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Sweetwater Union High School District superintendent Ed Brand’s request for funds to employ a private investigation agency, to be used at his discretion, was withdrawn by staff at the September 24 board meeting.

Brand argued that the firm, ESI International, is necessary to investigate employees. However, on September 6 an ESI investigator turned up at the door of Kathleen Cheers, a community advocate, who frequently speaks at board meetings.

Brand initially asked for $50,000 in December 2012 for ESI. He came back to the board on August 19 asking for an additional $65,172 to pay for invoices already received during the 2012–2013 school year. Brand also asked the trustees to approve $100,000 to employ the company for the next school year.

Cheers stated that she was out of the house when investigator Christopher Jensen came to her house. He left his card. Cheers told the board, “I was one of Ed Brand’s targets. I spoke to a former vice president of a Fortune 500 company who worked in an investigative department — he said when you spend close to $200 k, that could entail tailing and dumpster diving…. What is Ed Brand looking for? Why is he so paranoid? Who else is his target?”

Cheers shows up to board meetings and bond-oversight committee meetings armed with data and research. According to Cheers, the investigator wanted to know where she obtained the information she used to make a point at a bond meeting. During an interview, Cheers showed the Reader proof that she obtained it from the district website.

Kevin O’Neill, another community member who addressed the board, said, “If you’re losing tires out of the bus barn, if you’re losing steaks out of the cafeteria, you go to the DA or the local police. He [Brand] should not be investigating any of you [trustees]; that is wrong on so many levels, not the least of which is he owes his job to you and you don’t want him to have anything over you…. If he’s investigating civilians you’re opening yourself to some fairly severe liability; this [investigator] has no police powers and he should never have approached a citizen without a phone call first.”

Brand told the trustees that ESI had initially been engaged two and a half years ago, when 50 or 60 food-service employees were “thought to be doing something inappropriate.” He continued, “they have due process rights, as we all do, so we contracted an outside third party.”

In further presenting his case, Brand said ESI has capabilities and “can access emails and cell phones and connect the dots.”

Brand also pointed out that the district has over 5000 employees and “you may not hear the word ESI when we do our monthly deliberation about employees or discipline issues, but sometimes the facts that are brought forward to HR is because of the information brought forward by ESI…. Sometimes we investigate and find out it’s just rumor.”

Trustee Pearl Quiñones stated: “I can’t vote on something when I don’t even know what I’m voting for, when I don’t even know what he’s investigating…. I’ve heard rumors, but I’ve never received an update.” She pointed out that the request for funding stated that the superintendent would update the board.

Trustee Bertha Lopez said she only remembers seeing a three-sentence update in July on what ESI was doing; she wants a detailed report. She also is concerned that the superintendent went $65,000 over budget without board consent. Lopez said, “I’m kind of perplexed…because if my principal was to say you only have $100 to go and spend on teaching supplies and if I go and spend $170, do you think the principal is going to pay me the $70? Heck, no; he’s only going to pay me the $100.”

At this point, the board took a short recess. During the recess, trustee John McCann, who had just returned to his position after recovering from a car accident, left the meeting. When the remaining trustees returned to the dais, the clerk of the board announced that “staff has withdrawn the item.”

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Comments

shirleyberan Sept. 24, 2013 @ 8:36 p.m.

Susan - I've been waiting for your investigative report. That was one of the strangest requests for an obvious waist of school money. Mental and abusive.

5

Visduh Sept. 24, 2013 @ 9:37 p.m.

Why is Eddie so paranoid? The answer(s) should be obvious.

When he sends a PI to visit a citizen who speaks out at meetings, and the PI gives no warning of the visit, there is one and only one reason. That is to intimidate. I don't know whether to laugh or cry about the board, but for once, and maybe for all the wrong reasons, members questioned something from Eddie, and he backed down. He wants bucks to hire his own little Gestapo to hound citizens who question the governance of the district. Or is this more like the KGB? Whatever it is, this is just one more outrageous move on his part to silence opposition and ride roughshod over those who dare to object.

7

miagd Sept. 24, 2013 @ 9:47 p.m.

The culture of fear in the SUHSD has lasted too long. Thanks to all those who are not stopped by bully tactics.

