Sadly, Mr. Padilla
disappointed and surprised everyone by
retiring in the middle of the school year in
December 2010.  He now works as a
supervisor for student teachers at USD.

Review Written Report on Burton C. Tiffany
Elementary School for the 2009-‘IO School
Year The Board reviewed Burton C. Tiffany
Elementary School’s Written report detailing
progress made in addressing the District
Strategic Goals of Literacy, Equity,
Technology, Safe and Supportive
Environment, and Collaboration for the
2009-10 school year.

Principal Charles Padilla was present to
answer questions.  Board Members thanked
Principal Padilla for his many years of
service to District students and
congratulated him on his retirement.
--Board Minutes Dec. 14, 2010

Monica Sorenson, Esq.


Former Asst. Supt.
Dennis Doyle*

These teachers are being
recognized for working closely with
their allies to achieve impact within
and among schools:

Andrea Glasser--Rice
Elementary, fifth grade Rice

Ms. Glasser belongs to California Dept. of
Education's Chula Vista Elementary School
District  Brokers of Expertise group along with
Maria Grabowski and Geraldine Arreaga.

Mimi (Mary Elizabeth) Carr, Esq.
second grade Rice Elementary
Meet the Staff - Lilian J. Rice Elementary School
www.cvesd.org, 26 April 2010
6/2/1999        Admitted to The State Bar of

Denise Finney--math resource
teacher at district office;
formerly at Rice Elementary
In 2007 Supt. Lowell Billings picked
Denise for a Rotary award at his club.  
Denise has clearly done a good job
working at the district office, and Mr.
Billings relied on her opinions in personnel
matters.  Later, he came to regret that reliance.

In 2008-2009, the staff worked with
Denise Finney, District Resource
Teacher, to implement the Gradual
Release of Responsibility Framework
and continue to strengthen the school focus of
Reading Comprehension. We closely monitored
growth for our targeted students as teachers
worked collaboratively to improve achievement for
all students.
--from Olympic View 2010-11
Accountability Report Card

AGENDA - Chula Vista Elementary School District
May 22, 2012 – For over a decade, research
studies of Mathematics education in high-
performing countries have pointed to the
conclusion that the curriculum in theUnited States
must become substantially more focused and
coherent in order to improve achievement for
students. To address this need, the District has
created resource materials and professional
development opportunities for teachers to provide
a more conceptually and problem-based learning
environment rather than only focusing on the
procedural understanding of mathematics.
ADDITIONAL DATA: Tonight, District Math
Resource Teacher Denise Finney will share
information on the resources and professional
development provided for District teachers.

Three-way tie:  

Connie Mack
Kellogg School Site Council (SSC)  Feb. 2011
Parents/Community  Staff
o  Debby Duran  0  Yanet Goldsmith
o  Gilda Elorriaga (DAC)  0  Carol Kawamoto
o  Pablo Kubilis  0  Connie Mack
o  William Perno  o  Lalaine Perez
o  Chris Shilling  o  Jacqueline Simeon

Feb. 2012
School Site Council (SSC)
• Debby Duran
• Gilda Elorriaga
• Sheryl Incharregui
• Sandra Perez
• Jeanette Sanchez
• Carol Kawamoto
• Connie Mack
• Chris Morrison
• Lalaine Perez
• Jacqueline Simeon

Shelley Rudd

Nikki Perez
Special recognition:

Former CVESD teacher/National School District principal Mary
Lou Montoya

Without the support and assistance of Mary Lou Montoya, none of the winners above
could have achieved what they did.

* Like Mr. Dennis M. Doyle, Mary Lou Montoya moved to
National School District for a job as a administrator.  She
worked closely with CVESD board member Bertha Lopez at
National School District and at CABE.
Bertha Lopez was
convicted of corruption.
San Diego County teacher of the year 2012 finalist arrested
for sex crimes

Terrance Smith was one of ten finalists for Teacher of the Year in San
Diego County this year.  The English teacher is accused of engaging in
sexual activity with a teen on school grounds.
2008 SDUSD Teacher of the
year finalists
Evaluating teachers
Awards, honors and prizes
Awards--go along to get along
Teacher of the year
Blog posts about awards
High performers/whistle-blowers
Incompetence and sabotage
Blog posts re incompetence
Whistle-blowers in education
Lying and Truth
Girl culture among teachers
Team dysfunction (SDER II site)
Motivated reasoning
Emotional maturity
Delusions of "normal" people
No good deed goes unpunished
Mental health
Ethics in education
Ethics in law, law schools
Cal Western ethics
Kevin Beiser, a teacher in the Sweetwater Union High School District and
county Math Teacher of the Year...

Scott Barnett Unplugged: School Board Prez Edition
By: Mario Koran
March 19, 2014

Early this month, San Diego Unified Trustee Scott Barnet surprised the public with a
midnight Facebook post announcing he wouldn’t run for re-election.

Now, just a few months before the June primary, Barnett appears bent on taking
school board president Kevin Beiser along with him.

Barnett called me up this week to give me a better idea of why he was endorsing Amy
Redding, who’s challenging Beiser. He sang Redding’s virtues – she’s smart, focused
and would put kids first, he said.

