March 13, 2019 CUSD BOT Meeting Agenda Item #20 PRESENTATION – UPDATE ON GIFTED AND TALENTED EDUCATION 

Board Agenda at page 340

CUSDWatch Comment

A school District that truly has "an Unwavering Commitment to Student Success" should want to raise up as many students as possible.

From the Districts own data they could be catching 11% more of their highest achieving students and provide them with greater opportunity to reach their academic potential. 

Instead- Staffs recommendation is to continue to exclude these 11% of students from accelerated class placement and to limit their educational opportunity. The reasons Staff gives are outlined below:

That seams like a Federal Civil Rights Violation to me.

The District has an obligation to provide every student with "equal opportunity to reach their academic potential". Therefore, CUSD cannot simply identify a group of students and then intentionally deny that particular group of students the education that CUSD is constitutionally obligated to provide. 

CUSD is making a financial choice not to fund programs for high achieving students. In 2013 the State of California implemented the Local Control Funding Law. Under "Local Control" the California Department of Education eliminated most categorical programs (including the GATE program, and allowed individual school districts to decide how to spend their education dollars. 

District Staff, without Board Approval, made the choice to eliminate funding for GATE and accelerated programing for high achieving students. This was documented in a November 16, 2016 CUSD Board Meeting where Superintendent Vital stated on the record that District Staff; without Board approval; has, since 2012-13 defunded GATE and reduced most accelerated programing for high achieving students. 

STATEMENT FROM SUPERINTENDENT VITAL

November 16, 2016 CUSD BOT Meeting Agenda Item #31 page 463

Board Audio at 190.24 (3 hours 10 minutes and 24 seconds)

District staff would rather save money for employee compensation increases rather than fund programing for their highest achieving students.

The message to parents of these 11% of now identified students should be to pull their children out of the Capistrano Unified School District and find a district that makes a commitment to meet the needs of its best and brightest students rather than give across the board compensation increases to employees that total over $150 million over the past 5 years while they pretend to have...

"an Unwavering Commitment to Student Success"

Superintendent Kirstin Vital Salary Pension & Benefit Increases of $69,122 

Dr. Susan Holiday Salary Pension & Benefit Increases of $75,075 

 

Average compensation for CUSD  Teachers has risen from $95,673 to 

CUSD Board Actions Regarding GATE and Accelerated Programs for high achieving students.

January 25, 2016 CUSD BOT Meeting Agenda Item #20 page 530 Audio at 1:15:50 (CUSDWatch Article: Hanover Research Partnership)

November 16, 2016 CUSD BOT Meeting Agenda Item #31 page 463 Audio at 2:49:13 (CUSDWatch Article: GATE PROGRAM)

November 8, 2017 CUSD BOT Meeting Agenda Item #27 page 756 Audio at 2:26:08 (CUSDWatch Article: Gifted and Talented Education Program Review)

September 12, 2018 CUSD BOT Meeting Agenda Item #30 page 715 Audio at 2:27:49

October 10, 2018 CUSD BOT Meeting Agenda Item #18 page 342 Audio at None the Item was Passed on the Consent Calendar without Discussion. (CUSDWatch Article: Gifted and Talented Education Program)