7

anniej Sept. 24, 2013 @ 9:53 p.m.

shirleyberan - many calls have gone out to other districts asking how much they pay Private Investigators - one response I believe says it all - "when you consider the fact that SUHSD is involved in an upcoming case of allegations of corruption I find it absurd that your superintendent Ed Brand is spying on community members".

Cheers' name is mentioned in the corruption case as a community member who spoke to the DA and FBI asking for help.

In any event the question that needs to be answered is this 'why, when Brand alleged that he is using a company that has the ability to access emails and cell phones, a totally illegal act did the board sit there and say NOTHING, not one word of admonishment'. Do you think ESI knows that Brand alleged that?, bet they do now. But what the hey, those $10,000.00 fines, our tax dollars will pay for them, Maybe Brand could get the money out of the account that has the alleged missing ASB monies from Bounce Back.

My South Bay neighbors I hope you are understanding the seriousness of this issue. Close to 200k spent for a Private I. As O'Neill stated that kind of investigation is for the DA and police officials - that is what our 'other' tax dollars pay for.

Our superintendent is painting a portrait of our board members that is less than flattering.

Now for the icing on the cake, Tom Hassey, part time teacher and good old boy friend of Brand was there - and had the nerve to compare the Compact for Success to Alliant - he, failed to compare the most important difference other than cost - the GPA requirement for the Compact was 3.5, now is 3.0 - Alliant, I believe is a 2.0 or is it a 2.5. Seems like a teacher would/should know that fact.

What Brand has failed to acknowledge is this, those persons in the community that he and certain board members have placed on SUHSD MOST WANTED POSTERS were the ones who told Brand what was going on in the Food Services Dept., and Castle Park missing ASB funds, and the massaged numbers, and, and, and - but here he sits acting like HE SAVED THE DAY - no wonder he is paranoid!!!!!!!

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eastlaker Sept. 25, 2013 @ 1:56 p.m.

Very nice!

What about a country song: "Hogtied by the Lies", performed by Fast Eddy and his backup trio, the Yessirs!

3

oskidoll Sept. 25, 2013 @ 6:11 a.m.

Quite a puzzlement indeed. I must wonder why Fast Eddy hired ESI if he believes that employees should be investigated....that is what Shinoff and his legal pals do within the context of EDUCATION AND EMPLOYMENT LAW.. At least, one assumes that Dan and his legal investigators fully understand individual rights, and perhaps were unwilling to do Ed's bidding going after community members and others in such a shady manner.

I smell another Brand rat trying to intimidate not only employees but members of the public whose tax money Brand is frittering away. We already know Ed does not believe in the Brown Act, and it is becoming apparent that he does not understand or care to honor our rights as taxpayers and citizens.

6

Susan Luzzaro Sept. 25, 2013 @ 7:09 a.m.

bvagency, your blog cracked me up , even though the subject is more than serious.

You've thrown down a new blog challenge.

So here is how I feel when I come home from a board meeting @ 11:00

6

eastlaker Sept. 25, 2013 @ 7:48 a.m.

Is Fast Eddy running scared? Is he starting to realize, in the classic sense, that everyone is on to him and his tricks?

Of course, maybe hiring private investigators is something he has done in the past. I really hate to say it, but maybe that is why some of the board members are so completely ruled by him. Maybe Fast Eddy 'gets the goods' on them, so they do what he wants.

It does sound more like organized crime than a school board and a school district, but what other explanation can there be? That would explain quite a few of the decisions that have been made.

4

anniej Sept. 25, 2013 @ 8:19 a.m.

DONNA FRYE attended the board meeting and spoke. She offered to have one of the organizations she works with come down to SUHSD and help them with Brown Act issues - but,,,,, also reminded them that there were attorneys who worked with this group as well.

Government of the people, by the people and for the people - why would the SUHSD. Board and Ed Brand need to be reminded of what this country is all about.

Why would John McCann and Jim Cartmill need to be reminded of the importance of following the laws of the Brown Act?

Ed Brand is completely out of control, but did he just get this way? Let us not forget this is the same man who allegedly locked the head of Categorical out of her office - when she and a student found that there was some alleged funny business going on with these funds. Her attorney at the time reported he had his windows shot out.

5

eastlaker Sept. 25, 2013 @ 1:50 p.m.

Yes, anniej, there are problems in Sweetwater that can no longer be hidden via shifts in accounts.

