Three Sonorans Note: We planned on writing about the strange contradiction in the internal auditor hiring process… about how TUSD simply COULD NOT hire one because it cost too much money, and now how HT Sanchez basically proved Cam Juarez is a weak coward by superseding the board and beginning the process to hire one himself. This group of TUSD Administrators beat me to it… Enjoy!
P.S. Word is that Adelita’s Mother-in-law may be hired to be the internal auditor. Why not… she got preferential treatment before!
Date: April 22, 2015
To: Open Letter to TUSD Community Members- 8th Letter
From: Extremely Concerned TUSD Administrators; Teachers and Parents
TUSD Supporters (Please distribute to others who are interested in the welfare of TUSD; teachers- please pass onto peers and parents pass on to other parents)
- Heliodoro Torres Sánchez Jr.’s Self-promoting Propaganda & His Double Standard
- Extracting the Independence OUT of the Audit Committee & Oh! By the Way Now There is Money to Hire an Internal Auditor!
- Rats, Rodents and Their Droppings
- Retaliation is Still Lurking -Will Heliodoro’s Spouse- Mary Sanchez find a HOLME at
Heliodoro Torres Sánchez Jr.’s Self-promoting Propaganda & His Double Standard Heliodoro Torres Sánchez Jr.’s very huge, but ironically fragile, ego attempts to counter whatever we have printed in our letters. We criticized his full-on public relations campaign on himself about his legislative lobbying efforts. Emails, videos, presentations and reports on his lobbying efforts, strongly have suggested that he and he alone, saved TUSD from the dreadful legislative bills that he testified against. No other superintendent has ever made so much to do about doing his job, which includes lobbying activities. We pointed this out in our last letter and he notably has decided to put his campaign on steroids. His PR person Stefanie Boe and he came up with a marketing piece which is simply outrageous and more overkill on his efforts. Heliodoro is now campaigning to be the best “testifier” at the Arizona Capital. His unrevised April 16th Superintendent’s Report was emailed out on Friday April 17th . Krystal Foster, his other PR agent, also emailed out his report to her list server, as she faithfully does every week. The report states:
“Best “Testifier” at the AZ Capital! Did you know there’s a competition for best testifier in the AZ Legislature? Did you know Dr. HT Sanchez is in the running? YES! If you’re a Arizona Capitol Times subscriber, vote for HT and TUSD today! Priority #4 under the Financial Goals of our Five-Year Strategic Plan is to “collaborate with the legislature to develop strong relationships that promote advocacy for education.” No one can argue with this nomination that we’re not working towards this!
Anyone wanting to vote for Heliodoro Torres, as su his PR agents Stephanie Boe and Krystal Foster and him, clicks on the link and discovers that only Arizona Capitol Times subscribers can vote for 2015 Best of the Capitol finalists and that a subscription costs $99. Out of curiosity, we clicked on the link. It is bad enough that Heliodoro, Stephanie and Krystal believe that it is appropriate to utilize staff time and ink to campaign for this shallow-self-serving effort but to expect TUSD employees and Krystal’s list server recipients to shove out 99 bucks to boost Heliodoro’s rapacious ego is outlandish! Krystal, like Tammy Wynnete, is on automatic pilot when it comes to standing by her puppeteer- Heliodoro. We took a look at the Superintendent’s Report on the TUSD website on April 20th and found that the above piece had been erased from the one sent out on April 17th. Too late, the offensive request already took place.
At last Tuesday’s Governing Board Meeting (April 14th) – some amazing things happened. Heliodoro continued on his chest-pounding self-ingratiating campaign and spend several very long minutes during his report- retelling the magnificence of his testifying before various legislative committees. He was boisterous in his report about his favorite topic-himself; speaking fast and very loud. Before he had completed his report, Foster began clapping, with Grijalva and Juarez immediately joining her. It was so out of sync, it even threw Heliodoro off his game for a minute. They are quite a team, the four of them; the puppeteer and his zombie applauding puppets.
The call to the audience was consumed by parents and students in support of their beloved baseball coach at Sahuaro who was suspended (mid-season) from his coaching position while an investigation was conducted on alleged financial improprieties and other student eligibility issues (as guessed by those close to the situation). The financial matter seems to have something to do with the failure to deposit money as is required along with the co-mingling of funds. Any amount of money must be deposited immediately and usually people wait until there is an amount worth depositing- otherwise it requires multiple trips to the bank. We have heard from those in the know that a disgruntled parent complained because her son was not being played at the level she wanted. Understand- we are not talking about hundreds of thousands of dollars!
The Arizona Daily Star’s April 19th article states, “Now Sahuaro, its coach and two star players are in limbo. The regular season ends in 10 days. I’ve long maintained that when the AIA and TUSD get involved at the administrative level, big or small, you can kiss your immediate high school sports journey goodbye.”
