Tech high school superintendent, under investigation for spending, resigns

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HARTFORD — After weeks of controversy, Nivea Torres resigned from her position as Superintendent of the Connecticut Technical High School System on Monday.

Commissioner Dianna Wentzell and Chairman Robert Trefry announced the resignation, which is effective May 1, 2017.

Torres reportedly spent $84,000 in taxpayer money for memberships for 1,300 local educators in a national group while she ran for election for a vice president’s seat with the organization.

The Hartford Courant reported Torres bought the memberships for the nonprofit Association for Career and Technical Education in September. The newspaper reported nearly 240 of the 1,300 educators for whom she bought memberships were eligible to vote in the election, which she lost.

Torres has been placed on paid leave while state education officials investigate more than $4.5 million in spending by the Technical High School System.

Wentzell and Trefry said in a statement, “During Dr. Torres’ tenure, programs in manufacturing, digital media, health technology and media expanded and graduation rates improved.