Not true? School Board president denies problems with superintendent

RAYMONDVILLE — School board President Lupe Ruiz has strongly denied the claims of an online petition that demands Superintendent Johnny Pineda’s termination.

The Facebook petition, with 32 signatures at 4:10 p.m. yesterday, claimed Pineda’s eight-year tenure led to low state test scores, fiscal mismanagement and student fighting and bullying.

The petition called on board members to terminate Pineda, whose contract expires in June 2017.

Pineda said he had no comment on the petition.

But Ruiz denied the accusations, adding trustees agreed Pineda met the board’s goals during an evaluation Tuesday.

“Everything on there is false,” Ruiz said of the petition. “It’s a waste of time.”

Ruiz said board members agreed Pineda met board goals set last summer.

“He’s doing his job,” Ruiz said. “He’s accomplished goals we set for him. We think he’s right on track.”

Ruiz said the board requested Pineda set student career paths and develop the district program allowing students to earn college credits through partnerships with universities.

“We want to make sure our kids are prepared for life,” Ruiz said.

Ruiz said the board requested Pineda interact with the community.

“We want him to be involved in the community, hearing them out — what they expect from our school,” Ruiz said.

Ruiz said the board requested Pineda’s “fiscal responsibility.”

“We want to make sure funds are handled appropriately,” Ruiz said.

Ruiz also said Pineda has operated fiscally responsibly.

“We have been financially sound,” Ruiz said. “We’re spotless.”

Last July, board members voted 5-2 against granting Pineda a one-year contract extension following an unfavorable job evaluation.

After last July’s evaluation, Pineda said he would work to improve state test scores, cut student disciplinary problems and curb absenteeism.

Pineda, who was hired in 2007 after serving with the Brownsville school district, has become the district’s longest-serving superintendent since at least 1990.