INGLEWOOD – County Administrator Dr. Erika Torres will be resigning from Inglewood Unified School District effective Oct. 31.
Citing her health as a factor she discloses she was diagnosed with breast cancer ten years ago and had a recurrence that she must focus on.
My health is preventing me from being able to continue the work with the same pace and intensity that a district in receivership deserves.Dr. Erika Torres
Torres was out on medical leave earlier this year and returned after 30 days.
Dr. Torres has been at the helm of the district for the last three years, after taking over when Vincent Matthews went back to the Bay area.
Since taking over in 2018, Torres has consolidated schools and led the closure of Warren Lane Elementary School due to declining enrollment. Torres didn’t disclose to the public the district received $10 million for doing so under AB 1804. 2UrbanGirls did.
The district is said to be on pace to close another five schools, although they have not publicly identified which schools are on the chopping block.
Torres also led the passage of a controversial school bond, that appeared coordinated with City Hall. She unilaterally approved the bond for the 2020 ballot knowing she was planning to close schools.
Inglewood property owners have approved nearly $500 million in school bonds, since 1999, to “save the district” which is no closer to come out of receivership than it was in 2012 when they accepted a $29 million dollar emergency loan to maintain fiscal stability.
Torres and Asm. Tina McKinnor held a town hall meeting last month that was met with frustration from residents who want local control to return to voters.
Torres and Inglewood Mayor James Butts asked the state to restructure the remaining balance on the loan, however, that request was rejected.
It’s important to note that the state receivership of IUSD is not exclusively about the emergency loan.Asm. Tina McKinnor
The belief is the district is being methodically dismantled and a voting body would thwart those efforts as property tax assessments are still taking place twice a year as scheduled.
Not a single appointed administrator (Kent Taylor, Dr. Don Brann, LaTanya Kirk-Carter, Thelma de Melendez, Vincent Matthews, Dr. Erika Torres) have been either been able to or had the desire to address the most significant challenges facing the district which is declining enrollment. The constant in/out of administrators is one way to keep the district in a constant state of disarray and impress upon parents that this is no place to educate your child when the leaders keep jumping ship.
Los Angeles County Office of Education Superintendent Dr. Debra Duardo is now tasked with finding another County Administrator to finish off the downsizing of Inglewood Unified School District at the taxpayers expense.Dr.-Torres-Letter-to-IUSD