EVIT superintendent involved in scandal

Zachery Valentine, staff writer

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The superintendent of East Valley Technical Institute (EVIT), Chad Wilson, who was indicted in September by a grand jury for allegedly mishandling public money while serving as Apache Junction’s superintendent, has been reinstated by the Governing Board.
Many Cactus Shadows students are currently enrolled in EVIT, and travel to their campus in East Mesa every day to attend classes
“When I found out about this situation, it got me thinking about whether or not I should still take this program next year,” said Mikala Kraven, a sophomore.
Wilson was indicted on four felony counts of theft and misuse of public money, allegedly making unauthorized payments to his administrators. These charges are for events that occurred when he was a part of the Apache Junction School District. Wilson was accused of the misuse of $133,000 in public funds to different school administrators without approval. All of his charges are considered felonies.
The Arizona Republic reported that the money included, “$126,000 in performance payments that went to 11 to 15 administrators; $3,880 for professional development instruction, and $2,550 went to three administrators to attend athletic events on Friday nights.”
The Fountain Hills Times reported that on February 11, the EVIT governing board heard a report from the law firm that they had hired to investigate allegations in regards to the school. Wilson told The Republic that it was common practice for the district to pay subs $90 a day. According to the attorney general’s office, Wilson made these payments while the district was experiencing financial difficulties and cutting school programs.
“I still want to take this program my junior year of high school because it hasn’t affected the program in any way,” said Kacey Flanery, a sophomore.
Wilson wasn’t the only superintendent to be accused of misuse of money. According to azcentral, Sally Downey, the EVIT superintendent who hired Wilson,, had been on administrative leave since January. Downey resigned at the end of April as a part of the separation agreement.
The EVIT governing board held a special meeting on September 12 discussing the situation and what to do with Wilson’s employment. According to 12 News, there were more votes to keep Wilson as the superintendent of EVIT than there were for not keeping him. Therefore, they decided to keep Wilson in his position with some safeguards. Chad Wilson was offered his job back.
“ know that there has been a lot in the newspapers lately about what is going on with the leadership of EVIT, but it has had no impact on the quality of their programs that they are delivering to their students,” Louise Rochford, Career and Technical Director.
EVIT stands for East Valley Institute of Technology. It is a public education program of career training options. At Cactus Shadows, students enrolled in EVIT spend half a day at their high school and the other half at an EVIT campus.