Recently uncovered internal documents reveal Tarrant County College may still have an ethnicity-based Faculty Recruitment and Retention Plan despite a new state law prohibiting the practice.

Senate Bill 17, signed into law last year, bans Texas’ public universities from establishing a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion office, using DEI criteria in their hiring practices, or requiring employees or prospective employees to attend DEI training.

However, former TCC employee Jack Reynolds provided The Dallas Express with a copy of the Faculty Recruitment and Retention Plan, which states that its current goal is to hire more Hispanic employees. 

“The current goal is to create a faculty recruitment plan allowing the College to increase the number of Hispanic faculty to better align with the student population. TCC is committed to the ongoing systemic changes needed to ensure the increased recruitment, inclusion, retention, and completion of historically underserved and underrepresented populations,” reads the plan.

Additionally, the plan states that TCC aims to foster a “culture and climate for equitable outcomes.”

“Successful adoption of intentional recruitment and retention practices that result in a faculty that looks like our students will be measured by year-over-year percentages that are closely aligned across the College,” it reads. 

Reynolds told The Dallas Express that during his time working at TCC, his department chair was instructed to focus on hiring more Hispanic employees and was instructed that hiring decisions were based on increasing diversity at the college. 

“The left has no problem with racism as long as they can pick the race and who gets to be a racist,” said Reynolds.

According to the TCC’s website, the board of trustees was briefed on the plan at a work session meeting in September 2021. However, Reginald Gates, the vice chancellor for communications and external affairs at TCC told Texas Scorecard that the plan was never implemented.  

“Tarrant County College does not have a Faculty Recruitment and Retention Plan. The document you referenced below was requested by former Chancellor Giovannini and presented to the Board of Trustees as an informational item at the Board Working Session on September 16, 2021. The plan referenced was not modified, and it was never implemented,” said Gates. “Tarrant County College does not have a racial quota as part of its hiring practices.”

Despite Gate’s assertion, Trustee Laura Pritchett told The Dallas Express the board needs to revisit the plan and claims it was approved by previous trustees. 

“TCC’s current Faculty Recruitment and Retention Plan, approved by the prior Board, appears to be obsolete and not in concert with the intent of SB 17. The College’s current plan for hiring and retaining faculty should be revisited to ensure 100% compliance with the law,” Pritchett said. “The College needs to remain focused on student outcomes and student success. The measures used for hiring should not be driven by race metrics but by merit.”

Emily Medeiros

Emily graduated from the University of Oklahoma majoring in Journalism. She is excited to use her research and writing skills to report on important issues around Texas.