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Re: “My Picks for the TUSD School Board: Cam Juarez, Kristel Foster, Betts Putnam-Hidalgo

Mr. Safier writing this is pro time since you clearly can not see the facts. We parents are not "vocal critics." TUSD is not a "typical" low-performing urban district. TUSD has the potential to be amazing partnering with the UofA and PCC and Raytheon and bringing in parents and community instead of treating us like we are the problem because we expect better for our children. Many of us are highly educated and do more than observe casually like you do. We spend time with principals and teachers asking how to help and they tell us the same stories at every school. We need more resources, supplies, support, monitors, custodians, we have asked for help but the 12 at the top making $3million discourage complaints..........You sir, are a disgrace the any progressive agenda you claim. You sir are asking the community to vote greedy politicians to take, take, take away from our children.

You are like the social worker who tells the battered wife that "it's not so bad" "you shouldn't have made him hit you" "you shouldn't expect so much" "you don't deserve better" "try to understand he didn't mean it" "he's trying his best." You, Mr. Safier ignore the facts just like Mr. Trump. It is sad.

8 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Disappointed Parent on 10/13/2016 at 9:43 PM

Re: “As Acacia Prepares to Shutter, Chef Albert Hall Looks to the Viability of Fine Dining in Tucson

Sorry your restaurant had to close - such a difficult business. Have you thought of doing a cooking school? Market it to those of us 55+ who have lost the cooking spouse. We need to learn how to cook all over again. Women who don't know how to grill a salmon. Men who don't know how to make gravy. There's nothing like this in Tucson - there are a bunch of us women looking for classes all over the city. Retirees are free during weekdays... Just a thought

Posted by Linda Bretz on 10/13/2016 at 8:27 PM

Re: “The Skinny

Here's a link to today's update.

Make of it what you will, but it seems that all those new Republican voters aren't having much of an impact in Pennsylvania.

11 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by Skeptical on 10/13/2016 at 6:47 PM

Re: “The Skinny

What did I tell you Debbi?

6 likes, 12 dislikes
Posted by Rat T on 10/13/2016 at 5:20 PM

Re: “My Picks for the TUSD School Board: Cam Juarez, Kristel Foster, Betts Putnam-Hidalgo

While this is a letter from the Whistleblowers, it is written from the eyes of a few of our members who are all TUSD principals, however, it is written in the first person point of view.

I received a call from Kristel Foster’s campaign asking that I vote for her. I explained that no one in our home would vote for her, nor would relatives, friends or neighbors. I thanked the campaign worked and hung up.  The call alerted me to the fact that Foster is running a pretty good ground game and that more people need to become aware of just how inept she really is as a governing board member. More than inept, I believe Foster is dangerous. For four years Foster has woven herself into the Democratic Party befriending and convincing elected officials that she is near the savior of TUSD students. She is patronizing in her stand but few recognize it. What she has done is save Sanchez—over and over again.

The kids who attend TUSD are not even in Foster’s equation of serving on the Board.  Although I remain a staunch Democrat, I have distanced myself from the Party’s leadership for its lack of vetting candidates, such as Foster and Cam Juarez, and its constant concessions to the Grijalvas. Many of the Party’s endorsements are dictated by Raul Grijalva. Insiders have shared this fact with many and are questioning the wisdom in giving him such power. His consistent drunken state of functioning, it seems, has reached a very high level of attention in “D.C.” politics and even those in his own Hispanic Caucus have begun to chant, “enough is enough!”  Pima County politics will change greatly over the next two years but for now Foster is enjoying the endorsements of many who do not really give a damn about TUSD, its students, its instructional leaders, its teachers or its community.

