Xavier De La Torre

Emails Show Office of Education Committed to Obfuscation

Internal emails for top Santa Clara County Office of Education administrators provide a rare glimpse into an insulated power structure that attempts to control the message at all times, delays the delivery of information when possible and spins uncomfortable facts into purple public relations prose.

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Xavier De La Torre Leaving Post as County Superintendent of Education

After a rocky year-and-a-half on the job, it appears Santa Clara County Office of Education Superintendent Xavier De La Torre will be heading back to Texas for a job as superintendent of a smaller school district. San Jose Inside reported more than three months ago that De La Torre was on the brink of being fired or resigning after a series of dustups with staff, a dissatisfactory performance review and concerns about a cheating scandal.

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Office of Education in Turmoil as Board Considers Sending Superintendent Packing

Dr. Xavier De La Torre provides guidance and oversees the work of 31 school districts, 17,000 teachers and 280,000 students under the umbrella of the Santa Clara County Office of Education (SCCOE). In his role as county superintendent of education, he also leads an office of about 1,800 employees. But in just a little more than a year and a half on the job, De La Torre is facing the very real prospect of being fired or asked to resign.

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Charter School Wars Heat Up; Can Cooler Heads Prevail?

The Santa Clara County Office of Education hosted a special meeting Saturday for a charter school study workshop. Approximately, 50 community leaders, elected school board members and parents participated in a discussion on the role of charters and traditional public schools in meeting student academic needs. Even though all those who spoke appeared to have the right intentions, eliminating the achievement gap is a divisive issue.

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How Can Educators Solve the Racial Achievement Gap by 2020?

There are several critical “gaps” in the education of our children. One is the gap of how our high school students compare to high school students in cities like Helsinki and Shanghai on PISA (Program for International Student Assessment). Let’s call this gap the “Global Achievement Gap.” It is related to how students perform on comparable international assessments to real world problems in reading, math and science.

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Discover Charter Goes Back before County Board of Education

Tonight a third petition to build a second Discovery Charter School in San Jose goes back before county education officials. Other items on the county Board of Education agenda include a report on the $2 million cuts from the federal sequestration, a study on foster youth in schools and an update on Superintendent Xavier De La Torre paying back his home loan from the county.

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County Superintendent Xavier De La Torre Agrees to Help Pay Home Loan

Xavier De La Torre, superintendent for the Santa Clara County Office of Education, has agreed to give back nearly $100,000 of his salary over the rest of his contract to help pay down the interest and principal of a housing relocation loan he received last year. The manner in which he announced the giveback, however, was a little curious.

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Legal Counsel Gave Bad Advice on Darcie Green Appointment

My professional life has been filled with many ups and many downs. One big down moment came in a Jan. 9 email from District Attorney Jeff Rosen to Superintendent De La Torre, with a “cc” to the SCCOE Board of Education. In this email, Rosen said he had received a complaint that Darcie Green’s recent Board appointment was unlawful.

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Turning the Corner on Condo Debacle

I am very embarrassed. Through an unfortunate set of circumstances, I have contributed to diluting the critical conversation about the quality of public education in Santa Clara County. The debate on how to ensure a high quality public education experience for every child in the county is too important to have it held hostage to a serious error of judgment. The focus of far too many articles in the San Jose Mercury News has been about a condo and contract debacle that I have tried to own for personal naivety. And not asking the right questions of legal counsel when the new superintendent’s contract was negotiated in March 2012.

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