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who  we  are

There is no them. Just us. All of Us.

The Equity Collective is made up of several departments within San Diego Unified dedicated to uplifting and centering the tenets of equity, anit-bias, and anti-racism pedagogy. Together, we support students, families, and staff in creating choice-filled lives for the young scholars we serve. 

Street Art Mural by Carlos Barboza. Image shows three Black women reaching towards the front with an open, upturned hand. The young woman in the front has an afro, the woman on the left has corn rows, and the older woman on the right has a head wrap.
Illustrated image of Ebonee Weathers. A woman in a gray hoodie with a mohawk and nose ring, pictured in front of a blue background

executive   director

signature of Ebonee Weathers in white font

We embody Liberatory Design and Socially Conscious Leadership to support the thorough investigation of social inequity and systems of oppression. Through collaboration across discipline and departments, the Equity Collective commits to the dismantling of inequitable social structures and the creation of an educational system that practices radical love, equity, and inclusion.

Thoughtful interrogation and disruption of both internal and external systems of inequity allows the Equity Collective to identify harmful structures and address the mindsets that perpetuate bias so that we may dream and design systems and structures that equitably and responsively serve our community. Whether through organizational learning, coaching, programs, or resources, our team supports the development of a holistic framework designed to deepen San Diego Unified School District's commitment to, and practice of, equity, belonging, and inclusion.

Ebonee Weathers (she/her)

Image by František G.

team  us

Explore the websites of our Equity Collective departments by clicking on their logos below

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Dr. Haydee Zavala (she/her)

Instructional Coordinator

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Maissha Landers (she/her)

Executive Administrative Assistant

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Family engagement logo. includes the San Diego Unified logo surrounded by different colored abstract people (orange, green, blue, yellow, purple)

Pamela King (she/her)

Program Manager

We are here to support our staff, families and community partners in engaging in highly effective practices that bring stakeholders together for student success. We believe that positive relationships between families and schools serve to strengthen our collective leadership for the betterment of the community. 

Placement and Appeal Logo, includes a cube with different colored sides (green, blue, red) behind a smaller cube of different colored sides (magenta, yellow, teal)

John Ross (he/him)

Program Manager

Placement and Appeal is responsible for all aspects of the expulsion process including screening the cases, conducting hearings, interim placements, counseling students & families, and reinstatement back to schools as governed by California Education Code & District procedures.
 

Restorative Justice Practices logo. 5 abstract people of different colors (blue, orange, green, magenta, yellow)

Dr. Michelle Ferrer (she/her)

Program Manager

In SDUSD, the purpose of restorative justice is to cultivate relationships that help build & sustain a school culture that is positive & welcoming for students, staff, and families. We envision equitable and just schools where educational partners experience connection, belonging, & thriving.

Illustrated image of John Ross. A man in a gray button up shirt with a short beard and mustache,  pictured in front of a green background
Illustrated image of Pamela King. A woman in a white sleeveless shirt with  bangs and long, black hair, pictured in front of a pink background
Illustrated image of Michelle Ferrer. A woman in a pink and white checkered sweater with a hoop earrings and long wavy brown hair,  pictured in front of a blue background
Youth Advocacy logo. The word "youth" is spelled out in brown letters and the word "Advocacy" is spelled out in rainbow letters

Maria Schembri (she/her)

Program Manager

The Department of Youth Advocacy seeks to create environments that promote the safety and affirmation of all students by fostering a culture of care and respect that extends throughout the entire school district, cultivating a platform for student voice that builds agency, ensuring educational justice for all.

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Toya Profit (she/her)

Program Manager

Ethnic Studies is a content and pedagogy that humanizes and empowers all. Ethnic Studies cultivates love for ALL students by engaging in the critique and challenging of power & oppression across systemic, interpersonal, and internalized levels.Ethnic studies connects learning to past & contemporary movements for social justice while conceptualizing collective hope, healing & liberation.

Illustrated image of Maria Schembri. A woman in a rainbow t-shirt with rainbow colored hair,  pictured in front of a yellow to blue gradient background
Illustrated image of Toya Profit A woman in a black shirt with locs that are tied back in a bun, pictured in front of a red background
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biographies

Who we are is greater than or equal to what we do.

Illustrated image of Ebonee Weathers. A woman with tattoos, pictured in front of a gray and black background

EBONEE WEATHERS

she/her/hers

Executive Director, 

Equity & Belonging

I am a mom, sister, daughter, partner, and friend. My favorite color is black. I am a left-handed aquarian who loves to read, crochet, and watch a good movie. Born and raised in Seattle, WA, I prefer cold weather to the scorching hot. I could eat Cinnabon every day. I believe love is love, Black lives matter, no human is illegal, and kindness is everything. 

