To: The Tucson Community- 29th Open Letter
From: Whistleblowers– Comprised of a Large Group of Extremely Concerned TUSD Administrators, Teachers, Retired Administrators and Teachers, Parents, Grandparents- Growing with Each and Every Letter
Subject: The Arrogance and Incompetency of Kristel Foster and Cam Juarez and the Corrupt Greed of HT Sanchez
Foster and Juarez Campaigning at TUSD Sponsored Conference & Taking Credit For Culturally Relevant Courses by Doing NOTHING
This month Kristel Foster attended the Tucson Unified School District Summer Institute for Culturally Responsive Education. She and her peer, Cam Juarez, both made a pitch for their re-election during the desegregation-funded event, which was incredibly distasteful and a violation of state law
(A.R.S. § 15-511: Use of school district or charter school resources or employees to influence elections; prohibition; civil penalty; definition – A. A person acting on behalf of a school district or a person who aids another person acting on behalf of a school district shall not use school district or charter school personnel, equipment, materials, buildings or other resources for the purpose of influencing the outcomes of elections. Notwithstanding this section, a school district may distribute informational reports on a proposed budget override election as provided).
At the event, both Kristel and Cam said that they were responsible for the District having Mexican American Culturally Relevant Courses in the District and that they needed to be reelected to return to their seats so that they could continue to support CRC courses.
A knowledgeable attendee questioned their statements and asked if it was not the desegregation court order that was responsible for the CRCs in the District. Both of them begrudgingly agreed. Our research found that Foster and Juarez were NOT on the Board when the drafted Unitary Plan which had contained within it Mexican American and African American CRCs was already in existence.
The outpouring of feedback from the community during the Special Master’s forums during the fall of 2012 which were held to obtain feedback on the drafted USP asked for a director level position to oversee the department, which took place.
The community also asked that the USP and specifically Mexican American CRCs be supported. Foster and Juarez had NOTHING to do with the development of USP, the CRCs and have actually worked against it since they have joined the Board to create a dysfunctional Board majority. Foster and Juarez did support the USP once on the Board but that was short-lived.
Any credit for the CRCs should be given to the MAS community (of which Kristel Foster only pretended to be a part). It was the MAS community who supported those involved in the desegregation case who actually fought to have Mexican American CRCs made part of the desegregation court order. It is hypocrisy at its height to have Foster and Juarez take any credit for the CRCs.
No one who attended the Summer Institute is willing to file a complaint with the AG to report the campaign wrongdoings due to what has become blatant retaliation from HT which is imposed on anyone who even whispers disagreement with him or HIS Board members. However, many of us are more than willing to testify if an investigation takes place. The attendance roster is public information.
HT Sanchez and his gruesome Board majority have become so arrogant that they really do not think twice about breeching any ethical and/or legal boundary. HT’s greed and manipulation of his cheerleader squad of three on the Board has made him the highest paid superintendent at almost half a million dollars a year in Arizona. All four of them are disgraceful. HT’s self evaluation again went through without a wrinkle and again, his pocket is lined by three enormous fools and at the expense of kids and taxpayers. HT exemplifies GREED; a sin in any book.
Kristel Foster LIES on the Campaign Trail and Has Proven to NOT to Be a Specialist in the Area of Dual Language
Anyone in the education field is able to discern the distinction between a teacher- a real teacher- who is assigned to a classroom and who has students assigned to her/him as opposed to someone who works within a central administration department as a “specialist” and is assigned to support specific schools within a school district.
Kristel Foster is not a real classroom teacher, she is assigned to a central administration department at Sunnyside and she is assigned specific schools to which she is SUPPOSED to provide support. Her title at Sunnyside is “language acquisition program specialist.”
Her reputation at Sunnyside is not good. What a surprise! She is known for flexing her schedule to accommodate the activities she wishes to attend having to do with her TUSD Board role. Many of these functions or activities are not mandatory but she likes showing up to events with HT and for any photo/selfie opportunity.
She flexes her schedule to arrive late to her Sunnyside job, takes long lunches, leaves early and basically does whatever she pleases. It goes way beyond flexing of work hours to conducting TUSD business during Sunnyside paid time.
She is not accountable to Sunnyside’s tax payers or, much less, to the Latino students that she is SUPPOSED to be serving. All of this demonstrates her lack of integrity.
Kristel Foster’s campaign information states that she is a teacher, which she is obviously NOT. It is an insult to those of us who are real classroom teachers to have her misuse the title.
- She, like her adored Superintendent- HT- is a LIAR. Her campaign platform is full of self-promoting information that misinforms the public about what SHE has accomplished as a Board member, which is very little, if anything at all.
- She presents a long list of awards that the District has received (most of which TUSD lobbied heavily to receive) but fails to say anything about improving achievement for students- which has not taken place while she has been a Board member- or the continued loss of students from the District.
- She claims that she has helped transform TUSD’s leadership. Yes, she brought in a Superintendent who had a few months of experience as an interim superintendent and he has gotten rid of everyone that was on the Superintendent’s cabinet (now called “leadership team”) when he became the Supt. The most recent administrative fatalities are Eugene Butler and Desiree Cueto. HT did away with Butler’s job without a blink of an eye. (More on Cueto below.) But now back to Kristel Foster and her lie-based campaigning, which paints only a rosy picture of TUSD.
- She says nothing about all of the continued and created problems that “this” Board majority has done nothing to address. One specific area is the dual language program within TUSD.
