Joint Statement from Interim City Manager Cynthia Kurtz & PUSD Superintendent Brian McDonald, Ed.D.

Much has transpired after the incident at San Rafael Elementary School. There have been many difficult conversations in the city and in the district that have surfaced pain points and areas where we can and must grow. It's now time to look to the future and to put to work what we have all learned together.

In the last week, we, as superintendent of the Pasadena Unified School District and interim city manager, have met and held long and candid conversations to discuss the interests of the people we serve. Foremost in our minds is that we must work together every day to serve the children, youth, families, employees and residents of our great community. We rely on each other both as institutions and as leaders.

Our focus is on affirming the strong relationships between the City and its first responders and the school district, its schools, students, employees and families. We will work jointly to improve interagency communication and collaboration and build better mechanisms to prevent and quickly resolve any issues in the future.

One of our shared goals is to make certain that the entire community knows that the children, educators and staff are safe and secure at school. In that regard, the Pasadena Police Department will continue to meet its obligation to respond to all calls for service. Officers often approach these calls with many unknown circumstances, and it is critical that the police department and the district integrate communications to minimize any uncertainties.

Our mutual goal is civility. We will continue to foster a climate of civility, collegiality, tolerance and reasoned debate, embracing our diversity as a strength that adds vibrancy and creativity to our perspectives, deliberations and decisions.

The district and the City often have to navigate sensitive situations that impact the lives of our students, employees and residents. We affirm our commitment to respecting the personal dignity of all students, employees, community members and residents. Each of us and those we serve are deserving of respect and courtesy, and this must underlie every interaction and communication.

We are privileged to serve a vibrant and diverse community rich in its perspectives.

We know that it is imperative to maintain a consistent line of communication on a day-to-day basis that will continue to work even in times of crisis.

We commit to our entire community that we will continue to move forward and work together.

Cynthia Kurtz
Interim City Manager
City of Pasadena

Brian McDonald, Ed.D.
Pasadena Unified School District