Good riddance, Hinojosa

Michael Hinojosa

Evidently promises mean little to Michael Hinojosa, Dallas’ soon-to-be-ex superintendent.

“My name is off the market. Absloutely, my name is off the market, so please don’t call me,” he said after losing a bid to be Las Vegas’ superintendent last fall.

Turns out, someone did call him. And guess what? He answered.

Hinojosa is the sole finalist for the superintedent spot in Cobb County Georgia, right outside of Atlanta. They contacted him two weeks ago, and instead of saying no, like he promised, he flew out for an interview last Sunday. In case you were wondering, he didn’t tell the Dallas Board of Trustees that had just renewed his contract for another three years that he was still looking for another job.

Turns out Edwin Flores, one of the trustees, was right: Hinojosa is a “hot commodity” with “rockstar” qualities. Rockstars cancel concerts leaving ticketholder standing in line for refunds. Hinojosa is canceling his contract. Can the trustees get a refund?

Or better, lets do what Carla Ranger, a DISD trustee, proposed on her blog: get rid of him right now. She plans to call an emergency meeting of the board to “remove Superintendent Hinojosa immediately for bad faith.” Thank you, Carla.

Even if Hinojosa did launch DISD into vast improvement, which he didn’t, his success would be no excuse for his complete lack of professionalism in this case. What good is even the best superintendent if you don’t know whether or not they’ll be coming into work tomorrow?

But in any case, we can sleep soundly on the fact that Hinojosa won’t exactly be going into early retirement with Cobb County. Early last month members of their board of trustees faced a grand jury for almost four hours due to “issues of the school calendar, classroom issues, budget concerns and even administrative infighting,” said Atlanta’s local Fox channel. Given his lack of professionalism in the past few days, perhaps Hinojosa is a perfect match for this crack team.

But even with the clear amount of clean up Hinojosa will have to do once he gets to Cobb County, its hard to imagine he would be able to get it done. Though there have certainly been worse DISD superintendents, like the last few who’ve been as corrupt as school administrators can arguably be, Hinojosa hasn’t proven to be the strong leader he was initially thought to be. Perhaps if he was DISD wouldn’t have so many schools scraping by with miserable attendence and testing results.

Reading Shawn William’s post on South Dallas News about this whole debacle has really put things into perspective. I, like Williams, have no idea with Hinojosa’s legacy will be. And I, like Williams, feel that questions about the budget, the magnet school’s that Hinojosa supports robbing of funding and staff and the utter lack of real improvement shown under Hinojas’s leadership need to be answered by the man himself.

Regardless of whether he mans up and gives us some answers, I certainly do not feel he should get the benefit of serving out his term given that he quite literally lied to the entire school district. Nor do I feel that he has been the strong leader that DISD needs and deserves.

In the end, this is a sad situation for the entire school district. Given the hard times that are about to fall on DISD with budget cuts and teacher layoffs, it would have been ideal to have consistent leadership. While he says that he will stay on until the cuts are finalized, the hard times will arguably only continue from here. DISD will need strong leadership in the years ahead to manage such a large district on such a small budget with so few teachers. It’s just disappointing that Hinojosa doesn’t hold that same view.

Posted by on May 20, 2011. Filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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