RGCCISD Superintendents Discuss How They're Sharing District Leadership
RIO GRANDE CITY – The Rio Grande City Consolidated Independent School District is still operating under two superintendents.
In spite of the pending legal decision that will determine who stays and who goes, the superintendents say they're working as a team with a common goal in mind.
The same week Vilma Garza signed her contract, she moved in to her position as Rio Grande City CISD superintendent.
It's a familiar set-up for Interim Superintendent Roel Gonzalez who served as superintendent eleven years for the same district.
He explains, "Mrs. Garza was my assistant superintendent when I was here last time. So, last time we worked together for eleven and a half years. So, we know each other. We respect each other."
Garza says they collaborate every day. "I will call him or he will call me, and let me know, 'I've handled this, I've handled that,'" she said.
Team work is expected in a school setting.
This situation is unprecedented in the district, "but what helps is maybe all those years of experience," says Gonzalez. "You address things calmly. You address things methodically," he added.
Gonzalez and Garza both have about 40 years each in the education field.
Normally, Garza's first day would have signaled the end of the interim superintendent's term. This time, though, a judge will determine when that day will come; it's all over disputes raised by trustees.
Right now, the superintendents are focused on summer programs.
Their funding was approved a while ago, said Gonzalez. "Everything was approved a while back. So, all the budgets were approved. So, everything is going as if it were a regular day," he explained.
Garza says they're moving forward with plans previously established. She says, "Mr. Gonzalez started several new initiatives that, in my opinion, we need them. And, they will help us improve instruction. So, we're moving forward with some of these initiatives."
Summer classes and their nutrition program are running without delay; Garza tells us she's talking, listening, and looking to future deadlines.
A budget is due in August; she's working with the CFO and departments with a large staff to look at finances.
She assures, "The intent is not to fire anybody. The intent is to maybe restructure where as some of our program funds can actually help us with some of our salary costs."
Both superintendents agree helping children progress is their main priority.
Both parties with pending litigation in the Fourth Court of Appeals have until the end of this week to file their responses.
The court will determine whether to affirm the lower court's decision, remand or reverse it.
There's also a motion filed to dismiss this altogether.