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CISD residents complain about representation; Clint commissions study

Published On: Jan 16 2013 10:47:22 PM CST
Updated On: Aug 04 2014 08:35:57 PM CDT
EL PASO, Texas -

Residents have complained representation on the Clint Independent School Board is unfair, with a majority of board members coming from Clint, leaving Horizon City and Montana Vista without a seat.

Their outcry has led the board to commission a study on the districts demographics. Wednesday evening they released those results.

The study broke down the number of students in the feeder-patterns of Montana Vista, Clint and Horizon City.

The board is going to use these numbers to determine whether they should change their school board voting from at-large to single member.

The problem residents have with the current at-large system is that the same trustees keep winning, and they're all from Clint. They also claim Clint High students receive more funding than the other high schools.

"Ninety percent of the residents within the Clint School District live outside of Clint," said Mission Valley and Far East Commissioner Vince Perez. "However when you look at the school board 85% of the school board are from Clint. The reason you have this disparity is because of Clint's voting structure."

What Perez is saying is correct according the demographics study. The Horizon feeder pattern has the most students(21,283), with Montana Vista coming in second (13,913) and Clint, third (6,988).

But six of the school board members live in Clint, the seventh lives in Horizon, and those six are incumbents, serving on average 13 years. One member has been on the board for 22 years.

Right now the Paso del Norte Civil Rights Project has a pending lawsuit against the district. They're claiming the board funnels more money into Clint schools, and neglects the others.

Perez said if Clint changes from at-large voting to single member, like Ysleta, Socorro and El Paso ISD's, there could be individual trustees that represent specific areas.

"There needs to be reform now that Clint has grown significantly over the past years," Perez said. "They need to look at reforms of transitioning from an at large district to a single member district that will guarantee all neighborhoods throughout Clint will have represent on the school board."

The CISD Board President James Pendell declined to go on camera, but said in a statement they're going to review the preliminary data and take some time to consider what was presented before they determine how to proceed.

 

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