September 7, 2001


Calls For Extending Supt. Bersin's Contract Premature!

Since the imposition of education-novice Alan Bersin to the post of Superintendent of the San Diego Unified School system four years ago, the 143,000-student district has been embroiled in constant conflict and disruption. The hiring of Bersin, engineered by the political and economic elites of the City of San Diego, has without question been the worse decision made since San Diego Unified was founded in 1936.

It is incredible that the same coalitions responsible for placing a totally incompetent Superintendent in charge of our children's education would have the unmitigated gall to attempt to extend his contract for four more years - nearly a year before the current contract has even ended! It is quite clear what their fear is. Their interests have little to do with our children's education or they would have been outraged at the results of Bersin's stewardship of the school system.

The majority of the schools within the San Diego Unified system failed to progress academically as seen in the testing results recently published. None of the previous non-performing schools showed anything but minimal advancement. It is not enough for Bersin and his panicking cohorts to point to the well-financed, majority White schools in Point Loma, La Jolla, University City, Rancho Bernardo and Scripps Ranch as symbols of Superintendent Bersin's accomplishments. Those schools have always scored well. They have always been within the protected enclaves of the well-off, White ruling elites. They always get the best teachers, administrators and support systems, as well as the most money.

A true indicator of what Superintendent Bersin and his so-called "team" have accomplished are the records and the accomplishments of the schools that serve the "working class" neighborhoods. These schools educate the African-Americans, Mexicans, Filipinos, Pacific Islanders, Nigerians, Arabs and South East Asians. The picture painted after looking at these areas is one that portrays a school system that is an utter failure.

One has to ask why the business and political elites are so eager to keep Bersin. Why are the developers, bankers, economic elites and the Chamber of Commerce so eager to hold on to him? La Prensa San Diego suggests FOLLOWING THE MONEY TRAIL! School districts are CASH COWS for many of these folks. Superintendent Bersin is sitting on top of a multi-billion dollar empire that he and his three controlled Board Trustees - Sue Braun, Eduardo Lopez, and Ron Ottinger - are lavishing upon the same folks who manipulated and paid for their elections.

The people, teachers, professional educators, and those who are dismayed at what has happened and is happening to our educational system, are ready to vote Sue Braun out and re-elect John de Beck in the upcoming March elections. The majority vote will then be in the hands of Frances Zimmerman, John de Beck and a new trustee who will care about our children and their education. Those three votes will suffice to fire Superintendent Alan Bersin and remove the cadre of Bersin incompetents that have been instrumental in destroying the quality of education in our city!

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