SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — San Diego Unified is one step closer to choosing its next superintendent.
Saturday, the community got a chance to hear the top candidates address several hot button topics during a public forum at Wilson Middle School.
The two finalists for the position are Dr. Lamont Jackson, San Diego Unified's Interim Superintendent, and Dr. Susan Enfield, the Superintendent of Highline Public Schools in Washington State.
Topics ranged from addressing diversity, equity, and inclusion to teacher recruitment and retention.
Cecelia Lucero is an SDUSD parent and Special Education Teacher. Lucero said she showed up to hear the candidates' opinions about more support for Special Education programs.
"I was hoping that they went into more depth, but I did like both answers that they gave," Lucero said.
Katrina Hasan Hamilton, a parent and community activist, said she wanted to know how the finalists would structure discipline in the district.
"I did like the fact that Dr. Jackson mentioned positive discipline and the fact that Dr. Enfield mentioned building relationships with students," Hasan Hamilton said.
But some parents said they're disappointed the candidates didn't address the district's mask and vaccine mandates.
Laura Clark, whose daughter is in the eighth grade, is against them.
"I don't think that's a decision the school board should be making or the state or the city. That's definitely a personal choice," Clark said.
Bonnie Jimenez said masks have made it difficult for her 9-year-old to learn.
"It's really difficult for a child that's struggling with literacy to be able to spell and pronounce words correctly when the teacher's face is covered the entire time and my child's face is covered as well," Jimenez said.
Ultimately, parents said they want the next superintendent to be someone who will put all students and their families first.
The school board plans to select a superintendent sometime next month.