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Endorsement watch: HISD incumbents

The Chron sticks with the incumbents in the three contested HISD Trustee races.

For HISD Trustee in District III: Manuel Rodriguez Elected to the board in 2003, he was its president in 2007, when the district successfully passed an important bond to build 21 new schools and repair and remodel more than 100 others. He consistently supports Grier and Apollo 20.

For HISD Trustee in District IV: Paula Harris. Harris, currently board president, has been a forceful advocate for her district, and as board president, has pushed a consistent program of reforms to improve school performance. She has been a staunch ally of Grier and an advocate of Apollo 20. We have been seriously concerned by reports of fat HISD contracts awarded to her friends. But Harris says that she’s played by the rules, welcomes new, tighter ethics standards, and promises to avoid murky areas in the future.

For HISD Trustee in District VIII: Juliet Stipeche Elected in November 2010 to complete an unfinished term, Stipeche quickly proved herself a strong board member. She’s supported tighter ethics rules and a truly independent audit of HISD’s procurement system. An alumna of the district’s High School for Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice, she’s a strong supporter of high-performing magnet programs and in-district charter schools. We appreciate her diplomatic, thoughtful criticism of Grier and Apollo 20.

Based on their own reporting, that strongly suggests they want to see Superintendent Terry Grier’s contract extended after it expires next December. Be that as it may, Harris and Stipeche are clearly better qualified candidates than their opponents, while the Rodriguez/Fonseca matchup is closer to even. I thought Fonseca might have had the edge here since he won almost all of the endorsements from other organizations, but apparently not. (Campos, not surprisingly, vehemently disagrees with the Chron.) My interview with Paula Harris is here, with Juliet Stipeche is here, with Manuel Rodriguez is here, and with Ramiro Fonseca is here. What do you think?

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