Ethnic Studies teachers call for TUSD head to leave

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TUCSON, Ariz. -- Two press conferences, two different stories. Eleven Ethnic Studies teachers say one thing, TUSD Superintendent John Pedicone says another.

He's been at the helm of TUSD for just over five months, but Ethnic Studies teachers say enough is enough.

"Dr. Pedcione must be held accountable for his actions, the treatment of his teachers and the community he was chosen to serve.  He  must resign," said Ethnic Studies teacher Curtis Acosta.

The list of charges is long.

"He has abused his power.  Dr. Pedicone has used our students as pawns.  He has threatened our program," said a group of teachers.

The report card is dismal:

For honesty, F
Genuineness, F 
Connection to community, F
Leadership, F

And the teachers say, that's a lot of failure.

"It's heartbreaking to have a boss who won't listen to you," said Acosta.

Pedicone responded in a press conference of his own.

"Am I gonna throw in the towel, no.  I don't know why anyone would get that impression.  I made a committment to the district that I'm going to live up to," said Dr. Pedicone.

Pedicone's tenure has been brief, but plagued with tough moments.

District board meetings have been hijacked by students. Officers have made arrests.

Meanwhile Pedicone and Ethnic Studies groups have yet to meet face to face, but Pedicone says, that's not for a lack of trying.

"The student groups has been unwilling ot meet unless certain conditons are met," said Pedicone.

"That's a flat out bold face lie," said Acosta.

Teachers say they've sent 9 letters to Pedicone.

"We were ignored we have never received an answer to any of the letters we hand delivered to him," said Deyanira Nevarez from Save Ethnic Studies

"It's 11 individuals who are doing this, probably strategically for other reasons that are important to them," said Pedicone.

Dr. Pedicone says he expects a decision from state school Superintendent John Huppenthal in the next few weeks.

Based on what that decision is, the district will determine what their next steps are.