But then, Barnett torched his colleague – for 40 minutes straight. He said that over the
course of Beiser’s tenure he’s been too busy promoting himself to help other school
board members reshape San Diego Unified.

Here are some pieces of shrapnel from that conversation:

• “This guy goes to more parades and ribbon-cutting ceremonies than any other
politician I’ve ever met. He’s more interested in improving his image than he is in
helping us make the tough decisions that improve the district.”

• “Time and time again we’ve been abandoned by a school board member who’s gone
off to get himself nominated for an award.”

• “I’ve seen him run out in the hallway in the middle of a meeting to pacify the labor
union and tell them he’s on their side.”

• “In his heart, he truly cares about children. But without
exception he almost never acts on it.
I saw this in him as a
candidate — but I thought it would die down when he became a

Barnett’s penchant for going rogue and throwing bombs has been well documented.
But his sustained attack on a colleague is bold even for him.

Barnett bases part of his criticism on Beiser’s voting record. In February, Beiser told
LGBT weekly that he’s tirelessly advocated for preserving music and visual arts
programs in schools. He’s even won an award for his commitment to the arts.

Barnett says that Beiser’s votes contradict his image. He points to a vote in 2013 in
which Beiser voted against a policy that Barnett says could have saved art and music

The two politicians have often found themselves on opposite sides of votes, but they’
ve never been as openly critical of each other.

Barnett was speaking in the context of why he’s decided to back Redding against
Beiser in the coming primaries.

Redding, who works as a parent-volunteer full time, has a long track record serving on
district oversight committees and pushing for greater transparency on how the district
spends its money.

When I reached Beiser, he said he knew Barnett endorsed Redding, but seemed
surprised at the accusations his colleague leveled.

Beiser said his voting record clearly represents that children are his primary
motivation, and that the decisions he’s made in his board tenure helped the district
close the achievement gap and earn national recognition as a Broad Prize finalist.

“Those results I think speak volumes for the work I’ve done as a school board
member,” Beiser said.

Beiser has a lengthy list of endorsements even without Barnett’s blessing, from the
teacher’s union to the California Charter Schools Association.

Barnett said the endorsements point to the time Beiser has spent vote-seeking instead
of helping other school board members carry the burden.

“Look, we’re politicians,” said Barnett. “We’re insecure narcissists — we all have that
to a certain degree. But Beiser rises to a new level.”
“Officer of the Year”
Admits to Raping 20 Male
Immigrants, Not Charged
as Sex Offender

By Matt Agorist
February 17, 2015

Broward County, FL — A former
Florida police officer has admitted
to forcing undocumented
immigrants into having sex with him.

Jonathan Bleiweiss, 34, pleaded
guilty to an array of charges last
week, admitting to 14 counts of
armed false imprisonment, 15
counts of battery and four counts of
stalking. However, he avoided all of
the charges with “sex” in them.

Most likely due to his police officer
status, this former Broward Sheriff’s
deputy was given an insultingly
lenient plea deal. As part of that
deal, Bleiweiss did not face charges
of sexual battery, and as such will
not be required by the state of
Florida to register as a sex offender.

A group of approximately 20
undocumented immigrants alleged
that Bleiweiss, harassed them,
molested them during pat-downs,
and threatened them with
deportation if they refused to
perform sex acts.

Eerily enough, just after this officer
was named Employee of the Year
for his district, Bleiweiss told the
South Florida Blade newspaper
that early in his career one of his
supervisors taunted him by calling
him “sex offender,” for being openly

However, the label, now fitting, will
not be applied. Bleiweiss was
sentenced to five years in jail and
ten years of probation but avoided
the sex offender designation

Undocumented immigrant workers
are often targeted by unscrupulous
individuals as they have very little
recourse when trying to report
crimes committed against them,
because of their “illegal” status.
Bleiweiss likely chose this
vulnerable group of people to
violate and abuse, for this reason.

In the end, Bleiweiss was charged
with arbitrary battery charges
relating to patdowns he conducted
while on duty; nothing else.

Broward Public Defender Howard
Finkelstein called the outcome,
“shocking and shameful to the
whole county.”

The Sun-Sentinel reported on
another contrasting case that
played out in court on the same
day as Bleiweiss’ deal. Eric
Beasley, 25, a former high school
teacher from Broward, was
sentenced to 20 years in prison
after admitting to having a sexual
relationship with an underage
student, a 14-year-old girl.

Both men obviously abused their
positions of authority, and both
men victimized underage teens. But
only one of them did it to multiple
victims. Only one of them carries a
badge and a gun and throws
people in prison for the same
crimes he committed. And, only one
of them was able to get special
privileges for their depravity. The

The original investigation began in
April of 2009 after multiple
complaints were brought against
Bleiweiss. However, he was allowed
to stay on the job for several
months after. During those several
months, Bleiweiss racked up more
victims, including the underage

Finkelstein pointed out the double
standard, “If this had been a
teacher accused of sexually
assaulting a student, all it would
take is one complaint and they’d be
removed from the classroom and
charged…These cases show there
are two sets of standards — one
for police and another for the
general public.”

[Maura Larkins' comment:
Finkelstein apparently knows
nothing about how crime among
teachers--including Teachers of
the Year--is covered up.]