Letter from the Sweetwater Equity, Culture and Support Services Team

Colleagues and friends:
As the world watched the violence and hatred carried out by white supremacists in Charlottesville, there was absolute shock at the level of brutality exhibited by these extreme hate groups. And as educators, we have a moral and ethical responsibility to condemn racial and ethnic prejudice and to talk candidly with our students about these issues. It is equally important that we embrace diversity within our district and confront prejudice throughout our communities; if we do nothing, we can be seen as complicit.

Although these events are dispiriting, we want to reaffirm our commitment to strengthening unity within our schools and serving as beacons of hope for our students. Our district will not and does not tolerate racism, violence, or bullying by any individual or group. Moreover, we will continue to actively build inclusive, caring, and positive environments so each district student and staff is provided with a respectful and safe learning and work experience.

Please recall that last year, our Board of Trustees approved a new resolution to ensure that our students are treated with dignity and respect and have the opportunity to learn in a physically, emotionally and intellectually safe environment. And although we have many areas to improve as a district, our focus will remain on methods in which we can serve our students and staff in better and more effective ways. For instance, we will continue training our staff around issues involving diversity, inclusion, equity, bias, race, ability, and sexual and gender orientation. In addition, our district will continue collaborating with community members, subject matter experts, parents, and students to develop strategies for improving district practices.

The Sweetwater Union High School District family must not accept acts of racism, bigotry, or violence and it is imperative that we provide each student, and staff member, with a safe, positive, healthy, caring, and respectful learning and working environment.

We are asking you to stand with us in denouncing racism and other forms of bias. Together, our unified school community will make a positive and impactful difference in the lives of district students and families.

Respectfully,

Equity, Culture, Support Services Team

A partial eclipse of the sun will be visible from San Diego County on August 21, 2017

Dear Parents/Guardians,

A partial eclipse of the sun will be visible from San Diego County on August 21, 2017 from approximately 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m (https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/in/usa/san-diego) and a total eclipse of the sun will be visible from other parts of the country, which NASA will livestream on its website.

Please understand that in its most fundamental form, the eclipse is not dangerous, but looking at the sun without proper protection is always harmful. One of the primary safety issues during an eclipse is that curiosity regarding this phenomena makes it more likely people, especially children, will look at the eclipse without proper eye protection.

Looking at the eclipse without eye protection is extremely risky and could lead to burns which damage the light sensitive cells that give us the ability to see. These burns do not typically lead to an immediate loss of vision. However, the loss of vision generally occurs the next day which to some, looks like a black hole in the center of the affected person’s sight. In some cases, people re-gain some of their vision over a period of several months, but in many cases, the loss is permanent.

Schools, classrooms and individuals are advised to watch the eclipse via NASA’s live stream. Our Curriculum and Instruction department have provided school sites with age appropriate lesson plans and tools to maximize learning about the eclipse in a safe manner.This is to prevent harm to those who surreptitiously view the eclipse without precautions.

Lastly, please note that the Sweetwater Union High School District does not support the use of manufactured eclipse glasses for our students.

NASA Live Stream of August 21, 2017 Solar Eclipse Website: https://www.nasa.gov/eclipselive

2017 Eclipse Phenomena – PDF

Estimados padres de familia o tutor:

 

El 21 de agosto de 2017 ocurrirá un eclipse parcial del sol el cual se podrá apreciar en el condado de San Diego de 9:00 a.m. a 12:00 p.m. (https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/in/usa/san-diego) y el eclipse total del sol se podrá apreciar en otras partes del país, el cual será transmitido en vivo por la NASA en su página de internet.

 

Como usted comprenderá, el eclipse en sí, no es peligroso, sin embargo observar directamente el sol sin la protección adecuada siempre es dañino. Uno de los principales problemas de seguridad durante un eclipse es que la curiosidad sobre este fenómeno hace que sea más probable que las personas, especialmente los niños, observen el eclipse sin la protección adecuada de los ojos.

 

Observar el eclipse sin protegerse los ojos es extremadamente arriesgado y puede ocasionar quemaduras las cuales dañan las células sensibles a la luz que nos proporcionan la capacidad de ver. Dichas quemaduras típicamente no conducen a pérdida la inmediata de la vista. Sin embargo, la pérdida de la vista generalmente ocurre al día siguiente, el cual, para algunos se ve como un agujero negro en el centro de la vista afecta de la persona. En algunos casos, las personas recuperan parte de la vista después de un período de tiempo de varios meses, sin embargo en muchos casos, la pérdida es permanente.

