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Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

You ought to be reality based if you expect to get the best outcomes for your children. The reality is, other commenters have mentioned, no favors closing schools. However, the bleeding hasn't stopped for TUSD, it has only slowed. TUSD is still shrinking about a school a year with no end in sight. Carefully synchronizing school closures with retirements at the principal level to keep the trauma of leadership changes to a minimum is the way to go. The only way to end the bleeding is getting those excellent ratings up from the low 30's into the 70's - then, you could open some of these closed schools and help make Tucson an economic magnet.

Posted by on 10/26/2016 at 11:44 AM

Re: “Cinema Clips: A Man Called Ove

The book of the same title is also a delight. I look forward to seeing this.

Posted by Da Coach on 10/26/2016 at 7:59 AM

Re: “In the Flesh: Howe Gelb's 60th B-day Bash at the Rialto Theater

Fucking awesome. I wanted so much to go to this show, but Blofeld foiled my plans...again.

Posted by Gonzo Sorcrachi on 10/26/2016 at 7:45 AM

Re: “Cinema Clips: A Man Called Ove

I really want to see this.

Posted by Gonzo Sorcrachi on 10/26/2016 at 7:40 AM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Betts' Jewish Problem remains. While has done many good things, she has also:

1. Publically endorsed a campaign with Holocaust-denier/Holocaust-minimizer Norman Finkelstein, the author who used his parent's survival in the Nazi Holocaust to develop the idea of a Jewish-controlled "Holocaust Industry", which David Duke regularly promotes.

"Whereas hard-core deniers posit that the Holocaust is fiction...Finkelstein accepts that the mass murders did occur, but then joins the deniers in claims that Jews are collectively abusing this history for evil purposes." - Jewish Virtual Library

2. Participated in an event using the IPMN "Steadfast Hope" curriculum. Dexter Van Zile from Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) reported extensively on the "Steadfast Hope Curriculum" as full of lies, and supportive of terror. The JCPA (nationwide umbrella organization for bi-partisan Jewish Community Relations Councils) condemned the IPMN as antisemitic. The JCPA's Ethan Felson conducted a training in Tucson showing the IPMN to regularly invoke racist, antisemitic, tropes, including attacks on President Obama as a "tool of the Jews".

3. Publically expressed solidarity with John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, authors who allege that the US government is controlled by pro-Israel lobbyists.

4. Picketed The Jewish Festival at the Tucson Jewish Community Center, demonizing Jews and Israel and frightening preschool children. (I was the staff photographer who took photos of her picketing.)

5. Self-identified as a member of Women In Black, an organization that is viewed by many as crossing the line between being anti-occupation and demonizing Israel and holding Israel disproportionately responsible for the conflict.


3 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by MJ on 10/26/2016 at 7:21 AM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

I hope after Foster and Juarez are defeated in the upcoming elections "Guardians" will hang up her dream catcher and retire from these comment streams.

It is astounding the persistence, over the course of three years, of such a naive understanding of the district. Juarez, Foster, and Sanchez could do ANYTHING and she would not stop promoting them.

Bulletin from the real world, Guardians: they lied about enrollment figures in 2014. They are no doubt lying about enrollment figures in 2016. That's the sort of thing people who do not believe they have any obligation to tell the public the truth do: when it benefits them, they give false information.

There is NO WAY that the enrollment declines have stopped. Anyone who has lived in the reality of what has ACTUALLY been going on in TUSD schools for the last three years (instead of in Dream Catcher Land) knows that the message that enrollment declines have finally stopped under Sanchez's leadership is a bold-faced LIE.

We need leaders on this Board who are willing to accept responsibility for telling the public and parents with children enrolled in these schools the TRUTH. It is a necessary pre-condition for any kind of constructive improvement in the district's operations, and a necessary pre-condition for running a successful bond campaign. The electorate is not stupid: it will not vote more funding into the hands of chronic liars.

13 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by TUSD needs HONEST leadership. on 10/26/2016 at 6:40 AM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Thank you David. I am so glad TUSD has stopped the trend of students' leaving and are holding steady in their enrollment. We need candidates who look forward to continual improvement of TUSD for the students benefit rather than those who really want to see TUSD closed. That is the bottom line. Vote for Cam Juarez and Kristel Foster.

