The superintendent of a North Texas school district has announced he will be resigning at the end of the year, amid dissatisfaction from parents and concern over curricula that is less focused on academics and more focused on social justice.
Highland Park Independent School District in Dallas County contains about 7,000 students and is considered high-performing. In the 2021-2022 accountability ratings released by the Texas Education Agency, the district received a 98 out of 100.
Dr. Tom Trigg held the superintendent position since 2015. This week, he announced to the school board he would resign at the end of the school year.
“I certainly have appreciated the opportunities the last seven-and-a-half years have provided, and I really do look forward to the remainder of this year and continuing working with my colleagues and you as community members,” said Trigg.
But the news is welcome to many parents who have said the district is increasingly focused on critical race theory, radical gender theory, and other leftist ideology.
A recent article by Epoch Times highlights four different district parents who decided to pull their kids out of the district, pointing toward curricula based on “sex, gender, and race, instead of classical education.”
Earlier this year during the district’s school board elections, candidate Spencer Siino made firing Trigg his top priority, saying he “put the district on a path of a technology-driven, political values-focused approach, centered around ‘Professional Development’ rather than a traditional liberal arts primary education.”
Instead Siino campaigned on replacing Trigg with a “classical educator” who can return the district to a traditional curriculum focused on reading, writing, math, science, “real history,” and classic works, as well as “[prioritizing] resources on teachers rather than administrators and technology.”
“The Founders of our country, all of whom were classically educated, proposed a public education system not because they wanted to produce a modern workforce, but because they knew that in order to preserve the American experiment of a Republic that is of the people, by the people and for the people, the citizenry would have to be educated,” said Siino.
Though he fell short in the race, the foundation of his campaign’s message continues with Trigg’s announced departure.
“I campaigned on replacing HPISD’s superintendent with a traditional educator as opposed to the progressive educators with PhDs in ‘Educational Leadership’ that populate 99 percent of the superintendent seats in the United States,” Siino told Texas Scorecard following the news of Trigg’s departure. “I hold no personal animus toward Tom Trigg, nor do I think he was particularly bad relative to the other superintendents across the country. My campaign was solely concerned with the institutions (universities, TASA, UNESCO, etc.) from which superintendents like Tom Trigg hail.”
As the HPISD board begins the process of finding a replacement for Trigg, Siino says he’s concerned the school board could make the same mistake again.
“I’m very concerned that the HPISD trustees will continue to bow to pressure from TASA and superintendent search firms, who exclusively guide school districts to hire candidates with the same background as Tom Trigg, ensuring increasingly woke curriculum delivered through EdTech and the spending of taxpayer dollars on just about everything but teachers and textbooks,” said Siino.