Wouldn't it be great to get that full-scale investigation into Sweetwater's finances going back at least 15 years? Because when Ed Brand departed under a cloud the last time, he didn't want anyone looking into anything too closely.

And problems of this nature do not mend themselves.

4

Greenville Sept. 25, 2013 @ 8:38 a.m.

A couple of thoughts--first of which is this intimidation of Ms. Cheers. Catherine, you are certainly not the only one to contact the DA regarding the numerous grievances raised over the years re campaign funding and illegal allocation of tax payer money. Many teachers also called the DA office over the years. And therein lies the problem. These teachers are employed by the district they are reporting. Whistle blowers never survive the process, regardless of what the law says. And most of these teachers don't live or vote in the district. So much for campaigning and signing petitions. I am horrified to learn of these expenditures for private investigative services. Safe to assume that union activists have had emails examined.

6

Ensenadamaria Sept. 25, 2013 @ 8:53 a.m.

The list is now complete. All of the community members named in the search warrant documents appear to have faced some type of harassment. Is the District Attorney paying attention to this?

5

Susan Luzzaro Sept. 25, 2013 @ 8:54 a.m.

Articles come out from consecutive board meetings in pieces; however, if we review the articles we are able to form a composite picture. The Reader has reported on a number of alleged instances of intimidation, or actual incidents that were perceived as attempts to intimidate.

5

anniej Sept. 25, 2013 @ 9:09 a.m.

Greenville you are most certainly correct - Cheers was accompanied by three other individuals that day, the fourth was unable to attend.

For the record, long before the five came together there were others, who tried to fight the good fight. They are the unsung heroes, they are the foundation for the indictments. Many of those of which I speak were/are teachers and I am told even some Administrators and District staff.

One of the five Ms. Adato, was involved in the Grand Jury investigation of Prop BB monies long before Cheers arrived on the scene. That investigation appears to have sent Brand and a few others scurrying out of the District in his first tenure.

Bottom line, all of us are in this together, no one or even five stand out - as the song goes - WE ARE FAMILY (fighting the forces of alleged corruption).

5

angrybirds Sept. 25, 2013 @ 10:12 a.m.

OK peeps so they use our money to investigate the community and the community has no money to investigate them. There is something really wrong with this picture. They use the unlimited money for freaking attorneys and investigators for themselves hmmmm.

These board members really have their heads up Brands ass. Have these board members been playing in the poppy fields of the Oz again. Are they completely out of touch with reality, someone please tell us inquiring minds want to know.

5

Jmbrickley Sept. 25, 2013 @ 10:18 a.m.

"At this point, the board took a short recess. During the recess, trustee John McCann, who had just returned to his position after recovering from a car accident, left the meeting. When the remaining trustees returned to the dais, the clerk of the board announced that “staff has withdrawn the item.”

Of course staff withdrew the item. Without John's favorable vote, the item would have failed with a 2-2 vote. Better to bring it up again later when a favorable outcome is certain.

5

shirleyberan Sept. 25, 2013 @ 10:28 a.m.

Don't Sociopaths set up a situation they can appear to come in and solve to seem heroic? I said Cartmill when I meant McCann before, sorry sounds same.

4

Jmbrickley Sept. 25, 2013 @ 10:36 a.m.

In further presenting his case, Brand said ESI has capabilities and “can access emails and cell phones and connect the dots.”

Sorry Ed, but when you sic the investigator on private citizens who are engaged in lawful activity, you have crossed the line. It's way past time for you to go. Since your three "in the pocket" cronies on the board won't do it, it's time for them to be gone too. The combined failure that you and your leadership have brought to the South Bay is astonishing. You have brought nothing but further shame on what was once one of the best school districts in the state.

5

anniej Sept. 25, 2013 @ 11:42 a.m.

shirleyberan - 'Ed' could, but in order to change HE would have to want to - I do not think he wants to. He is what he is, and that is all that he is!

6

helenfarias Sept. 25, 2013 @ 2:24 p.m.

ACTION ALERT: This Saturday, 9/28, members of Sweetwater Education Association will be at BonitaFest collecting signatures for two petitions: one to establish term limits for our board, the other to establish representation boundaries. Please look for us by the Eastlake-Bonita Democrats' table, and spread the word to your friends and neighbors, too!