2 likes, 18 dislikes
Posted by Guardians on 10/26/2016 at 5:22 AM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Thank you David. I am so glad TUSD has stopped the trend of student's leaving and are holding steady in their enrollment. We need candidates who look forward to continual improvement rather than those who really want to see TUSD closed. That is the bottom line. Vote for Cam Juarez and Kristel Foster.

2 likes, 18 dislikes
Posted by Guardians on 10/26/2016 at 5:22 AM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Rachael Sedgwick - "Whoever is putting out the signs..."

If you're that naive you haven't got what it takes to take on the Grijalva's. And if you know and just won't say it, even worse.

8 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by What, Again on 10/26/2016 at 5:13 AM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

The Superintendent is responsible for implementation, and implementation was fundamentally flawed when it came to closing schools in TUSD. The Gibson Operational Efficiency Audit makes sense--it also makes more than 60 different recommendations, most of which have nothing to do with closing schools. Yes, the Audit makes a very persuasive argument that there are too many old buildings in TUSD that do not serve the students well--but that is largely because there are not enough students to fill the buildings. As such, the Audit makes clear that declining enrollment is the single biggest issue facing TUSD. The second biggest problem in TUSD, according to the Audit, is poor management, which of course results in lower enrollment.

Supt. Sanchez and his team are responsible for management. The board is only responsible as far as it has allowed the Superintendent to manage TUSD as he has, unchecked. Any member of the school board who is not alarmed by the community's cries, who does not heed our calls to better govern the Supt., needs to go. It is clear to the entire community that there are three members on the TUSD governing board who allow the Supt. to do as he pleases. They praise him for the job he has done. Now it is up to us, the community, to stand together and let them know that we disagree. We don't have to yell at them anymore--they don't seem to have been listening anyway. Note to self: They get it. Now it's time to vote.

This article, the street signs calling for the ousting of our school board members, the bad blood, its all just making TUSD worse. This comments section is evidence--this war is making people want to leave. It has to stop. Whoever is putting out the signs may claim that they care about TUSD, but their actions are hurting this district. If they really want to help the schools, they should invest their money toward spreading goodwill for a bond election so that we can increase the budget to pay for the buildings that everyone wants so badly to keep open.

No one wants to close schools. But if we don't stop this fight, families will just keep leaving, and there will be no choice. We can make this district great. But we have to work together. Tucson is a wonderful city, and TUSD has some great schools. They can all be great. We have to have faith, vote for school board candidates who will not blindly support the Superintendent, and smile! We got this.

9 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by Rachael Sedgwick on 10/25/2016 at 8:47 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

A letter written at leisure can obviously provide more detail than a one-minute timed response at a forum, especially on an issue as complicated as school closures. It does not seem reasonable to characterize those differences as a contradiction. I have stated my views on this issue many times over the last several years, and neither the forum nor the letter contained any changes.

12 likes, 10 dislikes
Posted by Mark Stegeman on 10/25/2016 at 8:37 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

David Safier,

Perhaps you should have remained a retired English teacher. Your coverage is so compromised by your web of alliances and undisclosed biases that I honestly no longer bother to read you. I just read the comments. At least they're sincere. And it wouldn't even matter, except that in this space the Weekly could actually post real reporting on these critical issues. Instead, we get, well, whatever it is that you do, on behalf of whomever you do it for.

19 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Off Ox on 10/25/2016 at 8:36 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Stegeman? Wouldn't vote for him if he was the only candidate running. The district needs him to be voted out together with Juarez and Foster.

The slate with the greatest likelihood of changing the configuration of the board in a constructive way is Putnam-Hidalgo, Sedgwick -- and Rustand for lack of a better alternative. Perhaps Rustand's SALC connections will be helpful in some respects, but we certainly don't want him forming a threesome with Hicks and Stegeman on some of the issues that will come before this Board. He is a "prevent white flight by giving parents in affluent schools what they want" sort of thinker, a Fruchthendler parent, and someone who wants the Fruchthendler-Sabino direct feed created in spite of the fact that the plan has been twice rejected (and rightly so) by the desegregation authority.

10 likes, 9 dislikes
Posted by You lose credibility in promoting Stegeman. on 10/25/2016 at 8:30 PM

Re: “Hell Yes! The 2016 Tucson Weekly Endorsements

In the year 2016, no one under the age of 75 should oppose marijuana legalization. Baby boomers, Generation X-ers, and the Millennials have no excuse to believe in the reefer madness propaganda used to keep marijuana illegal, in part of a war on drugs that is authoritarian, racist, and waged unevenly against poor and working class Americans. It is overdue to end!