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DR. HAYDEE ZAVALA

she/her/hers

Instructional Coordinator, 

Equity & Belonging

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I grew up in Phoenix, AZ and have been enjoying the beautiful San Diego weather for the past 10 years.  I’m the youngest of four girls, and I’m also the first in my family to graduate from college. I decided to pursue education as a career to ensure students from similar backgrounds have easier pathways to college and beyond, and in 2018 I earned my PhD from San Diego State University and Claremont Graduate University, with my research focusing on the education of Latinx youth. I love traveling, reading, flowers, astronomy, and eating good food.

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MAISSHA LANDERS

she/her/hers

Executive Assistant, 

Equity & Belonging

I am a mom, sister, daughter, partner, and friend. My favorite color is black. I am a left-handed aquarian who loves to read, crochet, and watch a good movie. Born and raised in Seattle, WA, I prefer cold weather to the scorching hot. I could eat Cinnabon every day. I believe love is love, Black lives matter, no human is illegal, and kindness is everything. 

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PAMELA KING

she/her/hers

Program Manager 

Family Engagement

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Pamela King, a native of Louisiana, is the youngest of a family of eight children. Raised by a single parent, Pamela is the first and only child in her family to attend and graduate from college. With over 27 years in the San Diego Unified School District, Pamela worked in various capacities (i.e., teacher’s assistant, noon duty, Prime Time, reading specialist, classroom teacher, resource teacher at site/central office, and program manager) to support student learning. Pamela’s love for inspiring others to rise beyond their foreseeable potential is an extraordinary attribute that she manifests in her actions and work ethic daily.

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JOHN ROSS

he/him/his

Program Manager 

Placement & Appeal

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As a child, some of my afternoons were spent sorting crayons, passing out papers or putting the chairs on the desks so the custodian could come in and sweep. I enjoyed helping my mother who was an elementary teacher in our district for many years before retiring. My siblings and I are also products of San Diego Unified. I attended Baker Elementary and Rolando Park then SCPA. I then matriculated to Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia where I obtained a degree in English; it was a very enriching experience. I was introduced to some of my favorite authors and pieces of literature during my time at Morehouse. I returned to San Diego shortly after earning my BA, earning my teaching credential from USD. After obtaining my teaching credential, I wasn’t sure I wanted to teach, so I joined the SD Police Academy and, after a year, decided to return to education. Over the years I’ve taught at a variety of grade levels, served as Lincoln High's Dean of students and as associate administrator and principal in SDUSD for several years. When I’m not working, I enjoy traveling, being outdoors and spending time with family and friends.

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DR. MICHELLE FERRER

she/her/hers

Program Manager 

Restorative Justice Practices

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Dr. Ferrer (she/hers) was born in Manila, Philippines and raised in the Bay Area. She currently serves as the Restorative Justice Practices, Program Manager at San Diego Unified School District. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology at San Francisco State University and holds a Master of Arts Degree in International Multicultural Education from the University of San Francisco. She recently completed her doctorate degree in Educational Leadership from San Francisco State University. The title of her dissertation is A Love Letter Written on Bamboo: Cantering Educators’ Narratives on Restorative Justice. 

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TOYA PROFIT

she/her/hers

Program Manager 

Ethnic Studies

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Adventurer, Explorer, and Student

I am the daughter of educators and sibling of kings and queens,

I am descended from the Yourba, Igbo, and Mandinka people

I’m related to the O’Connors and O’Sullivan Mor’s of South Ireland.

My people were enslaved and violated by the Pugh’s from Wales and Pellerin from France.

Two of us have been lynched in trees, and Twenty of us have preached from pullpits 

We are teachers, leaders, lawyers, accountants, engineers, and protesters

Many of my people are buried on the land of the Chitimacha

We have fought in every single war on US soil.

I am Acadian, Creole, and Cajun.

I am American and so much more 

I invite you to this work we do, to celebrate and interrogate your own past.

I look forward to meeting you and building together.

I thank you for your inquiry and your bravery

May Love guide us in all that we do.

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MARIA SCHEMBRI

she/her/hers

Program Manager 

Youth Advocacy

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Maria Schembri (she/her) is a mother, educator, animal lover, and youth advocate. She grew up in South San Diego and graduated from SDSU. She was an English teacher at Granite Hills High School for 18 years. She was also her school’s GSA advisor. This work sparked a fire within her and led to her current role as Program Manager for the Office of Youth Advocacy in SDUSD where she works to create equitable systematic practices and supports for ALL youth.

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Photo of audre lorde wearing a loose, purple shirt with a floral print, short afro, pictured in front of a red halo with black concentric circles

When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.

-audre lorde

we  value  your voice

We need your voice to inform the work that we do. Please take a couple of minutes to share your thoughts by clicking the button below. Throughout the year, we will pose various equity questions to gather feedback and input from our educational partners. Thank you for sharing your voice. 

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