5

oskidoll Sept. 25, 2013 @ 2:37 p.m.

In a civilized school district, officials would welcome well-informed members of the community to the Bond oversight meetings, which are actually intended to keep the citizenry informed about the progress of implementation of the projects and spending of THEIR tax money. Officials would also HOPE that members of the public would attend the public board meetings and provide input as to the conditions and affairs of the district.

However, in our corrupt and despotic school district, members of the community who attempt to be informed and participate in the process are disrespected and bullied by the Superintendent's private investigators who are charged with 'connecting the dots'....what exactly is it they have done to deserve such ire from the person who is paid a huge salary with PUBLIC money and supposedly entrusted to implement the programs?

In a civilized school district, interested and informed members of the public are welcomed and even encouraged to participate in the process. Let's all work together to make SUHSD a civilized school district. We can THROW THE BUMS OUT and should be working NOW to organize to make sure Ricasa, Cartmill, and McCann are never again elected to public office.

What we have now is a true dictatorship with a truly evil and vindictive despot and his Gestapo henchmen. This is shameful beyond belief.

6

Wabbitsd Sept. 25, 2013 @ 3:13 p.m.

I'd sure like to know how Brand can call investigating members of the public a legitimate educational expense? I believe it is time now to bombard the District Attorney's office with copies of all these postings. If Ms. Dumanis does not see wrongdoing in all this, then the cards are out for all to see, that Republicans, under her watch, get a pass.

6

oskidoll Sept. 25, 2013 @ 4:09 p.m.

Dumanis likely believes that the indictments and approaching trials are enough. It took much investigation to get to that point, and that was relatively 'easy' because the major evidence was the Form 700s (Statements of Economic Interest) that the indicted officials perjured themselves on. Those who gave the indicted trustees gifts that were not reported by the indicted trustees were relatively easy to identify.

I am not implying that the indictments were easy to come by, but they were likely the most logical places to start because the evidence was in individual's calendars and email accounts and some public records.

Trying to follow the yellow brick road in Ed Brand's land of OZ is likely much more difficult because there is so much bobbing and weaving and covering of tracks and speaking with forked tongue. Ed is slippery and so are his henchmen...they are not simpletons on the take, as it appears those who were indicted trustees and their benefactors seem to be.

I think the way to get Ed and Co is through Federal law: misappropriation of Federal $$, violation of FERPA, etc. The State of CAlifornia seems to be weak in the enforcement department, and alas, there is no Brown Act patrol or posse to keep them on the straight and narrow. And we know that the County Board of Education is in Ed's pocket.

Who is going to order up a Forensic Audit? It is the role of the County Board of Education to make sure School Districts fiscal operations are aligned with State Law, but they have no interest in rocking Ed's boat.

Individuals who believe they have been threatened have a heavy burden of proof, and Ed knows that.

I hope I am wrong. Keep complaining and making noise about the travesty to whichever authorities will listen and take the call. We have to keep hammering, but I don't see Dumanis taking up any more time with SUHSD....at least they are posed to prosecute those who are indicted and I do hope they are not cutting any deals. We need the Trustees to be convicted of FELONIES because with felony convictions, they cannot serve as trustees!

4

WTFEd Sept. 25, 2013 @ 9:30 p.m.

I do not know what is worse having a PI investigator at my door or my email monitored at work. I am sure they know I am not stoopid enough to do anything dumb. It is not like this stuff that is told is not common knowledge in the District. I know what is worse than a PI at our door that would be an hour one on one with Tom Hassey. A buffoon of the highest order. He should take up lawn bowling in Balboa Park of playing Bridge with people who like their martinis beginning about 11:00 in the morning. How does Ed live with himself.

5

shirleyberan Sept. 25, 2013 @ 10:11 p.m.

WTFEd - he doesn't give what he does a second thought.

4

Qar Sept. 27, 2013 @ 7:10 a.m.

Hmmm, I don't see anything in my letter about installing the district email on my personal computer. I believe you are mistaken on that point.

0

Qar Sept. 30, 2013 @ 7:01 a.m.

Interestingly enough, my phone did the same. However, I am blaming it in ios7 myself. I find it fascinating that a simple statement, which was not addressed in your reply, tilts me towards the dark side. Are we so blinded by hatred that we cannot be questioned? Is not that the dark side?

