Sweetwater School District Names Interim Superintendent
Sweetwater Union High School District chose a new interim superintendent on Wednesday, two days after the school trustees placed Superintendent Ed Brand on paid administrative leave.
In a closed session, the Sweetwater school board voted unanimously to make Tim Glover its interim superintendent. Glover is currently the assistant superintendent of student services and programs for the San Diego County Office of Education.
District officials said Glover is a graduate of Castle Park High School in Chula Vista. His twin brother, Thomas Glover, is the high school's current principal.
Board President John McCann said the district hopes that Glover can begin on Monday. McCann declined to say how much the district would pay Glover because contract negotiations are continuing.
In a closed session Monday night, the Sweetwater school board placed Brand on paid leave.
Brand came out of retirement in 2011 to replace former Superintendent Jesus Gandara after he was indicted along with four Sweetwater school board members and others in a “pay-to-play” political corruption scandal.
They were accused by the District Attorney’s Office of accepting gifts such as meals and tickets to events from contractors who did business with the school district and not reporting the items on required government disclosure forms.
Last week, Gandara was sentenced to seven months in jail and three years' probation for his part in scandal. The four Sweetwater board members who were indicted have pleaded guilty and are no longer on the school board.
In May, they were replaced on the Sweetwater school board by four temporary trustees who serve on the county board of education, which oversees the county Office of Education where Tim Glover works.
The temporary trustees will serve on the Sweetwater board until an election is held and a new board takes over in December. McCann said that is when a permanent Sweetwater superintendent would be chosen.
After the board announced on Monday that Brand was being placed on leave, McCann said the district received “a flurry of emails" from people interested in being superintendent, including one from Glover.
“The board looked at multiple options and we had several people we considered who were outstanding, and he rose to the top because of his credentials and integrity,” McCann said.
Glover has worked in the Chula Vista Elementary School and Sweetwater Union High School districts, according to a news release Wednesday from the county Office of Education. He also was principal at Salt Creek, Greg Rogers and Olympic View elementary schools, and assistant principal at Hilltop Middle and High schools in the Sweetwater district, the news release said.
"This is an exciting opportunity not only for me and my family, but for the entire South Bay Community," Glover said in the news release. "There are great things going on in the Sweetwater Union High School District and my focus will be on how to enhance these accomplishments by our students and our staff and usher the district into the future."
Despite the steps the Sweetwater school board is taking to move forward, the decision Monday to put Brand on paid leave stunned those who attended the meeting.
After it was announced, McCann had to repeat it twice to those in the audience. Then board Vice President Susan Hartley repeated it for a fourth time.
“He will work through the end of the day on July 3, and he will be paid through the balance of his contract, through the end of his contract which is on Oct. 1,” Hartley said.
Then the crowd erupted into cheers.
Brand, who currently makes $252,000 a year, was district superintendent from 1995 to 2005, when he left to become the superintendent in the San Marcos Unified School District. In 2011, he came out of retirement to serve as interim superintendent in Sweetwater, and in 2012 the board offered him a two-year contract.
McCann said on Wednesday that the decision to replace Brand early, after he had recently announced he would retire in October, was “not a punitive thing.”
“I think he was looking forward to retirement,” McCann said. “Dr. Brand, I feel, did a good job as a crisis manager.”
Brand, who has been an educator for 40 years, could possibly do consulting for the district, McCann said.