What we ask of you is that you begin the change NOW by eradicating the TUSD Board of Foster, not for one or two valid reasons but for many, many reasons.
Foster brags about her first bid for the Board and says that it was inspired out of the MAS issues that faced the District four years ago. She does this only while in front of a Latino audiences while she attempts to convince the group that she is one of them. This is just more of her privileged patronage. It is obnoxiously offensive. Most of the political ploys she has learned have been from imitating HT Sanchez’ behavior. As she has supported his every move, she has learned his style of politics which is to demean and punish any who stand in his way while at the same time deflecting any responsibility for his own actions. The Sanchez administration, along with his bloc of 3 (Juarez, Foster and Grijalva), have become best known for blaming, deflecting, and retaliating. Aside from the obvious problem that this type of leadership accomplishes little, this style of non-leadership also has cost tax payers millions of dollars in wasteful legal battles against the desegregation parties; in changing desegregation legal counsel three times in the course of three years; and in the extremely high turn-over rates at the top level of Sanchez’ cabinet and at the principal and teacher level. Millions of dollars in training has virtually walked out of the door due to the incompetent manner in which TUSD is managed. People leave due to the work environment. There is no central support for school principals and teachers. The environment is permeated with fear and everyone, including parents, are scared to expose problems or offer remedies due to the obvious overt or/and covert Sanchez retaliation. Foster and her cohorts gave Sanchez a 25% salary increase which has put him at about half a million dollars per year. This is a ridiculous amount of our tax money to pay for someone who walked into this District with about 3 months of interim superintendent experience.

Anyone who has watched the Board since HT Sanchez was hired has likely seen Foster develop into a rude, mean, sarcastic, underhanded Board member. Many of her comments are “jabs” at Mike Hicks or Mark Stegeman, although her jabs have been directed to many.   Stegeman has particularly been the subject of one nasty jab after another at the various candidate forums. She even took jabs at him during the NAACP dinner last weekend. Foster and Grijalava whisper incessantly during Board meetings forgetting that they can be heard by those tuned in via video stream. This is just more of Foster’s privileged mind-set being acted out. It is though she is saying, “I can say and do anything I please…and then convince you that it is good for you.”
Communication from the District is all “spin” and there is a Sanchez regime-code that no one is to say a word that would make TUSD look bad in the media. This results in gagging most of us or punishing us when the truth is exposed. Foster fosters this behavior. Look at what happened to Chuck Bermudez. Look at what happened to Ms. Aho.

Principals suffer from discipline-policy whip lash. Principals have been given one contradictory Sanchez directive after another and then are blamed for the end-result, which is a District that has failed in keeping our schools safe based on its top leader telling principals to essentially cheat for the sake of getting out of the court order. In response to the crisis that Sanchez has created, he is now going to the other extreme and we are being told to suspend for the first fight and long-term suspend for the second fight. The inconsistent policy has confused everyone!

Foster condones all Sanchez does, even if it means the total destruction of magnet schools, especially magnet schools on the south and west side. Many of these schools had their budgets cut by the administration last year (reinstated only due to the court order), have been riddled with substitutes and long-term substitutes, and this year Ochoa and Utterback Magnet Schools have both been impacted by the absence of a site administrator. Each school has had interim principals since the beginning of the school year. Foster has a hell of a lot of nerve in trying to sell stability as the key reason for wanting to re-seat herself on the Board. There is no stability in TUSD right now and this must change. Getting rid of those who have created havoc is essential.  
And the budget. Well, it is all a mystery. Principals do not build their own budgets. Our budgets are drawn up by Karla Soto who is a Sanchez loyalist and a non-educator. Each allocated teacher is budgeted at a pretty high level inclusive of benefits ($55-65,000). But when schools have numerous substitutes the unspent portion of the padded budget winds up in back in the 1010 budget. I would like to know what this adds up to at the end of the fiscal year. The money that should have been spent on the schools is not what it appears in the budget. Schools are getting cheated (again).

It is a mistake to mix either Foster and/or Juarez in with anyone else who is running for the Board through your vote. If either of these incumbents are elected, they will assume the role of continuing to protect Sanchez and every action they have taken over their first depressing term. There will be constant tension on the Board. Foster has professed to be the only educator on the Board but as a so-called educator, she has ignored the support that is needed directly at our schools, the support that teachers must have (not TEA) and critical curriculum issues.

One example of her neglect or ignorance is the horrific audit results on dual language programs within the District. Let me remind you that at Sunnyside Foster is a language acquisition specialist which implies that she should know that dual language teachers should be assessing their students in both English and Spanish as well as using research based strategies in their instruction. Wrong! What has actually happened is that the dual language audit which was issued last spring was immediately buried. (I got a bootlegged copy from someone within the Language Acquisition Department and had to swear never to disclose who gave it to me because s/he would lose their job. It is a public document for God’s sake!) The audit was never provided to the Board to discuss during a public meeting and the recommendations provided in the audit have been ignored. At a recent forum, Foster said that the recommendations in the audit could not be implemented based on state law. She is wrong. Again. Any school that has a dual language program could implement most of the recommendations. The article that appeared in the Arizona Daily Star on June 6th elaborates more on the audit.

