(Community Matters) I had lunch this week with an old friend who I haven’t seen in ages, Elizabeth Gonzales. Elizabeth is a board member of SW Key and East Austin College Prep. She’s absolutely convinced both do outstanding work (while acknowledging the growing pains at the school). I’ve mentioned before in previous postings that when I toured SW Key facilities in Dallas and Houston in the early 90s, I was impressed with their work. I even helped them secure a sizable bank line of credit. Elizabeth also assures me Juan doesn’t have any equity interests in vendors or contractors doing business with SW Key or the school.
A couple of months ago, I had lunch with Leo Ramirez who’s gone to work for Juan Sanchez. I have incredible respect for Leo and his integrity. And, today Leo told me his dad might be doing some work for the school. For those who don’t know, Mr. Ramirez is legendary. He was a math teacher in McAllen who nurtured, cajoled and mentored many Valley students to go on to Ivy League colleges.
Where am I at with SW Key & East Austin College Prep? I’d like to believe the boards have thoroughly vetted the concerns about lack of financial transparency. I’m impressed that Elizabeth, Leo and his dad are involved. I remain sympathetic to the concerns expressed by parents and past & current employees to me directly or through this blog. I am encouraged but not yet endorsing nor willing to support funding.