County Superintendent of Schools Delivers State of Education Address

Santa Barbara County Education Office

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.


Written by SBCEO

Press releases written by the Santa Barbara County Office of Education. Learn more at

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  1. 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.

  2. 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?

  3. Hmmm – so the state test scores improve every year since Saucido was elected – but then you cry foul on school closures? Your argument isn’t compelling. At what percent should the testing data improve annually?

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. I saw a few more illegal Lozano signs strewn through the neighborhood this morning. Too bad she chickened out on the LWV forum – it may have given her an opportunity to explain what she might do differently.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. “You want to vote for Salcido for some reason other than her results as Superintendent.” – Yeah, she’s more qualified than Lozano and isn’t obsessed with extremist views about race and LGBQT issues.

  13. Let’s see the receipts.
    You’re probably most interested in Lozano’s want of dehumanizing LGBTQ youth and suppressing the uncomfortable conversation of race. She’ll get 3-5% of the vote then slither back into obscurity.

  14. @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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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!”

  18. PIT – “the debate was cancelled because Lozano wouldn’t agree to rules that prevented her from actually engaging in a debate. ” – Those words in that order means she refused to participate (ie, chickened out) in the public event.

  19. Who would have thought just a few years ago, that today, being opposed to teaching K-3 children about sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity in publics schools would be considered an extremist view.

  20. Who would have thought just a few years ago, we’d have to worry about the GOP financing the proud boys and oath keepers to burn down the capital and sending fake electoral ballots to the National Archive

  21. How do you know the alternative – a focus on transparency and positive educational outcomes – won’t be better? Lets give ourselves and our kids a chance. Not all change is bad, especially if what is going on isn’t working.

  22. 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.

  23. 12:05 – So Lozano has no intention of following the bills she praises in other states to prohibit the discussion of LGBQT issues and racism? Why are those issues “divisive?” They are facts of life and our history.

  24. Who would have thought a few years ago that the GOP would show it’s hatred of minorities and the LGBTQ community so openly? Oh wait – they did do that a few years ago and as long as I can remember.

Grahm Williams

Three SBPD Officers Awarded the H. Thomas Guerry Award for Valor