Last month Round Rock ISD Trustee Brian Sellers joined that vast club of politicians who have suddenly discovered they "want to spend more time with family," and resigned without fulfilling the elected term of office. Sellers' abrupt and unexpected resignation gave the existing trustees the power to appoint a replacement without voter input, and this week they chose newcomer Claudio Cruz, who works for Austin ISD.
Some members of the board were very excited about Mr. Cruz since he has experience in passing bonds and, like both the former and current Superintendent, he also hails from Harlingen CISD. I have been inundated with emails and phone calls asking me if I can shed any light on what the fascination may be with Harlingen, but I'm afraid I've got nothing. I'm sure Harlingen has a lovely school system, but if the Round Rock folks are looking for a successful program to emulate I'm not sure why they would recruit from a district with student achievement scores some 17 points below ours. (RRISD received a score of 88; HCISD received a 71) Maybe this has something to do with it?
It is unclear as to how long Mr. Cruz has been in Round Rock, but surely he knew Superintendent Steve Flores back in Harlingen?
Next year, the Round Rock board will be trying to convince voters to approve a bond package, so get ready for the so-called "Citizen" bond committee. And oh, by the way, this week four of the board members voted against any transparency or 'conflict of interest' policies for the 'citizen' bond committee members, so expect plenty of business as usual.