0

bvagency Sept. 26, 2013 @ 8:01 a.m.

LaLucha, whatever you do, DO NOT load or use the district email on your personal computer. If you do, this will allow Brands investigators to look at the content of your computer. The MADMAN is on a witch hunt and is trying to bully and intimidate you.

You are not legally required to do this, so do not do it!!!

Again, this type of action by Ed Brand is an outrage!!

6

anniej Sept. 26, 2013 @ 9:12 a.m.

LaLucha - it is my understanding the employees will have to enroll for this years benefits on line. I would HIGHLY recommend that all employees use District computers to complete the enrollment.

While I have not read the correspondence you received I would question the authority of Ed Brand to mandate any employee use any personal device for a work related task. (just my opinion).

Let us not forget it was Ed Brand himself, who stated publicly, that the PI firm he chose was due to their ability access emails and cell phones.

NEED I SAY MORE?

5

johndewey Sept. 26, 2013 @ 9:34 a.m.

LaLucha: This is something that should be brought to the union's attention immediately. Brand's directive to get the district email on home computers first of all assumes everyone has a home computer and secondly, it sounds like a negotiable item since one's refusal to agree would more than likely bring reprimand. Don't collective bargaining rights protect members from having to sign these types of agreements on an individual basis?

5

Wabbitsd Sept. 26, 2013 @ 1:26 p.m.

I've seen the Union present at board meetings, but their voice is conspicuously absent when the rights of techers and district employees are being run into the ground. I agree, where is the Union in protesting this violation of their members' privacy?

5

angrybirds Sept. 26, 2013 @ 9:36 a.m.

WTH is going on here. Where is the oh so powerful union requesting a legal opinion about this stuff. Hey union start protecting your employees or do you just collect the dues and go on your merry way.

This man is freaking bonkers he has lost his marbles. Paranoia will get to you quick fast eddy it will eat you alive.

6

helenfarias Sept. 26, 2013 @ 2:02 p.m.

SEA will ensure that the policy does not impact our members' contractual rights, and our teachers ability to perform their jobs effectively. Internal communication will be sent out to unit members when we have answers.

6

Ensenadamaria Sept. 26, 2013 @ 1:12 p.m.

What are we waiting for? If you listen to the audio you will not hear any board member come to the defense of Catherine Cheers, not even Lopez. Not one question of clarification was asked of Calhoun. The board was totally disinterested in the proof Cheers said she had.

7

oskidoll Sept. 26, 2013 @ 1:43 p.m.

It appears the Brand Gestapo is in full assault mode. My GOD, what is going on here????. While Ed demands that employees use personal computers to access District email , he refuses to provide the public with the District records and documents TO WHICH THEY ARE ENTITLED, even when the Public Records Act is cited. Anyone see the irony here?

He is deranged and behaving like a cornered rabid dog.

8

Susan Luzzaro Sept. 26, 2013 @ 3:44 p.m.

angry birds, The SCEA president did speak several times at the meeting. Offhand, I recall two issues. One was that the district is not following the contract on progressive discipline. The other one was that he pressed the district, as did the former president, to disclose how much money the charter schools are taking in and how much the district has spent on establishing them. At this point the charters schools owe the district money...more on that..

while I am thinking about detail, during the budget discussion Ms. Cheers established that the district is deficit spending. This was confirmed later in the discussion by the CFO.

7

Susan Luzzaro Sept. 26, 2013 @ 3:48 p.m.

Of interest, Wendy Fry has tweeted that ESI, the detective company, was also used in the San Ysidro district.

WendyFry ‏@WendyNBCSD 25 Sep The company in this article : http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/20... … Is the same company that went to TJ in San Ysidro district: http://media.nbcsandiego.com/documents/Paul+emails+A.pdf

7

Wabbitsd Sept. 27, 2013 @ 2:41 p.m.

Ms. Luzzaro, is there any way to find out who the principals are in this ESI company? how have they been selected?

5

eastlaker Sept. 27, 2013 @ 6:31 p.m.

Wabbitsd, those are some good questions!

I googled, and found out that there is a website for ESI, licensed in Florida and Texas.

There is another listing for Orange County and a mention of San Diego, but that link doesn't pull up anything substantial.

