County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address title=
Dr. Susan Salcido presenting the State of Education Address (courtesy photo)
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Source: Santa Barbara County Education Office

On Wednesday, May 18, 2022, Santa Barbara County Superintendent of Schools Susan Salcido delivered a State of Education address during a special, education-focused event hosted by the Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Superintendent Salcido presented on the status of education from the countywide perspective, providing an overview of enrollment and test score trends, and graduation and college-going rates, comparing Santa Barbara County to the state. She provided status updates on student mental health, as well as trends in suspensions, chronic absenteeism, and expulsions. The presentation also touched on the Santa Barbara County Education Office’s efforts to expand access to early childhood education, college & career pathways, Career Technical Education, arts education, and mental health resources, among other areas.

Attended by more than 150 community members, Superintendent Salcido shared plans to host a series of Santa Barbara County Education Office-facilitated Community Conversations in Education. She said potential topics of conversation may include: 

  • Literacy and dyslexia

  • Youth mental health

  • Substance abuse

  • Impacts of social media and excessive computer screen time 

 

During the event, held at the Radisson Hotel in Santa Maria, Glenn Morris - President & CEO of the Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce & Visitor and Convention Bureau - also provided an update on the chamber’s programs and partnerships in education and workforce development. 

The full presentation can be viewed here.

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lovesbalot May 19, 2022 08:52 PM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

County of Ed CAASP for the most vulnerable students are painfully low. Scores for 2018-2019 pre-pandemic for students with learning differences only 0% were at grade level for literacy and 0% for math,; for students with socioeconomic hardship 4.3% at grade level for literacy and 0% for math and for the english language learners only 11.54% were at grade level for literacy and 0% for math. When whites and asians are included scores sound better but still not great. The vulnerable groups have painfully low scores... These students are not getting a free and appropriate education. We need to change our approach to literacy to raise these scores. Also we need to use LCAP prudently and most effectively on these students. Even though each district works out their LCAP plan the final approval comes from the County Office. I have sat on SBUSD LCAP advisory panel and many expenditures were for things district wide which goes against the california ed code. All students deserve to know how to read. It is beyond sad that the most vulnerable groups are no where near proficiency. You have to look at the subgroups to understand how bad it really is. Data tells the story but you have to sort it. If you add whites and asians scores things look up but that is because these groups often get outside support that parents of means can support. With SB County having the highest child poverty rate we need to look honestly at the failure to thrive for our most vulnerable. We need to be honest about this fact and not paper over it. Our focus needs to be on meeting the unmet needs of these students so they don't go from the education system to the justice system.

letmego May 20, 2022 09:49 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

This is definitely also true, but not a popular opinion. Whenever schools talk about putting the LCAP money where it is needed (disabled, EL, socioeconomically disadvantaged, and learning differences), you have people screaming about "what about MY kid??" The amount of $ and effort needed (just take a look at Franklin), is HUGE, and the upper class and rich folks will just complain louder.

GeneralTree May 19, 2022 06:28 PM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

One of the numbers in the report that nobody here has touched on yet - is students experiencing homelessness. 8.7% for the county - 2.9% for the state. Does anyone have any knowledge of the underlying criteria for these numbers. Are these kids who have experienced homelessness while in school for a certain period of time? Or is that how many were experiencing homelessness when surveyed?

sbdude May 19, 2022 03:19 PM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

It seems like Lozano is running for the wrong office. If she wants to have a voice on what curriculum is taught in the classroom and ethnic studies and stuff like that she ought to be running for SB Unified School Board.

If she wants to provide services to districts who don't have the ability or resources to do it themselves, manage a countywide staff of hundreds, and deal with budgetary allocations in the millions to all the districts in the county, then County Superintendent is her gig. But she won't be having a voice on what matters most to her and her supporters if she wins.

letmego May 19, 2022 02:14 PM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

On our failing schools, I'd like to point out that you can look up the trend of CAASPP test scores on line. I have a spreadsheet. If you simply want to look county wide, it's easy. 2014, 41% of students county-wide were proficient in ELA. That increased every year to 44, 44.19, 45.92, and most recently 47.22% in 2018-19. (Most recent data available due to COVID.) The trend is the same in math, though the percentages are lower, from 29% in 2014 to 36.21%.

You can complain all you want about the RATE of change, or the static number, but the numbers themselves showed improvement year over year. Of course this year, we will find out how COVID affected everyone.

PitLocal May 19, 2022 10:26 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

General Tree, I don't think any of us are in favor of dehumanizing any children of any background. I would think that we all want what's best for our kids. What makes you think that Lozano wants to dehumanize kids?
Is Salcido more qualified than Lozano? What makes you say that? It certainly can't be Salcido's failing performance as Superintendent.

GoletaisGood May 19, 2022 01:42 PM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

My kids had Lozano as a PE teacher at DP - She, in fact, has dehumanized kids... There were many complaints against her. She is not a beloved or respected teacher.
She does not resist putting her politics in her classroom so her campaign slogan is so hypocritical - all of her students had to listen to her views on a variety of issues (not related to PE). They even had to listen to her complain about her ex-husband - She is unprofessional and I'm happy that she went on leave from the classroom and never returned.

a-1652987126 May 19, 2022 12:05 PM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

I've listened to Lozano's comments on the issue. The main point is to make all potentially sensitive/divisive teaching materials transparent to the parents and community. If this stuff is so good ( and some of it might be), let's show it. Heck, we could all learn something. Openness builds trust, in-transparency creates doubt and division.