 

Se ha recomendado a las escuelas, salones de clases, y al público en general, que observen el eclipse a través de la transmisión en vivo de la NASA. El Departamento de Currículum y Enseñanza proporcionó al personal de los planteles escolares lecciones y herramientas para maximizar el aprendizaje sobre el eclipse de manera segura. Lo antes mencionado es para prevenir daños a las personas que observan el eclipse a escondidas, y sin tomar las debidas precauciones.

 

Por último, les reiteramos que el distrito Sweetwater Union High School District no apoya que los alumnos usen los anteojos fabricados para observar el eclipse.

 

La página de internet de la transmisión en vivo de la NASA del eclipse de sol que ocurrirá el 21 de agosto de 2017 es: https://www.nasa.gov/eclipselive

Letter to Parents Regarding Student Transcripts

Dear Senior Parents and Students,

The Sweetwater Union High School District in the summer of 2016 transitioned to a new student information system called Infinite Campus. Throughout this transition, the Informational Technology and Curriculum and Instruction departments worked closely with school sites to develop a customized transcript for SUHSD students. The district’s previous transcript contained numerous elements that took years to develop and were continually modified.

Some parents have shared their concerns about a potential loss of data with the transition to Infinite Campus. As the new system has been put into operation, we have introduced new elements of data. Throughout each of these stages of implementation, validation of information has occurred to ensure accuracy. Infinite Campus houses all the pertinent information and data required for accurate transcripts.

We have established a transcript that is accepted by colleges and universities that includes weighted and unweighted grade point averages, total credits attempted and total credits earned, graduation date, detailed list of all course taken, and citizenship grades. Your child’s high school is able to provide a copy of the official transcript through the Registrar’s office.

If you have any additional questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

Sincerely,

Ana Maria Alvarez
Assistant Superintendent, Teaching and Learning

Regular Meeting to be held on July 24, 2017 – Special Tax Levy for Fiscal Year 2017-2018 for Community Facilities Districts / Mello-Roos

Notice is hereby given that the Board of Trustees of the Sweetwater Union High School District, at its Regular Meeting to be held on July 24, 2017, will consider the adoption of the resolution which establishes the Special Tax Levy for Fiscal Year 2017-2018 for Community Facilities District Nos. 1-6, 8, 9A, 9B & 10-20. Details regarding adjustments to the Special Tax Levy can be found on the July 24, 2017, Meeting Agenda.

1 to 1 Initiative Update

With recent reports regarding the Sweetwater Union High School District 1 to 1 Initiative being made in the media, it is important to clarify the device statistics and statuses being reported for this initiative.

As part of the District’s plan for Educational Technology, the goal is to provide students with the technology tools that will prepare them for college and career. Students use the devices to learn about the efficiency and power of technology both in and out of the classroom. As part of this initiative students learn digital citizenship and staff receives professional development on how to use technology as a tool in the classroom.

Since 2010, the district began acquiring iPads for a variety of uses. The majority of devices were acquired between 2012-2014 to directly support the 1 to 1 initiative. A total of 29,843 iPads were acquired during this time.

Year Acquired Active Inactive Sold
2012 7,947 706 337 5,523
2013 9,235 3,448 225 3,260
2014 12,661 8,224 146 8
Totals 29,843 12,378 708 8,791

Of the original devices purchased, 12,378 remain active within the district, with 7,966 additional newer devices that were added in to support the initiative for additional students and to replace iPads taken out of circulation.

2012 2013 2014 Total
Replacement Devices 1,381 2,302 4,283 7,966

A total of 708 devices are inactive, meaning that they were lost, stolen or taken out of inventory. This represents approximately 2% of the total number of iPads being used for the initiative, meaning that almost 98% of the devices are physically accounted for.

Finally, in order to replace older devices, the Information Technology Department has begun selling devices to Gazelle, an e-commerce company that buys and sells used electronic devices. In 2017, the Sweetwater District sold 8,791 devices from the 1 to 1 Initiative. Funds from the sale are being placed directly back into the 1 to 1 Initiative.

The Sweetwater Union High School District tracks all devices in use for both the 1 to 1 Initiative and for use in other areas and can specifically account for all devices. All iPads are bar coded internally, to include the serial number, model number and software version of devices purchased for this initiative. In addition, we are now utilizing device tracking software for all devices in inventory. All devices for this initiative are tracked and can be accounted for.

“Doing Business with Sweetwater Union High School District” workshop for businesses of all types

Who should attend?

This workshop is for local businesses, small businesses, and businesses of all types. The program will cover subjects such as registering to do business with the District, bid and proposal processes, terminology, rules and regulations, and how to find business opportunities with SUHSD. No workshop registration is required.

