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CCISD board meets for first time since Longoria search

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Posted at 7:45 PM, Nov 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-17 23:37:32-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The Corpus Christi Independent School District Board of Trustees met Tuesday for their first meeting since the Federal Bureau of Investigation searched the home of board member John Longoria.

Last week FBI agents removed boxes and a computer from Longoria's home on Denver Ave. Agents also searched the offices of Fulton Construction.

Longoria did take part in Tuesday's school board meeting, though he attended virtually. CCISD board president Janie Bell calls the events that have unfolded unfortunate.

“At this point we knew exactly what we knew last week, we have no further information,” said Bell. “It's a process that's going to happen, it's going to take place and hopefully will be resolved soon, rather than later.”

There has also been no comment from Longoria and no update from the FBI on their investigation.

On the school board's agenda Tuesday was canvassing votes from the recent election and the swearing-in of new at-large CCISD trustee, Don Clark.

This meeting, however, was also one of the last for district 4 representative Catherine Susser.

Susser confirmed via text message that she submitted her resignation six weeks ago. Even though she's submitted her resignation... she'll stay on the board until early next year.

“She is still a board member until her replacement comes on board,” said Bell.

Susser resigned because she isn’t living in Corpus Christi. “I am now in Dallas most of the time and simply could not juggle my board responsibilities to the level the community deserves,” she said via text.

Meanwhile, Corpus Christi American Federation of Teachers President, Dr. Nancy Vera asks “why weren’t we told about this when it happened?”

Vera says she heard of Susser’s resignation shortly after it happened six weeks ago.

“She had resigned from the school board about six weeks ago,” Vera said Tuesday morning. “I knew it, but yet CCISD itself still has not made an announcement that she has resigned.”

CCISD eventually announced Susser’s resignation and posted her resignation letter Tuesday afternoon, though the district says it was tendered October 29th.

The CCISD Board of Trustees will now pick Susser’s replacement. Bell says the district waited until after the election so that any new members would have a say in Susser’s successor.

“She really hoped she’d be able to be here and serve her position, and serve the many other things she’s done in this community,” said Bell.

Susser echoed those sentiments saying via text that “it has been a very difficult decision as I love CCISD, my position, and our community.”

Bell says the district will soon post the open position and accept applications through December, with a replacement hopefully named in January. If one isn't named by March, a special election will be called.

Susser attended Tuesday's meeting virtually. She saysshe plans to be at the December board meeting in person,

The school board also approved a two percent raise for the superintendent, Dr. Roland Hernandez based on performance and his being named a finalist for state Superintendent of the Year.

Vera called the raise "unconscionable."