We held up sending this letter out due to the good news we heard that the Sahuaro coach will be returning to the field to coach. He should have never been suspended. (Remember when Sanchez was “investigated” by his Chief Legal Counsel, Julie Tolleson for his procurement indiscretions? He was not suspended while the investigation was conducted.) Double standard!
In drastic contrast to the dollars involved in the Sahuaro situation, one of our absolute favorite TUSD truth-tellers- Lillian Fox- also spoke during the call to the audience and pointed out that Heliodoro had, on his own, without board approval, directed that all TUSD retiring employees have their insurance paid for by the District through the end of the summer of each year. He started this last summer and it will continue for retirees this year.
Obviously, thousands upon thousands of dollars are being spent without board approval and on non-TUSD employees. Or perhaps retirement dates are being tampered with to make it appear as though retirees are still employees and allow for payment of benefits. It sure sounds like Heliodoro has decided to bequeath a gift of public funds. Has he not learned that he must follow proper fiduciary procedures? We all know the answer. We wonder if other funding is involved in this, such as Title I or desegregation funding. It appears as though a beloved coach is suspended while an investigation is conducted over the handling of baseball team funding (and student residency issues) that do not constitute a great deal of money, while Heliodoro does whatever he pleases with thousands upon thousands of tax-based dollars. Double standard! Not right! Not fair! And…another item that should be investigated.
Lillian Fox is a retired TUSD teacher who is dedicated to serving students. She regularly speaks out against this type of shenanigans. For a while, Heliodoro would literally walk out of the meeting while she spoke or if he remained at the dais, he would bury his face in his papers, looking down and scowling while she spoke. This guy has shown his immaturity in dealing with people for two years with no real consequences from his supervising body! For some reason he corrected his behavior and he now remains seated and pretends to listen to her. We think it through the exposure these letters have brought to his rude and bullying behavior that he now remains seated while Lillian speaks.
Extracting the Independence OUT of the Audit Committee & Oh! By the Way Now There is Money to Hire an Internal Auditor!
Without independent monitoring of TUSD’s finances, accountability of the budget is non-existent. No one knows this better than Heliodoro Torres, who has- from the time of his hire- attempted to play lose with TUSD dollars. Two historical examples follow but they have popped up over and over again since July of 2013. He essentially gave a lucrative contract away to a Texan friend by giving her significant lead-notice of a procurement opportunity for organizing the strategic planning process. The heads-up to her took place long before the bid opportunity went public. On his own, he decided that he would pay for his early childhood centers out of desegregation dollars, which was later found to be inappropriate by the court.
(Article continued below)
When his fiduciary mismanagement is exposed he fights back- sometimes with vengeance. After the strategic planning shenanigans was exposed, he kept pleading with the press and public to ‘move on- just move on.’ He blamed the media, especially the Arizona Daily Star, for exposing his shady deal. Like a child, he kept saying he had apologized and could not do anything beyond that. His inability to recognize that his day care centers had zero or less to do with desegregation only resulted in his blaming the special master, plaintiffs and court for not going zombie on him like the his three mindless wonders on the board.
When Yousef Awwad left the District last August he provided a response to a requested financial forecast by a board member. It projected a deficit of $15,000,000. Many asked for a state audit but Heliodoro Torres and Karla Soto, one of his loyal staff members who he promoted to Chief Financial Officer, have argued that all is well in money land. Despite the fact that the District’s Efficiency Audit recommended an independent auditor, along with several other experts, Heliodoro has convinced his three zombies not to go along with the recommendation. The TUSD Audit Committee strongly supports the hiring of an independent auditor and has offered TUSD their expert recommendations in several areas. The operative word is: independent.
Heliodoro convinced his zombies and Chief Legal Officer that they needed to find a way to undo the Audit Committee. Heliodoro and his braindead team figured out that they could just kick members off of the Audit Committee who do not reside within TUSD. These are people They have also added the Chief Financial Officer and a board member- placing the committee under the thumbs of both the board and the administration of Karla Soto and Adelita Grijalva. Heliodoro’s enormous hypocrisy in his actions are once again outrageous. So much for anything near independence with Heliodoro’s administrative tampering of a committee that was supposed to be neutral and independent. No such chance with this set up! Read a recent article and post on this below.
