Monday, May 21

Letter to the Editor: Using anonymous source misrepresents ECE administrators

UCLA commissioned a task force to gather the thoughts and experiences of the Early Childhood Education community, to honestly reflect them in its report and to offer recommendations designed to help all of us move forward constructively in the important task of educating our young children.

Unfortunately, the Daily Bruin published a story today containing inaccuracies, and that eschews input from UCLA, relying instead on disinformation from anonymous sources who appear unaware of the progress at ECE and to be pursuing personal agendas against ECE administrators.

Personal attacks in the story leveled against Jayanti Tambe and Brad Erickson are unwarranted. Erickson is working with ECE staff, teachers and parents to lay the groundwork for implementing substantive changes at ECE. As I stated previously, I am grateful to Tambe for her efforts on behalf of ECE children and families.

The task force report provided UCLA leadership with important feedback and recommendations that established the foundation for the four action items listed in my Feb. 16 cover letter to the report.

As I stated in the report, these action items include establishing an advisory board comprised of parents and staff; appointment of a search committee to hire a new executive director; development of an implementation plan for task force recommendations; and development of a plan to strengthen communications between ECE management, employees and parents.

Initial planning efforts are underway in each of these areas.

First, UCLA officials are reaching out to ECE parents, staff and teachers in the next week to initiate the process of defining the role of the advisory board and determining its composition.

Second, the position of interim executive director has been posted on the UCLA Campus Human Resources website. Concurrently, the job description for the permanent executive director has been updated and will be posted soon. UCLA leadership will appoint a search committee and work with CHR to plan a comprehensive, national search process. The search process will be thorough, transparent and inclusive.

Third, UCLA and ECE leadership and staff are gathering information on a range of task force recommendations, from policy and regulatory matters to parent groups and the placement of ECE within UCLA’s organizational structure. These efforts are ongoing and will be publicly addressed in the near future, as each of them take more concrete form.

Fourth, UCLA and ECE leadership and staff will be meeting to discuss a communications plan for ECE that is responsive to the task force recommendations in this area. One step that has already been taken is that each center director is publishing a weekly newsletter for families in the respective centers.

I ask that the Daily Bruin reconsider allowing anonymous sources from making unsubstantiated and incorrect claims that ignore progress and sully the good names of those who are working hard to bring them to fruition.

Scott Waugh

UCLA Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost

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