PitLocal May 19, 2022 09:50 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

Hey if you guys want to vote for a candidate that has results like what we're seeing, nothing I say is going to change your opinion. You want to vote for Salcido for some reason other than her results as Superintendent. Personally, I'm going to vote for quality education. And, she didn't chicken out of the debate, the debate was cancelled because Lozano wouldn't agree to rules that prevented her from actually engaging in a debate. I'm voting for Lozano.

Transparent May 19, 2022 09:49 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

SacJon, I don't fetishize test scores, but they are the most important metric we have to measure whether a low-bar of actual learning has been achieved.

Graduation rates go up most effectively by just passing kids along. [I don't know how are in good conscience "graduating" kids even from 8th grade, not to mention HS, who are faaar behind state standards, which are a very minimal bar, certainly not anything close to a standard of excellence.] Most of our colleges are now remedial institutions of mediocrity. Certainly not places like UCSB, but most of them. That's why we have an epidemic of young folks with a 4 year college degree, college debt, and very few useful or marketable skills.

You are right that it's a state-wide problem, and we're not much worse than others. The state of public education is indeed a very serious state-wide problem. We are doing a woeful disservice to our young people.

Thomas John May 19, 2022 02:49 PM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

I wish last night's DP Senior Awards Ceremony would have been live broadcast. SACJON you're right - so many of those kids are doing wonderful things and are going wonderful places. From MIT to the Marine Corps. One young woman had over 1000 community volunteer hours.

Transparent May 19, 2022 10:39 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

Fair enough. I think for all the friction and heat, everyone wants to support our kids. Personally, I can't support any program or intervention or policy that doesn't start with the fact that our status quo is expensive and largely ineffective. There are a lot of us falling at various places between "Rah Rah Betsy Devos!" and "Rah Rah California Political Establishment!"

sacjon May 19, 2022 10:26 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

TRANSPARENT - I agree, whatever we're doing now is not working for everyone. There are some who aren't benefiting in the same way as others, for many reasons. My point is, it's not as catastrophic for all as Lozano portrays. Further, while Salcido might not have been the best, she's a million times better than the alternative right now. Salcido has the tools to make this better, Lozano does not.

Transparent May 19, 2022 10:17 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

@Sacjon, True, we have success stories and a lot of positive stuff from some cohorts moving through our schools.

I share with educational lefties a realllly big sense of anger and urgency about how poorly minority students are doing. [We have 70% not at grade level in math at HS graduation, and I will never stop repeating that 'grade-level' is a shamefully low-bar.] I'm not a Lozano supporter, but neither do I support anything close to the status-quo. I share with the righties a strong feeling that we are trying to eliminate our /measures/ of inequality (grades, advanced classes, test scores) rather than /actually/ lifting up those that need our support to grow into their full academic and intellectual powers. [And sure, there are many human powers that aren't academic or intellectual, but those sure are an important pillar!] I feel it's becoming /less/ the case that public schools are an instrument for possible social mobility, and more the case that core needs are being met outside of school for those 'success' cases. My biggest fear about changes like eliminating grades, scores, co-seating, et cetera is that those changes will increase rather than decrease the disparities they are intending to address.

sacjon May 19, 2022 10:01 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

TRANSPARENT - yeah, but are our students really that bad off? Look around SB, we have HS aged kids doing community service projects to help their community, young entrepreneurs, incredible student athletes going off to some of the top schools in the country, engineers, lawyers, doctors, scientists, etc all in the making. Maybe I'm biased with my view of my daughters' classmates at DPHS, but those seniors are going places. I look back to my youth and I don't see the same level of student-led success as I do with our current generation. Sorry, but reading about and seeing first hand the success stories of so many of our local HS students, I just don't see the cause for alarm or the "failure" that so many Lozano supporters are clamoring about.

PitLocal May 19, 2022 09:32 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

We have 67,000 students in the public school system and half of them are not up to state standards in literacy. I know that first hand from my kids' experiences, and from my time volunteering in the classrooms of my grade school children. Personally, I don't need any more debate. Salcido is fired. Our SB public schools are failing. It's not acceptable. It's time for change. Vote Lozano.

sacjon May 19, 2022 02:20 PM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

11:03 - You see, THIS is the problem. No one, including herself, seems able to articulate how she's going to fix things. Her website is vague and low-info. If you can't easily explain how she's going to improve test scores, why are you voting for her?

PitLocal May 19, 2022 09:38 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

The first thing she's going to do is to create a literacy task force. I think it's needed. I just don't feel like voting for a candidate that in my experience, has failed our children. Her track record is proven. Our kids deserve better than what they're getting.

sacjon May 19, 2022 09:18 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

Looks like our test scores, despite all the handwringing, aren't too far behind the state scores. That's fine as those scores really aren't as important as the real data of our HS graduation and college going rates. That shows success in the real world. I've never paid too much mind to standardize "proficiency" tests as, in many cases (such as my own as a kid), they don't always show the true ability of the test-takers. Hinging everything on these scores without looking at other metrics of success is just shortsighted.

letmego May 19, 2022 09:46 AM
County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

And even if you look at test scores, prior to COVID (after which we have no data), the CAASPP scores had been steadily increasing across the board. There are blips here and there for certain grades/ schools. However, overall it was an upward trend. I have a spreadsheet.

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