In an unexpected move, Heliodoro has revealed that he decided, on his own, to hire an “independent” auditor. The fact that he has taken charge of the process, which actually should be under the board reveals the level of “independence” this person will have from the very beginning- this was supposed to be a position that reported directly to the board but Heliodoro has been allowed to walk away with control over the Audit Committee and the auditor. The board will vote on the appointment once the now expert- stripped/administration infiltrated Audit Committee recommends a candidate for the position. This whole process has been bazaar and now it has been contaminated. The recommendations from the Efficiency Audit, the Audit Committee (pre-infiltration), and the community have been corrupted to suit Heliodoro. The article below addresses the issue. What the hell is Heliodoro hiding? Why has he stalled this process at all cost?
Cam Juarez won’t realize it but Heliodoro has made a bigger fool of him than he already has exposed himself to be on this particular issue. A governing board member tells the public that there is not enough money to hire an independent auditor which has forced him to vote no in moving forward in filling the position. His subordinate then contradicts his position and finds the needed money to move forward. Cam also said that his lack of trust for Mark Stegeman also contributed to his “no” vote for the independent auditor position. Cam is going to have to eat his words or vote “no” again; unless, of course, he flip-flops once again.
Rats and Rodents and Their Droppings
Do not let this topic throw you! We are not talking about central administration. Recently a school was dinged by a Pima County Health Inspector because the Inspector observed rodent feces on the floor of the Van Buskirk Kitchen. After a massive clean up- the school did pass a follow-up inspection. The school had 24 hours to contact a licensed pest control agency and have a written plan of action on how it will “minimize the presence of rodents and other pests.
When we read about this in the article referenced below, we could not help but fantasize about a massive clean-up at 1010 of its nasty rats and smelly rat droppings problem. Whether it is through the next election or a recall- a complete pest control process is greatly needed.
Retaliation is Still Lurking
Speaking of rats, we have heard that Heliodoro and the board majority inquired about having the Tucson Police Department investigate our letters. They want to find out who is in this group of “letter writers” so that they can take action against them. They seem to have forgotten whatever it is they may have learned at one time about the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution. It is frightening! Truly frightening.
As whistleblowers we asked that the issues which we have raised be investigated and we continue to believe this is what must take place. Investigate the wrong-doings we have reported; correct the problems that are affirmed and we go away.
For anyone who still does not understand why we have remained anonymous, it is clear to us that if any of us had disclosed our identities, retaliation would have been swift and firm. There is no place for truth in TUSD as long as Heliodoro consumes all the space with lies and hype. Cam’s shallow judgement of us is that we are a “shadow group”. How dare anyone who is draped with so many questionable actions and such poor judgment throw stones at us! He speaks of himself as an organizer and activist, not recalling that many movements began underground.
Will Heliodoro’s Spouse- Mary Sanchez find a HOLME at Sunnyside?
Soon Steve Holmes and Heliodoro will officially be peers. It is not a stretch to imagine that Heliodoro, who has no scruples, would ask Steve to grant him the favor of hiring his wife as a principal at Sunnyside. After all, Heliodoro was stopped from hiring her as a principal in TUSD. Those who stopped him no longer work for the District. Coincidence? Nope! Retaliation. Watch out Steve; you grant one unethical favor and the slope just gets might slippery. Start clean and leave all the baggage behind.
Some of the baggage Steve will be unloading by going to Sunnyside is that he will be rid of Gloria Copeland’s perpetual interference. She brags that Steve is her “boy”- like a son; that she can get a hold of him at any time she pleases; has him called out of meetings; that she has command over him. OK, so we figured she was just a name dropper until we actually witnessed much of what she describes in her bragging. Go to your new home Holmes and start clean.
The general feedback on our letters has been very positive. We each hear about the letters without people knowing that individuals from our group are sitting right before them. Within TUSD, especially at the schools, we hear nothing but praise. However, we understand that some question what the purpose or our letters is. We said early on that we want the reported problems investigated and resolved. This continues to be our number one objective. However, the importance of the exposure to the reported problems to the general public is very important since external awareness itself puts pressure on Heliodoro and his following board majority.
We have also heard people question why we have remained annonymous. As whistleblowers we believe it is critical for us to remain annonymous for safety reasons and to protect our livelihood and families- as employees, and to protect our children, as parents. Interestingly, the question about our anonymity is usually posed by non-TUSD people, who would be shocked to learn the level of fear that exists within TUSD for anyone to speak up.
We have no confidence in this administration.
We thank you for reading our letters. Please pass the letter on to your peers, friends, and family. As we have said previously, our group has grown, inclusive of site administrators, teachers, parents and volunteers. We thank Three Sonorans for posting every letter! We thank the Arizona Daily Independent for quoting from our letters and posting a few and we also thank the Tucson Weekly for posting one of our letters. We will continue to send our letters to several members of the media. Media and bloggers have our permission to publish our letters. If you did not receive our previous letters, you can see the posting of our last letter, which includes the link to the 6th letter which has links to all of our letters at: