May 8, 2020
Dear Superintendents,

Thank you for your time today. I’m writing to follow up on the issues we discussed during our meeting, and a few additional topic areas.

Your Feedback Requested
Like you, my performance as superintendent is evaluated each year by my board. As part of my evaluation, I would appreciate your sincere and honest feedback on how the San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE) and I are doing in supporting your work.

This survey is completely anonymous (unless you indicate your school district in your comments) and will be used in my evaluation, as well as for our continuing efforts to enhance and improve SDCOE's programs and services.

The survey is very brief and includes a handful of open-ended questions to identify how we can better meet your needs. Please submit your response by Monday, May 11; thank you so much for your honest and candid feedback.

Reopening Schools
Here is a link to the PowerPoint I shared today with images from schools reopening across the world. The information in the presentation about various countries' approaches to reopening comes from School-System Priorities in the Age of Coronavirus, a report from McKinsey & Company.

LCAP Public Hearing
While it appears the requirement to hold separate board meetings for the public hearing and adoption of the 2020-21 budget is waived due to the LCAP extension, we still consider having two meetings for this purpose as a best practice. A public hearing allows the district to collect comments from the governing board and the public, and to then consider changes before the final budget goes to the board for adoption.

Drive-Through/Drive-In Graduations
Some districts and schools have expressed an interest in drive-through or drive-in graduations.

Public health has indicated the following standards should be adhered to in executing drive-through graduations. Anything other than entering the stadium, drive-in, or other venue and driving through, picking up the diploma, and exiting the venue is considered “gathering” and is in violation of the governor’s executive order. The following are not allowed under the order:

• No exiting the vehicle
• No opening of a snack bar, bookstore, or any type of concession stand
• No opening of restrooms
• No stopping or sitting in vehicles to listen to a live or pre-recorded program
• No spectators
• Only members of the same household may be in the vehicle

Recognize Graduates
Looking for a way to celebrate 2020 graduates? The SDCOE Graphics Production team is producing yard signs and banners to support districts and schools in honoring graduates. The yard signs are 18 x 24 inches, and the banners are 24 x 36 inches with grommets for hanging. Both signs are $7.50 each and can only be purchased through districts, schools, or parent-teacher associations. Please contact Candida Bothel-Hammond via email at or via phone at 858-290-5576.

Supporting Native American Students
SDCOE’s Multilingual Education and Global Achievement team has developed resources to support districts and charter schools in your implementation of distance learning, specifically for our Native American student population. Instructional Learning Continuity Learning Considerations and Support for Native American Students targets the specific needs of this group and includes culturally relevant learning opportunities.

Reminder: Superintendent Video
Thank you to those superintendents who have submitted your videos to show unity and support for the communities we serve. If you have not submitted yet, here are the pieces you need:

To get the final piece produced as quickly as possible, please submit your video by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, May 13.

Thank you for your continued efforts to support San Diego County’s children during these uncertain times. As always, don't hesitate to reach out if you need further assistance.


Dr. Paul Gothold
San Diego County Superintendent of Schools
phone: 858-292-3514