How could a so-called specialist in the area of dual language not have known that TUSD dual language programs are so very weak? And after she officially found out about the program’s weaknesses, why has she done NOTHING to remedy the situation? Why hasn’t the audit been discussed during a public meeting? These are all, of course, rhetorical questions. We know that the audit has been hidden (at least until after the election) because TUSD suppresses anything that is “bad news.”  We also know that Foster put herself before the needs of students by helping to suppress the audit. And finally, it is obvious that Foster is not an expert in the area of dual language instruction. If she were, she would have red-flagged the problems long before the audit was issued.
You have three votes to seat those seeking to serve us on the TUSD Board. Foster has been irresponsible. She has been a rubber stamp. She has been an elitist. A vote for Foster is a vote for more confusion; more submerging of the facts; less support to school principals and teachers; less support for the implementation of the court order; more retaliation; more fear; and a sure way for TUSD to crumble before our eyes. Your three votes are critical in beginning to change the culture of TUSD. Do you really want more of the same? The Whistleblowers have endorsed three candidates which you can read about at:
However, it is important for every voter to realize the importance of NOT voting for Kristel Foster. She has been a toxic, self-serving Board member.
David Safier, a blogger with the Tucson Weekly recently endorsed her and Cam Juarez arguing that they each have done a great job. His rationale for his support has to do with stability of the District, his support for his friend HT Sanchez, along with stating that TUSD is no better or worse than most large inner city school districts. All of his rationale is despicable, insulting and racist.
Do not let Safier, TEA, or elected officials that do not live the TUSD life and who have freely given their endorsement to Foster away, fool you. It is time to drain this TUSD Board swamp; dry it up and bring in those who will actually serve our students!
Once Again
Thanks to Three Sonorans for publishing every single one of our letters! We appreciate greatly that the Arizona Daily Independent publishes many of our letters and/or references them within their own posts, from time to time. Additionally, continue to acknowledge an organization that is also working very hard to expose the facts about TUSD: TUSDKidsFirst, which also has made reference to our letters, which we appreciate. Check the organization out at:

12 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Drain the TUSD Swamp- RID TUSD Board of the Dangers of Kristel F on 10/13/2016 at 4:07 PM

Re: “The Skinny

However, there is a difference between registering as a Republican and actually voting for the Republican candidate. It's not like they give you a ballot with only the Republican candidates. Same goes for those Republicans that have changed their affiliation to the Democratic party-just because they change doesn't mean they'll actually vote a Democratic slate.

These reports are more about making people feel better about themselves than any realistic/provable argument about candidate support.

10 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by Not a Rancho Snob on 10/13/2016 at 4:03 PM

Re: “Food and Survival

Abuse rates of SNAP have been studied and are below 5%. But go ahead and starve granny cause there are some coke heads out there getting a free ride. That's totally American...

22 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by desertrat on 10/13/2016 at 3:26 PM

Re: “Police Dispatch

Hey Gonzo!:

3 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by AZ/DC! on 10/13/2016 at 3:16 PM

Re: “The Skinny

Debbie L, I don't know if this is where you saw the PA story but I got it from CBS. You can post links for these guys all day long and they will find a way to deny the facts.

7 likes, 12 dislikes
Posted by Rat T on 10/13/2016 at 2:26 PM

Re: “The Skinny


The Clinton Foundation’s largest single charitable grant to an organization not founded by the Clinton Foundation or managed by one of its board members was a $700,000 check to the J/P Haitian Relief Organization, a non-profit founded by actor Sean Penn. That organization reportedly spent more than $126,000 on first-class flights for the actor. Other charitable grants from the Clinton Foundation included $200,000 for the Tiger Woods Foundation and $37,500 for the Sesame Workshop in New York City.

The Clinton Foundation spent more on rent and office supplies than it did on program delivery. And when it gave grants, it gave them to other non-profits run by Clinton cronies...

But it's understandable. Most people believe if their favorite media didn't report on it, it didn't happen. It is money from a terrorist supporting country. Ever heard of the Patriot Act or Homeland Security?

7 likes, 12 dislikes
Posted by Rat T on 10/13/2016 at 1:54 PM

Re: “The Skinny

RatT: Good for Qatar! Giving, as it did, to one of the top-rated, most ethical foundations in the world!

