The Gifted and Talented Education program (GATE) in Santa
Barbara was blindsided by controversy last week when three
executive members of its district advisory council resigned.
Angered by district coordinator Sandy Robertson’s perceived
financial wrongdoings, Lee McCoy, Peter Gaum, and Janet Kayfetz
stepped down from their respective roles as chairperson,
vice-chair, and chair of fundraising. The trio accused Robertson of
preventing the equitable distribution of more than $65,000 of
parent-raised funds last year. According to Assistant
Superintendent Jan Zettel-district liaison to the council-a faulty
system is to blame for the alleged money mishap. Monthly meetings
of the 29-person GATE council-a mix of parents and educators-are
temporarily suspended while district officials examine the problem.
An independent investigator is expected to look into the
allegations against Robertson.


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