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New Sweetwater Superintendent Contract Approved in 3-2 Vote

Despite criticism from the public and that no search for a replacement was ever took place, Dr. Ed Brand was named permanent superintendent of the Sweetwater Union High School District Tuesday morning.

At a meeting that went past 3 a.m. Tuesday, the Sweetwater Union High School District Board of Trustees voted 3-2 in favor of offering Interim Superintendent Dr. Ed Brand a permanant contract.

No votes came from board president Pearl Quinones and Bertha Lopez. Both are up for reelection in November.

Much of the meeting that started at 6:30 p.m. took place in closed session.

The decision was met with boos from an audience of about 50 people that waited for the vote, U-T San Diego reported.

The paper reported last week that Brand submitted a letter of resignation in July that took effect at the end of August that was not made public.

New state limits pay to individuals receiving state teacher pension funds to $40,011. Brand was being paid $20,000 on a month-to-month basis.

Brand was hired by the school board as an Interim Superintendent in June 2011 on the agreement that he would hold the job until a replacement could be identified, but no search for a replacement ever took place.

Brand was superintendent from 1995 to 2005 and stepped back into the job after Jesus Gandara was fired.

His new two-year contract will pay $252,000 a year with possible increases in the future, about 30 vacation days, health care and other benefits. See the new contract attached here in PDF.

Concern over the superintendent's contract has attracted crowds of teachers, parents, teachers' union and others to recent meetings to oppose a permanent contract.

Some critics said Brand has not reflected the transparency he promised when he took the job last year.

Earlier this month the Prop O Citizens' Bond Oversight Committee voted unanimously to give Brand a vote of no confidence due to a lack of transparency.

At a Sept. 10 meeting, former board member Jaime Mercado offered to act as the district superintendent for free and urged the group not to sign any long terms deals until after possible changes to the board's makeup take place, including charges against Arlie Ricasa and Pearl Quinones and November elections.

sosocal September 25, 2012 at 09:23 PM
Ed Brand--the face of greed gathers more as he was able to negotiate a contract which ensures his third golden parachute, while upping his retirement pay to the maximum allowed. Ed Brand--the face of pretense, as he claims to want to lead the district, when he really only wants to increase his personal net worth. Ed Brand--the face of untruth, as his pattern of deception with regard to "working for free during the month of September" becomes planning to resign August 31 in July, submitting a letter of resignation mid-August, effective August 31, and then not showing up for work in September, while he plots to drain funds from Sweetwater. Too bad the majority board of Sweetwater (McCann, Ricasa and Cartmill) can't see in the face of Brand what this means for their future: the demise of any respect the public holds for them as they sold out the students, the parents, the teachers and the entire community. The old Chinese comment "May you live in interesting times" I send on to McCann, Cartmill and Ricasa. May your days bring enlightenment and your futures much revelation of the truth.
Libi Uremovic September 26, 2012 at 02:38 PM
"...No votes came from board president Pearl Quinones and Bertha Lopez. Both are up for reelection in November....' both of them need to go... if we're going to save our towns and schools there's going to have to be some tough decision made in upcoming months...and it's going to take leaders with balls of steel to break the corruption let's get lopez and quinones out of office in november then recall everyone else that's corrupt after the election... it's time for we the people to take a stand...we take back our cities...we take back our schools...we take back our state... http://libionline.net/ there's is plenty of tax revenue to have great schools and communities - the problem is the corruption at the top...
sosocal September 26, 2012 at 06:29 PM
Bertha has been fighting the "forces of darkness" single-handedly for some time now. Several attempts to smear her have taken place by persons I will not mention by name at this time, but those attempts will not work. Bertha is honorable, sticks to her word, does her homework and fights for the students. She is not in this for personal gain or political offices down the line. Pearl is finally stepping up and thinking for herself. It is a beginning. The ones who need to go are Cartmill, McCann and Ricasa, who have sold out the students of Sweetwater. Only they know why. Shame on them for what they have done. Brand is a man whose one thought is his own financial gain, and he found "Three Stooges" to give him exactly what he wants. Brand, McCann, Cartmill and Ricasa are the ones who need to go. Thanks for all who read, know the truth and believe in giving the students and teachers the opportunity to grow intellectually, ethically and work for the betterment of the community.
Sissy Jacks September 30, 2012 at 11:21 PM
Bertha Lopez is the ONLY board member who has stood up for the students and taxpayers as her record has shown. as Ms. Libi has stated there is MUCH corruption at the top, however Lopez has attempted to fight it - quinones needs to be voted OUT OF OFFICE, why on earth someone with felony indictments against them and getting ready to go to trial in early 2013 has chosen to run is beyond comprehension. quinones is NOT what this district needs, quite to the contrary. Mr. George Cameron is the choice for ANYONE looking to restore sweetwaters good name. he refuses to play the game of 'it is all about me'. his ONLY focus is the students - now how refreshing is that?????????? VOTE GEORGE CAMERON and BERTHA LOPEZ

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