- The Round Rock Independent School District (RRISD) school board reinstated the previously suspended superintendent, Hafedh Azaiez, who has been mired in scandal over allegations that he assaulted his pregnant mistress.
- Since being placed on administrative leave in January, Azaiez has received $90,000 of his taxpayer-funded salary, according to Texas Scorecard. The Texas Education Agency’s investigation report on Azaiez was finalized earlier in March, but the RRISD school board chose not to immediately release the report to the public.
- “I’m blown away that in 2022, a group of women in a position of leadership would reward moral character that would engage in infidelity and dating violence,” RRISD father Dustin Clark told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “In any other organization or government institution, a man displaying this type of moral turpitude, with credible allegations of assault against a woman, would have resigned or been fired long ago. But not here.”
A Texas school board has reinstated its previously suspended superintendent who has been mired in scandal over allegations that he assaulted his pregnant mistress.
The TEA advised the school board to suspend Azaiez and conduct an investigation into allegations of assault and the use of school board police to silence critics at both RRISD and his former district, Donna Independent School District (ISD), outlined in a redacted application for a protective order obtained by Fox News from the Travis County District Court.
One claim alleged Azaiez “assaulted a mistress that he had gotten pregnant” in July 2021 after she refused to undergo an abortion, RRISD father Dustin Clark previously told the Daily Caller News Foundation. The alleged victim of the assault emailed the RRISD Board of Trustees requesting to speak to them about “a series of serious events” involving herself and Azaiez, according to an email obtained by the DCNF.
There is also “video of him [Azaiez] actually sending district police with an order to a 68-year-old hispanic grandmother’s house to prevent her from coming onto campus for two years,” at Donna ISD, RRISD father Jeremy Story told the DCNF. “The whole backdrop to this is that this guy had a prior history of being heavy handed and abusing the power given to him.”
Board President Amber Feller said she was “pleased to welcome back Dr. Azaiez” and looked “forward to working together to refocus on our students and staff and to continue building a culture of excellence in Round Rock ISD,” according to the district’s announcement.
RRISD parents called on the school board to further investigate Azaiez to prevent harm in their district at his hands, Clark and Story told the DCNF. As parents and community members in Round Rock became more outspoken in opposition to district policies, the board and Azaiez allegedly attempted to “silence” and “intimidate” parents, preventing them from being involved in their children’s education, the parents said.
Since being placed on administrative leave in January, Azaiez has received $90,000 of his taxpayer-funded salary, according to Texas Scorecard. The TEA’s investigation report into Azaiez was finalized earlier in March, but the RRISD school board chose not to immediately release it to the public.
Azaiez’s attorney, Mary Goodrich Nix, wrote in a Jan. 5 press release that the “alleged assault, which is the genesis of this controversy, did not occur.”
The Travis County District Court conducted its own investigation into Azaiez, the DCNF previously reported.
Superintendent Dr. Azaeiz to Return from Administrative Leave https://t.co/ybp5Xrd46J
— Round Rock ISD (@RoundRockISD) March 25, 2022
“The information that we had was not only that Travis County no longer has an active investigation and it’s closed, but the district attorney also had assured us through another attorney that the case was closed,” former school board president and current trustee Amy Weir said during a Thursday school board meeting on Azaiez’s reinstatement, according to Texas Scorecard.
Two trustees, Mary Bone and Danielle Weston, voted against reinstating Azaiez, Texas Scorecard reported. Bone countered the claim that the investigation is closed, reportedly calling it “inactive.”
“So, that means I guess it could come active anytime,” Bone said during the meeting, according to Texas Scorecard. “It’s not suspended. It means lots of other things, so when we say it’s closed, I think it’s a little bit of a non-truth to the public.”
“I’ll just say that for me to vote for this would require the willing suspension of disbelief,” Weston said during the meeting, Texas Scorecard reported. “I will be voting no.”
Story said the five members of the school board continue to apply “unequal application of their own policies and the law,” in a Friday statement to the DCNF.
“Yesterday, these same board members completely ignored the investigator’s report and instead turned to a letter from some anonymous lawyer regarding the criminal investigation into Azaiez … There are abundant reasons why Azaiez has violated his contract with the district and should be dismissed that have nothing to do with some anonymous assurance from a random lawyer,” Story said.
Clark told the DCNF it “is a sad day for women and children in our school district” and an “even sadder day for victims of … domestic violence.”
“Five of our seven school board trustees have decided to ignore a woman who has alleged abuse by our superintendent,” Clark said. “I can’t wrap my head around this decision. It’s especially heartbreaking for our teachers, and our community of educators.”
Clark said he can’t imagine what the board’s incentive is for voting to reinstate Azaiez.
“I’m blown away that in 2022, a group of women in a position of leadership would reward moral character that would engage in infidelity and dating violence,” he said. “In any other organization or government institution, a man displaying this type of moral turpitude, with credible allegations of assault against a woman, would have resigned or been fired long ago. But not here.”
Clark and Story have been consistent critics of the school district since the summer of 2021, when RRISD first discussed appointing Azaiez, and they were ultimately arrested for alleged disorderly conduct at school board meetings, the DCNF previously reported.
“If you are the Superintendent or a community member that agree with them … you get a pass,” Story said. “If you are a community member that disputes their narratives or exposes their actions you get unlawfully silenced, defamed by their public relations team, stymied by their legal team withholding documents, targeted and thrown in jail.”
Azaiez did not respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s requests for comment. The Round Rock Independent School District directed the DCNF to the district’s announcement when reached for comment.
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