An article recently appeared in the Arizona Daily Star which exposed TUSD’s many shortcomings in its dual language program through a report which was provided to the District in March 2016. The article outlines the findings and then quotes HT Sanchez spouting off more lies. The man is a walking festival of public relations lies. The report has not been posted on the TUSD website and we are told that it is not easy to get ahold of and that the Star reporter did a freedom of information request to obtain it. Read the Star article at:
(Article continued below)
Had it not been for the Star exposing the report, the public and those of us within TUSD, would have never known about the it. The report exposes many severe weakness of the TUSD Dual Language Program. Here is the short list that made it to the newspaper:
- significant weaknesses that could prevent it from achieving the goal of producing students proficient in two languages;
- low expectations for students to achieve high levels of proficiency in Spanish because of pressure to perform well on assessments that are administered only in English;
- teachers’ ability to measure their students’ progress toward becoming bilingual and biliterate raised several concerns;
while students are tested in Spanish,
- the state-required assessment administered to kindergartners and first-graders is in English;
- the pressure for students to do well on the state mandated test has resulted in teachers deviating from the Spanish instruction when students are struggling to grasp concepts;
- at the intermediate and middle school level -lack of fidelity to the program model, pressure to perform in English and very low expectations for students to achieve high levels of Spanish proficiencies in reading, writing and oracy; and hyperfocus on students’ progress in English rather than their progress in both languages may compromise students’ ability to realize the goals of being bilingual and biliterate.
Within our group, we are thankful to have some experienced dual language educators who have shared that teachers have for years been clamoring for the development of Spanish assessments which are comparable to those administered in English. The requests have been ignored by the District.
The program has actually deteriorated since Sanchez arrived and Steve Holmes departed, like many other curriculum areas. The lack of fidelity has more to do with the inexperienced leadership that HT Sanchez continues to hire throughout the District. Most so-called leaders do not know a single thing about dual language pedagogy therefore they are totally unable to evaluate what they are observing in the classroom.
What we all find horrific within our group is that Kristel Foster was either CLUELESS (again) and not interested enough in the TUSD dual language program OR she just really doesn’t care. Either one is damning and telling of her competency. Here she is a “specialist” in a neighboring school district in the very area that TUSD is stumbling in.
Also very obvious is that the dual language report is an obvious indictment of the District’s compliance with the court order. Again. This situation should send a red-flag to Sunnyside in questioning the competency of their so-called specialist and to the voters within TUSD boundaries. Kristel Foster is either an airhead or doesn’t give a damn about kids. Take your pick but in either case she should not regain her seat as a Board member.
As a Board member, Kristel Foster adjusts her work schedule to attend dozens of TUSD functions (we are keeping a list) but is unable to ascertain the fidelity of a program of which she should naturally be interested in through questions of her adored Superintendent. Of course not! Doing so would show his inability to lead. She must know enough to know that he knows nothing.
Through our own research, we have found that the audit of the dual language program was court ordered. Perhaps if Kristel Foster had been keeping up with the court case and reading the court filings, she would have gotten some monumental hints as to how weak TUSD’s dual language program- her area of expertise program- is and has been for her entire term.
Why isn’t any of this found in her campaign propaganda? Has she not noticed, as everyone in TUSD has, that Mark Alvarez and HT Sanchez have become fast and furious buds. For the time being, Mark is a replacement for Adrian Vega, his former friend and bud. Mark, under HT’s corrupt “mentorship” has done as HT does; he blames and he blames and he blames. He blames his predecessor; he blames the court; he blames dual language teachers; he blames principals; and he is in over his head, just like his mentor.
Has Kristel Foster noticed any of this? Of course not! She sees and hears nothing that potentially rattles her image of her precious HT. And Kristel, who personally befriended a TUSD administrator (Desiree Cueto) after she was elected as a Board member (in other words, they were not friends prior to this fact), doesn’t have a clue about why it is wrong for HT and Mark to be buds.
Or how about the blooming “friendship” between HT Sanchez and Marie Marin? Desiree Cueto has also packed her bags and left TUSD. She could not stomach working with and for Clarice Clash, another HT Sanchez clone. There are no ethical boundaries in our current TUSD culture.
HT Sanchez and His New Leaf
A couple of weeks ago many of us sat through professional training with HT Sanchez He is on a new kick now and believes that he is “building his team.” During the session he actually had the nerve to say to us that he has turned over a new leaf and wanted us to know that if any of us had any concerns, we should feel comfortable in going to him directly and sharing our concerns.
It is all we could do not to break out in hysterical laughter. He may think his Board majority to be gullible fools but we are not. Within seconds of his “new leaf” pronouncement androids started vibrating throughout the room, with one text message after another. Here are some samples: He has got to be kidding! Does he think we are idiots? Next he will ask us if we want to buy some prime swamp land in Florida! He and Trump- one of a kind- HT will not stay on script either! Sure!!!
All the way around, HTs words were a joke. Even some of the new administrators recognized HT’s words to be shallow.
Our July 2016 Campaign Mottos
BREAK the HT Sanchez Board Block of 3
Anyone BUT Foster and Juarez, please!
We continue to be grateful 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 references them within their own posts, from time to time. Additionally, we want 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: http://tusdkidsfirst.org/
We are very proud that our 29th Letter is going to just short of 1,000 recipients without counting TUSD email addresses.
Also published on Medium.