KGUN 9News


Head of TUSD responds to bullying issues

Posted at 8:43 PM, Apr 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-23 00:46:29-04
After a tell-all interview with the principal of Booth Fickett who was shown the door this week superintendent H.T. Sanchez is speaking to KGUN 9 about T-U-S-D discipline issues.
Allegations of severe bullying and vandalism surfaced first at Secrist and now Booth Fickett.
We've heard from parents, teachers and staff across the district -- sounding the alarm that the new discipline policy of reducing suspensions and expulsions is not working.
Booth Fickett's principal, Charles Bermudez, told KGUN 9 his hands were tied in severe cases.
Fist fights, lewd behavior, bullying, vandalism, classroom disruptions -- not surprising at the middle school level but parents, students and TUSD staff at Booth Fickett came forward to argue it's gotten out of hand.
And they got little or no support from the district.
"The way we evaluate all our process we have to take a look at where have struggles and challenges," Sanchez said. 
But he says it doesn't include going back to the past punitive measures.
And he admits -- a breakdown in communication between school staff and the district contributed to the chaos in the classrooms.
"We have a lot of training we need to do in the district . in the past there have been some starts and stops with restorative training, positive behavior intervention support. i don't disagree we need to ensure.there needs to be a tremendous amount of training that goes with it. that's critical in everything," Sanchez said. 
He says some schools principals, teachers and staff are doing better than others, but he says there's still a big challenge going into next school year.
On a scale of 1-to-10...
"It's an 8 or a 9 it's going to be work. I don't underestimate it at all," Sanchez said.
Sanchez expects to bring the final code of conduct to the governing board to vote on in August. 
Be sure to watch a longer version of our sit-down interview with H.T. Sanchez.