Matthew Lynde Chesnut for the Rivard Report
Edgewood Independent School District has moved into the next phase of state oversight after a special accreditation investigation by the Texas Education Agency found a systemic breakdown in the school board’s ability to govern the district and a failure of the board to work collaboratively with district administrators.
Texas Commissioner of Education Mike Morath announced Monday the appointment of a five-member board of managers to replace the state appointed conservator and relieve the elected Edgewood ISD board of trustees of their district oversight and management duties.
Morath also appointed a new superintendent for the 11,300 member district. Dr. Sylvester Perez, a familiar face in Texas education, will serve as superintendent alongside the appointed board of managers. Perez retired as the superintendent of SAISD in May 2015. He previously served as the superintendent in the Midland, San Marcos, Clint and Mathis school districts. He has worked as an administrator or teacher in four other San Antonio-area districts – Harlandale, Judson, Northeast and Northside.
The five appointed members are San Antonio community members, and will serve a yet-to-be-determined set term as Edgewood’s board of managers, as determined by TEA rules. The elected board will remain in their positions, but without decision-making authority, and the board of governors will report to TEA directly. Elections will also continue while the board of managers is in place. At the end of the set term, the board of trustees resumes its powers and duties.
The newly appointed board of managers includes:
- Stella Camacho – A graduate of Edgewood ISD, Camacho has one son who is also a graduate of the district and has two children currently enrolled in Edgewood schools. She has served as a PTA president and as secretary of the EISD PTA Council. She is self-employed as a bookkeeper.
- Frank Espinosa – Espinosa is a manager of terminal services for NuStar Energy. He is a member of the Edgewood District Alumni Association and the Edgewood Education Foundation, as well as being actively involved in many community organizations.
- Amanda L. Gonzalez – Gonzalez is the campaign manager for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Campaign. She has previously worked as a legislative aide and as a tax processor in the Bexar County Tax Assessor-Collector’s office, as well as working on a congressional campaign staff.
- Richard Santoya – Santoyo retired from the City of San Antonio Fire Department in 2015, having served for 30 years as a firefighter and paramedic. Prior to that, he worked as a physical science teacher and a registrar aide at John F. Kennedy High School in Edgewood.
- Roy Richard Soto Sr. – A graduate of Edgewood’s John F. Kennedy High School, Soto is the owner of five Premier Rental-Purchase stores. He has served as chair of the finance council of St. Ann Parish since 2005.
The board of managers will be sworn into office at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 24, during a public meeting at the Guerra Conference Center, 1930 Herbert Lane, in San Antonio.
Top image: A classroom in Edgewood ISD. Photo by Matthew Lynde Chesnut.