UPDATED August 31 to include additional details and a new notice from Allen ISD.
Allen Independent School District teacher Anthony “Tony” Mattei has been arrested and charged with two counts of indecency with a child by sexual contact. The alleged sex crimes occurred last year, but many parents in the district say this is the first they are hearing about the allegations.
In a follow-up email sent today, district officials say they are retaining an “independent third-party investigator to review the District’s investigation and administrative process associated with allegations of misconduct” against Mattei.
Today’s message also says Allen ISD “will soon be reaching out to the parents of the students who were in this teacher’s classroom to offer support services.” It’s still unclear if any parents were previously notified or when.
Allen parents were shocked to learn from yesterday’s email that the teacher was investigated earlier this year following allegations of misconduct involving a student that were lodged in April, but he was allowed to return to the classroom.
A local parent told Texas Scorecard several eighth-grade girls reported Mattei for assault and harassment during the last school year.
Allen ISD officials were quick to get in front of the news of Mattei’s indictment, saying administrators “wanted to share this information immediately with our community,” though they did not disclose Mattei’s identity:
While we know that the teacher has been indicted, we do not know the specifics that were presented to the grand jury. However, the District can confirm that teacher received an allegation of misconduct in April of 2022. The District immediately notified Allen Police Department School Resource Officers (SROs) and cooperated with law enforcement during the investigation process. The District’s investigation included interviews with the student, the student’s parents, witnesses, and the teacher in question. The teacher was placed on leave for the duration of the investigation process. Allen ISD followed its investigation procedures in place, and based off the available evidence, was unable to sustain the allegation.
Yet school officials apparently failed to find out if the case was still active before allowing Mattei to return to his classes this school year.
Mattei, who was hired by Allen ISD just last year as part of the district’s Career and Technical Education Program, holds a Texas Educator Certificate that became effective May 6, 2022. The district said they have notified the State Board of Educator Certification about the charges.
Before that, Mattei worked for PepsiCo for almost 12 years, then as a supply chain consultant, according to his LinkedIn page.
He also served as a member of the Fairview Town Council from May 2018 to November 2020.
Mattei was arrested and booked into Collin County jail earlier today. Bond was set at $25,000 for each of the second-degree felony charges.
According to county court records, the two offenses occurred on August 11 and September 7, 2021.
Texas Scorecard is still gathering information on which parents, if any, the district notified last year about the allegations against Mattei while he was under internal investigation.
One parent whose student attended Curtis last year (but was not in Mattei’s class) has confirmed that they were not previously notified by the district about the allegations against Mattei and that Tuesday’s email was the first they had heard about it. Parents whose students attend other schools in the district say they were not previously notified.
Today’s email from the district includes addition contacts for concerned parents, students, and community members:
Until the independent review fully begins, Allen ISD encourages current and former students, parents, and staff from Curtis Middle School to email firstname.lastname@example.org with any concerns or information about this situation. … Comments or concerns may also be directed toward the Allen Police Department through Detective Jared McConathy at 972-633-6727. Anonymous tips may also be sent to Allen ISD via text message by texting “AlSD” and your tip to 847411 (TIP411).
Below is the full text of the district’s original email sent Tuesday:
Allen ISD District News
August 30, 2022
A matter of serious concern was brought forward to Allen ISD administrators today, and we wanted to share this information immediately with our community.
On Tuesday, August 30, 2022, the District was notified by a third party that a teacher from Curtis Middle School was indicted by a grand jury. Until this notification occurred, Allen ISD had not been notified that the teacher had been involved in grand jury proceedings. Regardless, we made the decision to immediately remove the teacher from the classroom and place the teacher on administrative leave.
While we know that the teacher has been indicted, we do not know the specifics that were presented to the grand jury. However, the District can confirm that teacher received an allegation of misconduct in April of 2022. The District immediately notified Allen Police Department School Resource Officers (SROs) and cooperated with law enforcement during the investigation process. The District’s investigation included interviews with the student, the student’s parents, witnesses, and the teacher in question. The teacher was placed on leave for the duration of the investigation process. Allen ISD followed its investigation procedures in place, and based off the available evidence, was unable to sustain the allegation. However, in an abundance of caution, Allen ISD followed up on its investigation by notifying Child Protective Services (CPS) of the incident.
Since the District’s investigation, the Collin County Children’s Advocacy Center and additional law enforcement became involved and were able to gain additional information through forensic interviews and heightened discovery methods. The findings from the grand jury process are confidential, and the information regarding the grand jury’s indictment was not made available until today.
The District takes this situation seriously and reiterates that the teacher was placed on immediate leave today. Our District will continue to cooperate with law enforcement. The District has also notified the State Board of Educator Certification about this report.
Additional information will be provided to parents of children at Curtis Middle School, both current and former, as appropriate and necessary on an individual basis, but we felt that it was vital to share this information with every parent in our school district. Safety is one of the District’s top priorities and we will continue to make every effort to provide a safe educational environment for our students.