Education, business and community leaders who earlier aired their concerns about the exit of Superintendent Terry Grier are meeting at the University of San Diego today to go over a new study of test scores, finances and employment in San Diego Unified.
They also plan to talk about improving what happens for kids in the massive school district.
It is the first such gathering after Grier departed, signaling that the alarm about the status quo at the school district hasn’t disappeared along with the last superintendent. It could be a reawakening for business leaders, who have shied from school matters in the years since Alan Bersin led the schools, though members stress that the coalition also includes educators, community members and parents outside the business sphere.
The meeting, held by the Center for Education Policy and Law at the University of San Diego, wasn’t open to the public. It was announced to the people who signed an open letter in the Union-Tribune this summer expressing their worries about superintendent turnover and pleading with the school board to find a way to keep Grier. The signers included retired state Sen. Dede Alpert and parent leader David Page.
The invitation, which was later forwarded to voiceofsandiego.org by several participants, stated:
The majority of the session will be reserved for a discussion of the various concerns, ideas and issues important to participants and how we all can best assist in improving outcomes for students. Issues raised thus far by interested individuals include creating Twenty-first Century learning environments, transparency of district actions, parent/community involvement as well as selection of a new superintendent and governance.
I showed up to the meeting, but was turned away. CEPAL Director Scott Himelstein told me he couldn’t allow me to attend because he hadn’t told attendees that the press would be there. He agreed to speak with me afterwards; check back for details later when we talk.