Says he appreciates the teamwork board is showing

Christopher Maher, Jim Wells County Correspondent

Members of the San Diego Independent School District Board of Trustees threw their unanimous support behind Superintendent Luis Pizzini Wednesday, approving a two-year contract extension for the superintendent.

Board President Javier Solis thanked Pizzini for his work in his first two years as superintendent, which often included difficult battles with previous board members.

"I want to thank you for standing your ground. We had some pretty tough battles this past year," Solis said. "You've taken us to another level, and I think we're on the right path."

Librada Vela, a newly elected board member, introduced the motion to offer Pizzini the contract extension, which will be effective through 2010.

"I think it's the start of a new era, and I really have hope for you. I see good things," Vela said. "As a team, I think we can really move forward and take the kids where we have to take them."

Board vice-president Pete Guerra urged Pizzini to continue to bring items to the board that would help move the district forward.

"I hope you continue being aggressive in the district," Guerra said. "We're about to start the new school, and we've got a good fund balance, but I want to get more aggressive on academics."

Pizzini thanked the board for its support Wednesday and said he hoped to see continued growth in the district.

"There's many, many more important decisions that are going to have to be made, starting with academics," Pizzini said. "We're going to have to take the good and continue to improve it, and the things that aren't working out so well, we're going to have to change them."

Pizzini said some of those decisions would not be easy for the board to make.

"There's a lot of important decisions we're going to have to make in the next couple of months," Pizzini said. "Some are going to be unpopular, but we're going to have to make them if we're going to continue to improve the district."

Pizzini said he appreciated the teamwork the board had shown so far, and he said continued teamwork would be necessary as the board moved forward with the construction of the new elementary school and in working to improve student scores.

"I'd like to thank you for having confidence in me as the superintendent to lead the district in the right and positive direction," Pizzini said.

"And thank you for the future support you've promised me. We can only move forward if we work as a team."