El Paso Independent School District trustees will get some guidance from business leaders on the district's road to recovery.
EPISD has been dealing with the fallout of having an admitted fellon for an ex-superintendent and ongoing federal investigations regarding an administrator cheating scandal.
At a packed board meeting Tuesday, trustees approved the creation of a Community Leaders Advisory Committee and appointed Dr. Jimmy Vasquez as its head.
Jimmy Vasquez runs the Education Service Center Region 19, which is a regional state entity that provides support and services for school districts.
Though he is an education expert with years of experience, Vasquez told ABC-7 he does not want his committee to be comprised of educators.
"I'll bring in a lay committee that does not work with schools. I hope this committee will bring objective, clear-headed suggestions and recommendations form business people who run large organizations or belong to large organizations," said Vasquez.
He added the idea is to get a fresh perspective to find new, creative solutions to EPISD's problems from respected community members with no political agendas or particular biases. He said he will train committee members so they have a better understanding of how school districts work before they brainstorm ideas to present.
Vasquez said he envisions the committee to have about 12 members chosen from either the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce or Community En Accion, which is an organization of local Hispanic leaders.
"It has to be big enough to be inclusive, but small enough to tbe effective," said Vasquez. He said committee members are still being recommended, recruited and vetted.
EPISD trustees are expecting a set of recommendations from the committee on how to better manage its business and oversee staff. Vasquez said it hopes to have that ready in 3 to 6 weeks.
At Tuesday's board meeting, trustees said they would put off starting the search for a new superintendent until the committee had presented its recommendations.
Vasquez said the recommendations will just be suggestions and that the board can decide which ones to implement at its discretion. He said as far as he's concerned, this is a special committee that will not meet again after its recommendations are presented to the board.