Location, Date and Time

Location:  Board Room – 1130 Fifth Ave, Chula Vista 91911
Date:  July 25, 2017 (Tuesday)
Time:  10:00 – 11:00 a.m.

Location:  Board Room -1130 Fifth Ave, Chula Vista 91911
Date: July 27, 2017 (Thursday)
Time: 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.

For directions or more information

Phone Number: (619) 691-5540

Informational Flyer

Click here to download an informational flyer about the event

Sweetwater Union High School District Graduates Thousands

Sweetwater Union High School District Graduates Thousands

“I am so proud of each graduate and student who graduated or promoted. We celebrate the achievements you’ve attained and the challenges you’ve overcome. Being an educator is the most rewarding career of all.” This is how Dr. Karen Janney, Superintendent of the Sweetwater Union High School District, described her feelings about the classes of 2017 and the role of district faculty and staff.

This year, more than 6,500 high school seniors and middle school 8th graders graduated and promoted from across South County. A total of 27 graduation and promotion ceremonies took place over the course of four days.

Commencement ceremonies played to standing-room-only crowds of families and other supporters who turned out to see the graduates walk the stage to receive their diplomas and certificates from the Sweetwater District Board of Trustees members.

The Adult Schools commencement on May 26 was the first in the series. Held at Castle Park High School Stadium, Board of Trustees President Arturo Solis and member Frank Tarantino accepted the class of 2017. The following week began a series of middle and high school graduations and promotions, several held at De Vore Stadium at Southwestern College.

In the Fall, Sweetwater District high school graduates will attend several of the most prestigious universities in the U.S. including Harvard, Brown, Stanford, MIT, UC Berkeley, UC Los Angeles, UC San Diego and San Diego State University.

District Board of Trustees member Frank Tarantino inspired the graduates at several of the ceremonies by his reference to graduates who had walked the stage before them and interesting facts of things that occurred the year students were born.

Superintendent Janney heard some exceptional student speeches at our ceremonies that shared wisdom beyond their years and inspiration galore. Here are some samples of statements created by Sweetwater District students:

  • We are in motion on our way to success!
  • We can build our future!
  • We all have to have hope!
  • We are all champions!
  • Surround yourselves with people who inspire you!
  • All our dreams are valued!
  • Our lives are intertwined for life as Red Devils!
  • Find your own passion!
  • Time to open a new chapter in our lives!
  • What are the moments that led you to today?
  • YOLO – you only live once!
  • Raise your voice!
  • Our purpose will move us forward!
  • Become our best selves!
  • There is no fear that can’t be conquered!
  • May you have the vision to follow your dreams!
  • The world is calling for our humanity!
  • On to pursue your dreams!

The Sweetwater District extends it best wishes to the Class of 2017 as our students spread out across the nation and world as they pursue higher education, trade schools, the military and the workforce.

 

Negotiations Update: Tentative Agreement Reached on Successor Agreement with SCGA

Sweetwater Union High School District and Sweetwater Counseling and Guidance Association are pleased to jointly announce that we have reached a tentative agreement for a three-year successor agreement.  In the coming weeks both SCGA membership and the Board of Trustees will be voting on the Successor

Agreement.  Highlights of the Agreement include:

  1. Article 4, Wages:  3.75 % salary increase retroactive to January 1, 2017.
  2. Article 13, Caseload:  Codifies the lowering of counselor caseload from 400 to 1 to 360:1.
  3. Articles 5 & 22, Work day/Work year & Counselor In service: Adds three additional days to counselor schedules for professional learning and collaboration, which will help cut down on counselors being pulled away from their sites when students are present.
  4. Article 5, Work day/Work year: Establishes a Head Counselor position & stipend at Learning Centers.
  5. Article 7, Transfer Article:  Changes the transfer process to no longer include the lateral list, ensuring unit positions can be filled more quickly & allows for greater access to positions by unit members.
  6. Article 11, Leaves:  Expands parental leave.
  7. Article 10, Evaluations:  Clarifies that Written Assistance Plans related to employee evaluations must be in writing; and illustrates when continuances of evaluations can be given by principals.
  8. Reopener in second year to continue working on issues related to counselors working outside their duty day during the second year of the agreement.
  9. Reopeners in the second and third year of the contract for wages and benefits, once the 2017-18 school and state budget are finalized.

SCGA unit members will conduct hearings and vote on the agreement in the near future. The Board of Trustees will take action on June 12, 2017. We appreciate the work of both bargaining teams over the past year to reach this agreement. We are proud of the collaborative spirit at the bargaining table and how the process demonstrates that working together is the best way we ensure each student has the supports they need to succeed.  We look forward to working together to implement the agreement and ensure that District administrators and counselors understand the changes in the contract.