I don't know if the CA ESI private investigatory companies are connected with the Florida and Texas company, or just piggybacking on their name. (And if the latter is the case, that's not really ethical, is it?)

Happened to notice one other item from the Florida and Texas ESI site:

"ESI will unveal (sic) those filing false-claims (sic) in the litigation and insurance field (sic)"

I hope they didn't pay top dollar for their website creation!

5

eastlaker Sept. 26, 2013 @ 4:05 p.m.

I am wondering what the real meaning might be regarding the DA's withdrawal of several SWC/Sweewater/San Ysidro counts.

More deals being made?

How can we get the complete financial story of Sweetwater, warts and all? Who will come clean?

Who will call Ed Brand on his felonious behavior?

6

oskidoll Sept. 26, 2013 @ 6:27 p.m.

My take is that unless the FBI enters the picture, Ed is ensconced in his king's throne until and unless the current Board is unseated or replaced with trustees who have the best interests of the students and the public...Only the Board can fire Fast Eddy and the majority seem to think he is doing just fine.

5

Wabbitsd Sept. 27, 2013 @ 2:42 p.m.

Have any community members contacted the District Attorney's office with complaints?

3

anniej Sept. 26, 2013 @ 9 p.m.

Why would any board member trust Ed Brand? The board needs to learn from the lesson of John McCann; it appears that Brand told two different stories. He was telling people that Pearl Quinones and Bertha Lopez asked him to go to Flores to ask for campaign monies - but, on the stand he said it was John McCann and Pearl Quinones. My point, Brand takes care of Brand -the board members need to remember all of those persons who invested in his and Tom Hassey's bank - when it failed did Brand look out for the friends who had trusted him? The answer would be NO! According to comments I have read by a spurned investor he and Hassey simply walked away - the innocents, lost everything.

All of the media attention that will be focused on SUHSD - all of the testimony that will finally be made public (remember those Grand Jury testimonies we read, were only the tip of the iceberg). You think Brand is going to protect anyone? Well if you are naive to believe so I have some swamp land that you could easily turn into vineyards that would make some great Merlot. I have no doubt that after throwing them all under the bus when he takes the stand he will turn around and try to sell himself to the new board.

I point to the fact that Brand sent a PI knocking on an activists door simply because - HE COULD!!!!!!!!!!! I point to the fact that Brand sat up at the dais and said 'I hired this particular firm because they can access emails and cell phones' simply because - HE COULD!!!!!!!!!! Did he care about the fallout to the board members, one of which is most certainly planning on staying in the political arena - not one thought to the negative press!!!!!! Did he care about the damage to the firm he had hired - claiming that they had the ability or should I say stupidity to break the law by accessing private info without a warrant - NO

THIS IS IMPORTANT - Cheers had told Calhoun how she found the info - he and Brand had at least three days to verify that the information was readily available to the public - THEY CHOSE NOT TO VERIFY. Brand chose instead to use this as an opportunity to make an example of Cheers, 'see what I have the power to do to anyone who dares cross me'.

In closing, to the authorities monitoring this situation - it goes without saying, this is blatant intimidation by Ed Brand of a person named in the search warrant documents and the blatant admission of illegal measures being paid for with tax dollars is unacceptable.

Questions:

What will the board do?

What will Cheers do?

5

eastlaker Sept. 26, 2013 @ 9:46 p.m.

When people stop thinking clearly, problems multiply. And Brand has stopped thinking clearly. He might be under the impression he is just fine, but he would be wrong.

The problem is that he is still in a position of power, and is spending money very profligately--and no one is stopping him.

He is also very lacking in good judgment, so it looks like things could get worse before they get better.

I am thinking that Fast Eddy should have a caretaker sidekick, one that could keep him out of trouble. But does Eddy know anyone who would be capable? Not really, he seems only to know those who are culpable.

3

angrybirds Sept. 27, 2013 @ 9:36 a.m.

Definition of the superintendent of SUHSD:

Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance and a deep need for admiration. Those with narcissistic personality disorder believe that they're superior to others and have little regard for other people's feelings. But behind this mask of ultra-confidence lies a fragile self-esteem, vulnerable to the slightest criticism.

Worst part about it is I found this in one of my kids textbooks from school.

5

eastlaker Sept. 27, 2013 @ 11:16 a.m.

