Educators Make Change Following Accusations

The message: There's a new team in town, and it's time to move forward

By Rory Devine
|  Friday, Mar 16, 2012  |  Updated 11:40 AM PDT
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Dr. Melinda Nish, Superintendent of Southwestern College, discusses the changes made to the system in the wake of accusations of potential political corruption.

Dr. Melinda Nish, Superintendent of Southwestern College, discusses the changes made to the system in the wake of accusations of potential political corruption.

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Southwestern College has made some changes in the wake of accusations of potential political corruption.

The message: There's a new team in town, and it's time to move forward.

It was back in December when the homes of board members from the Sweetwater Union High School District, including homes of three former Southwestern College officials were raided.

The governing board recently released what it called a focused special review – looking at what happened and what to do to fix it. It’s all part of an investigation into potential political corruption involving a voter approved $389 million bond measure for construction at Southwestern.

On Thursday, the new superintendent, and mostly new board members held a news conference laying out steps for change - that include a hard look at Proposition R.

Projects that  have started, such as the so-called corner lot will stop while the facilities and educational master plan  are re-evaluated, and more community input is given. Projects will also be completed 10 years earlier.

"We can't change what’s happened in the past,” said governing board vice president Humberto Peraza Jr. “We can use those lessons to improve transparency and make this college a better place.”
 

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