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Joseph Benjamin on 10/25/2016 at 7:39 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Sinking ship, you are so correct. The current board is self serving and has their own agenda that does not include out children. As the sign says the TUSD Kids should come First. All I can say is:



19 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by Now is the time on 10/25/2016 at 7:37 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

TUSD is like this: a sinking ship where the crew and captain (and investors with whom the crew and captain are communicating remotely) are committed to a program of concealing the conspicuous holes in the hull, with water rushing in, from the passengers, lest the passengers run for the lifeboats and demand a refund on what they paid for their tickets. The crew and captain (central admin and Board) and investors (Pima County Democrats) are hoping not to lose those fares (per pupil funding which the Board and admin allocate in part to keep the local political machine running) together with the passengers. Crew, captain, and investors could care less about the fate of the passengers. All they care about is retaining the fares.

And, as was said above, they LIE and LIE and LIE, shamelessly, relentlessly, systematically, with total abandon. I doubt new Board members will fix the problem, but some are better than others, and Putnam-Hidalgo is, in my humble opinion, the most well-informed and the toughest. She will need both of those qualities, if she has the misfortunate to be elected to that Board.

24 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Can a new captain save a sinking ship? on 10/25/2016 at 7:25 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

It's also important to note that public district schools are supposed to be TRANSPARENT. When they make decisions, the basis for those decisions should be made clear to the public. This apparently was not done with the last round of school closures in 2013, cf. the Three Sonorans post linked by the commenter above, and Putnam-Hidalgo's apt remark at the end of her remarks in Call to the Audience: "Whatever that information is, we need it." Indeed. That could be said on any number of topics in TUSD, where the perpetual cloud of smoke blown to conceal what is actually going on is always, on every subject, thick as tar.

What Putnam-Hidalgo said at the end of that speech could be a fine motto for the project of parent advocacy in TUSD: "Whatever that information is, we need it." The first part, "Whatever that information is" accurately reflects that TUSD tells you so little you don't even know the shape of the beast you should be looking for, and the second part, tragically, reflects the fact that what TUSD is withholding is information relevant to parents being able to make informed decisions about their children's educations, their health, and their wellbeing.

30 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by "Whatever that information is, we need it." on 10/25/2016 at 7:23 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Thanks, Morales, and thanks for the excellent summary with the clip of Putnam-Hidalgo speaking about school closures at a Board meeting a few years ago:\

The fact is, David Safier, when you have candidates who say one thing and then "on the basis of new information they've received since joining the Board," do another, you never know WHAT you're going to get from them. Closed schools? Yes, though they've said they're opposed to closures. Outsourcing? Yes, they outsourced subs, though if you listened to Foster's rhetoric at the end of the League of Women Voters debate, you would think outsourcing ANYTHING would be the very last thing she would think of doing. Failing to implement the Strategic Plan? You bet, in spades, though they brag of its implementation. I could sit here for much longer than I am willing to give to this comment stream, listing ways that their actions in office have been the opposite of the commitments they have very clearly SAID that they have.

They are LIARS, and YOU, David Safier, are a chronic LIAR. For three long years you have spewed out useless commentary whose Truth value, is, as they say "Less Than Zero." So how dare you use the word "dishonest" in your last sentence of this piece? People who can't manage honesty themselves or require it of the candidates they endorse have no right to call others "dishonest."

29 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Hard to know what they can be expected to do when they LIE on 10/25/2016 at 6:40 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Listen to Cam supporting school closures on the Buckmaster Show here, but don't let the facts get in your way...

28 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Three Sonorans on 10/25/2016 at 5:43 PM

Re: “Which TUSD Board Candidates Favor Closing More Schools?

Close schools and use the money to increase teachers pay. Keep the good ones toss the junk. You could also eliminate many administration level jobs that are completely unnecessary. Freeze and reduce pensions. Sell the buses and put computers in the classrooms.

TUSD is fixable, but this may be our last chance. It's headed for collapse as can be seen by the traffic jams at charter schools as the parents have fled TUSD.

14 likes, 11 dislikes
Posted by Sing Us A Song You're The Piano Man on 10/25/2016 at 4:51 PM

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