CCSD School Board of Trustees Making Decisions that Affect DP Students

Credit: CCSD

Credit: CCSD

Jay Green, Staff Writer

The CCSD Board of Trustees is a group of seven elected officials who get to make some of the most important decisions about our schools here in Clark County. But, most students at Desert Pines don’t seem to know too much about them or what they do.  

The Trustees make decisions on what’s best for the students across the Vegas Valley. Each trustee is elected once every 4 years by the voters in their district. There are 7 members total. Irene Cepeda [President and Trustee for District D], Evelyn Garcia-Morales [Vice President and Trustee for District C], Lola Brooks [Trustee for District E], Linda Cavazos [Former President and trustee for District G], Danielle Ford [Trustee for District F], Lisa Guzman [Trustee for District A] and Katie Williams [Trustee for District B]  

The Board of Trustees has been on the hot seat, making plenty of controversial decisions, especially relating to the Covid pandemic.

Recently, The CCSD School Board has announced that due to many cases of Covid rising within the school district. They ordered a 5-day “pause” to get teachers and students to catch up on testing and screened for Covid. 

Shelia Lewis, a Junior at Desert Pines, told the Jaguar Post about the 5-day pause was an unexpected announcement.

“I think it [The Five-day pause] did come out of the blue,” Lewis said, adding, “but I definitely expected it.”

The board has also been at odds with the district Superintendent. 

In June of 2020, the board of trustees voted to terminate Superintendent Jesus Jara’s contract. According to a Nevada Independent article, “the vote to terminate Jara’s contract was “for convenience,” meaning that the trustees didn’t need a particular reason to terminate him. He was fired in October. However, the board voted again in November 2021 and reverse their decision. He returned in December of 2021.

Principal Issac Stein stated that his return made a positive impact on the school.

“Bringing the superintendent back, I say it’s made a positive impact,” Stein said. “Superintendent supports Desert Pines High School and he supports the work we’re doing.” 

John Suzuki, An English 11 teacher at Desert Pines who has been working in CCSD for 5 years, seemed to disagree with Principal Stein’s opinion.

“Given the amount of tension especially between himself, the administrators, as well as the teacher’s union,” Suzuki said, “I’m not one-hundred percent sure that he [Jara] should still be superintendent.”

Thomas Depuit, a Biology and Chemistry teacher at Desert Pines who has been working in CCSD since 2007, was also interviewed for this story.  

“It hasn’t been a great effect [on teachers] at the moment,” Depuit said.