11 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Qatardonation on 10/13/2016 at 1:25 PM

Re: “The Skinny

DebbieL? Do you have a link that shows that "PA had 100,000 Democrats switch to Republican Party?"

If that's true, it surely doesn't show in today's's projection of Hillary taking Pennsylvania by 89.5 to Trump's 10.5. And the national election by 87.3 to 12.7.


14 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by Skepical on 10/13/2016 at 1:21 PM

Re: “The Skinny

New emails released by WikiLeaks in connection with its dump of John Podesta’s email server indicate that Qatar, an Islamist state in the Persian gulf, gave former President Bill Clinton a check for $1 million for his birthday.

Read more:

How cozy is that? Speak Up America!

7 likes, 15 dislikes
Posted by Rat T on 10/13/2016 at 11:30 AM

Re: “The Skinny

Trump talked about it and they want to hang him. Bill Clinton did it and the media gives him a pass. Just saying. I just heard Mrs. Obama talking about she doesn't associate like men who talk like that. I guess she went to bed early when her husband had rappers entertain at the White House.

6 likes, 9 dislikes
Posted by CW13 on 10/13/2016 at 11:18 AM

Re: “Danehy

"People who want viable third-party candidates should come up with viable third parties."

Otherwise we are voting for the most deceptive Clinton yet? That makes no sense.

The country was in trouble any way? What a campaign theme.

12 likes, 13 dislikes
Posted by Dave Nelson on 10/13/2016 at 10:44 AM

Re: “Danehy

Agreed that the Green Party has failed to become a viable force in electoral politics at the national level, although it has succeeded in some smaller jurisdictions around the country. However, your flippant dismissal of Jill Stein's arrest warrant bears closer inspection.

She was arrested at Standing Rock, in solidarity with hundreds of tribal nations that have gathered to resist the domination of the fossil fuel industry and the damage that its stupid, dangerous, and fundamentally unnecessary pipeline would do to their water, health, cultural integrity, sacred ground, and ancestral graves.

If more politicians had the kind of spine Jill Stein has--you know, integrity, utilitarian values, commitment to principle, courage to stand up to corporations rather than kowtowing to them, all the things Billary Clinton lacks--then we would not be in the mess we are in.

You don't have to vote for Ms. Stein, but you could at least show her the respect she has earned.

9 likes, 9 dislikes
Posted by skinnyman on 10/13/2016 at 10:28 AM

Re: “Food and Survival

Being a fair and "complete story" journalist, I'm sure you will include in your series the many abuses and downright criminal uses of SNAP. Just a few are: selling the SNAP card for about 50 cents on the dollar giving the buyer the pin, as ID is rarely checked. Buying high cost and brand name items with SNAP (a lot of times the card holder will cover the front of the card with masking tape so as others in the grocery line won't see the card logo), and the worst abuse being an unscrupulous shop owner scanning a legal nutritious item such as donuts but substituting booze/cigarettes etc. These are just a few abuses, but I'm sure more will be covered in the fair and balanced continuation of this story. Ya

0 likes, 22 dislikes
Posted by mrbigshotno1 on 10/13/2016 at 10:27 AM

Re: “The Skinny

No, that is reality. Sure HRC is far from being the ideal candidate, but when she's up against the Chump, it's like comparing his rotten apple to her orange.

If you actually read all of what I typed instead of what displeased you, maybe, just maybe, you would understand for a change.

I wasn't posting to list HRC's solutions. I was pointing out that Chump's solutions, as everything else about him, are nonsense. Lift your head up off the desk, wipe the drool off your chin and pay attention in class. If you start now, you might possibly pass this course with a D minus.

13 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by AZ/DC! on 10/13/2016 at 10:19 AM

Re: “The Skinny

No. That's your reality. But don't fool yourself. You failed to list Hillary's solutions.

So has she.

Here are some of them.

6 likes, 16 dislikes
Posted by Debbi L on 10/13/2016 at 10:07 AM

Re: “Creative Community

There must be some growth. You mentioned that Tucson was the 5th poorest city in every other comment you've posted up until recently. Whether you like it or not, that's growth. You should just move away if you don't feel the growth is happening quickly enough. I understand that the North Pole is hiring; Santa is looking for elves with negative attitude. That would be the perfect job for you. You can package the coal that is distributed to those crabby little children that remind you of yourself. Merry Christmas Scrooge!

12 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by AZ/DC! on 10/13/2016 at 10:07 AM

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