Good find, angrybirds! "Vulnerable to the slightest criticism"--maybe that's how Fast Eddy started to build his little cadre of Protection, which has grown into all the layers separating him from reality. Some of that Protection would be his own defense mechanisms, some would be the people in his corner--or under his thumb--or in his pocket--or who are simply complicit because having Fast Eddy running things in his inimitable crooked fashion is just too, too convenient, for all sorts of reasons.

Please forgive that run-on sentence.

But, for any of you out there who think that Ed Brand should be in charge of anyone's education, let along the largest secondary school district in the country....just what do you think Fast Eddy is teaching the students?

Nothing good.

4

oskidoll Sept. 27, 2013 @ 12:50 p.m.

They got Al Capone for tax evasion. The devil is in the details, and that is why Fast Eddy is so reluctant to show anyone the financial books. Here's a reminder, they are the records of how he is spending our money.

7

Susan Luzzaro Sept. 27, 2013 @ 8 p.m.

Here is the website for ESI International based in San Diego

http://www.esi-int.com/index.html

5

anniej Sept. 28, 2013 @ 9:29 a.m.

Ms. Luzzaro:

I see ESI does forensic audits, hell since they are getting paid hundreds of thousands why not put their efforts to good use and have them perform such an audit on SUHSD's books - not that would be money well spent.

6

Visduh Sept. 28, 2013 @ 4:37 p.m.

An excellent link. While this Poway situation has no direct influence on the Sweetwater mess, reading about this new board member who refused to march in lockstep with the other four members of the board was inspiring. She's the sort of person every board member should be, and what SUHSD sorely needs five of.

7

anniej Sept. 29, 2013 @ 8:34 a.m.

I applaud Ms. Beatty and her efforts.

There is much going on in our District that is not known to the voters. Question is which Board members know.

Let us remember we were told recently that 'we are broke'

Let us remember the 'borrowing ' from Mello

Let us remember the budget presentation this month

Let us remember the District is expecting those who actually 'educate' our student are being expected to go without raises for how mow many years? - while friends of Brands like Susie Mitchell seem to be getting increases that NOONE, not even board members are aware of.

ON LINE PETITION ANYONE? THOUSANDS OF SIGNATURES SENT TO THE AUTHORITIES DEMANDING A FORENSIC AUDIT OF OUR TAX DOLLARS - EVERY ACCOUNT DISSECTED -

5

eastlaker Sept. 29, 2013 @ 12:36 p.m.

Yes to the forensic audit, but let's make sure ESI is not in charge of it...!!!

I think we will have to find a group with a much better reputation.

5

anniej Sept. 29, 2013 @ 10:09 a.m.

Wabbitsd - At this point if the DA were to investigate all thatbisnwrong with SUHSD they would need to hire a second staff. Other authorities have reached out, SUHSD has garnered interest. These are after all State and Federal funds that are being spent. God helps those who help themselves' - we can not expect the DA to fight all of our battles - we are perfectly capable of bringing about change. Might I remind you of the Hilltop meeting or the Southwest Meeting.

Beware of false prophets - any guesses on what I am referring to?

Point of interest - when Cheers attempted to show proof of how she found the info - Jim Cartmill directed her to Brands assistant, not taking even a moment to look at it - In other words "I don't care, because I am not interested". That one exchange CHANGED EVERYTHING ----------

You see that is what is wrong with our board - when it comes to serving their constituents of their political office -

THEY REALLY JUST DON'T CARE!!!!!!!!!

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eastlaker Sept. 30, 2013 @ 12:30 p.m.

They don't care because the status quo serves their purposes.

As we all know, that status quo is diametrically opposed to the good of the district, the students, the teachers and the taxpayers.

We need that forensic accounting report!

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Wabbitsd Sept. 30, 2013 @ 1:41 p.m.

Anniej...I did a little digging, the name "Robert Price, with ESI" sounded familiar. He turned out to be the person who did the "investigation" into the issues Helix had some years back with improprieties between teachers and students, and also in the MiraCosta College scandal regarding the sale/money involved in selling palm trees. I don't know the underlying story behine the Mira Costa situation, but I (and many others) surely felt the investigator was selected primarily to discredit the CEO of Helix Charter...a very visible thorn in the Grossmt. Board of Trustees' sides.

Ms. Cheers continues to earn my admiration.

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