A discussion of so-called “antiracism” is causing a stir in one of Texas’ most hotly contested school board races.
In 2020, incumbent Round Rock ISD school board vice president Tiffany Harrison moderated a taxpayer-financed book discussion. “How to Be an Antiracist” by Henry Rogers (who writes under the nom de plume Ibram Kendi) was the work under consideration.
The discussion focused on “collective guilt” where “no one is exempt” from the work of “antiracism.” From the speaker’s perspective, this is the natural conclusion when “everything in our world is racialized.”
The ultimate, destructive end to this ideology comes when you “push at all the nodes [of society] and pull them apart.”
While not all of the most objectionable content was personally spoken by Harrison (the moderator), she declined to push back on any of it. Harrison, and the other panelists, can be seen nodding in assent throughout the discussion.
Tiffany Harrison’s latest controversy is merely the most recent chapter in Round Rock ISD’s multi-year saga.
For more than a year, Texas Scorecard has chronicled multiple scandals involving Round Rock ISD in a special report and a podcast series, Exposed, which included investigations into the school board’s rushed hiring of Superintendent Hafedh Azaiez. Five trustees—Amy Weir, Jun Xiao, Amber Feller, Cory Vessa, and Tiffanie Harrison—voted to hire Azaiez despite the objections of Weston, Bone, and local parents.
After Azaiez’s hiring, citizens criticized the five board members, dubbed the “Bad Faith Five,” for allegedly covering up domestic violence allegations against Azaiez and protecting him through ongoing criminal investigations.
Additionally, Weston and Bone walked out of an August 2021 school board meeting after accusing the district of violating the Texas Open Meetings Act by intentionally limiting seating under the guise of following COVID-19 safety guidelines. The Bad Faith Five then attempted to censure Weston and Bone, but a judge issued a temporary restraining order and halted the vote.
Weston and Bone also faced pressure from an activist connected to the board majority. The activist filed a lawsuit requesting Weston’s removal from the board, which a state court dismissed and denied for further appeals last month. In an interview with Austin’s KLBJ, Weston disputed the activist’s accusations that she accepted bribes as political contributions.
Tiffany Harrison faces former Austin City Councilmember Don Zimmerman in the race for Round Rock ISD Place 6, which occurs down ballot in this fall’s general election. Election Day is November 8.