Uvalde school chief plans to resign after community outrage

Oct 10, 2022, 12:58 PM | Updated: Oct 11, 2022, 7:23 am
FILE - A Uvalde police officer watches as family and friends of those killed and injured in the sch...

FILE - A Uvalde police officer watches as family and friends of those killed and injured in the school shootings at Robb Elementary take part in a protest march and rally, Sunday, July 10, 2022, in Uvalde, Texas. Four months after the Robb Elementary School shooting, the Uvalde school district on Friday, Oct. 7 pulled its entire embattled campus police force off the job following a wave of new outrage over the hiring of a former Texas state trooper who was part of the hesitant law enforcement response as a gunman killed 19 children and two teachers.(AP Photo/Eric Gay)

(AP Photo/Eric Gay)

UVALDE, Texas (AP) — Uvalde’s school district superintendent announced Monday he plans to resign by the end of the academic year, following months of community outrage over the handling of the United States’ deadliest school shooting in nearly a decade.

“My heart was broken on May 24th,” Hal Harrell said in a statement.

The Uvalde school board voted unanimously Monday evening to begin the search for Harrell’s successor.

Harrell, law enforcement, the school board, and other school officials have faced heavy criticism over their actions — and inaction — during the massacre of 19 fourth-graders and two teachers at Robb Elementary School. Officers allowed the shooter to remain inside a classroom for more than 70 minutes.

Texas lawmakers issued a damning report this summer that found “systemic failures and egregiously poor decision making” by both police and school officials.

Harrell’s resignation statement was posted on his wife’s Facebook page because he said he doesn’t have an account.

“I have been blessed to work among amazing educators and staff who believe in education for more than 30 years, which have all been in our beautiful community. These next steps for our future are being taken after much reflection, and is completely my choice,” he wrote.

The Facebook post, first reported by CNN, was initially made public on Monday but was no longer accessible a few hours later. The Uvalde school board did not respond to requests for a copy of Harrell’s statement.

The superintendent’s announcement comes a week after school district officials suspended the entire school police force.

Just a day earlier, the district fired a recently hired school police officer who had been a Texas state trooper on the scene at Robb Elementary when the shooting took place. The district hired the ex-trooper, Crimson Elizondo, even though school officials knew she was one of seven troopers on the scene, all of whom are under internal investigation for their actions that day. She had quit the Texas Department of Public Safety.

That these developments all come just a month into the new school year underscores the sustained pressure that families of some of the slain children and teachers have kept on the district.

In July, the Uvalde school board called a special meeting to hear from parents. At that meeting, Harrell apologized for previously being “too formal” and not letting victims’ families say their piece.

___

For more AP coverage of the Uvalde school shooting: https://apnews.com/hub/uvalde-school-shooting

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - In this Monday, Nov. 2, 2015 file photo, the first twin-engine 158-seater C919 passenger pla...
Associated Press

Chinese airline receives first domestic long-range jetliner

BEIJING (AP) — A Chinese airline on Friday became the first customer to take delivery of a long-range jetliner produced by a state-owned manufacturer set up to try to compete with Boeing and Airbus, state TV reported. The Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China’s C919 is part of the ruling Communist Party effort’s to transform the […]
3 hours ago
Associated Press

Spain hosts EU-Med summit to discuss energy crisis

MADRID (AP) — The leaders of nine Mediterranean and Southern European countries planned to meet Friday in Spain, with the energy crisis triggered by the Russian invasion of Ukraine likely to top the agenda. The EU-Med9 meeting in the eastern port city of Alicante brings together the leaders of Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Greece, Malta, […]
3 hours ago
Medical workers in protective overalls walk past a line outside the fever clinic of a hospital in B...
Associated Press

China struggles with COVID infections after controls ease

BEIJING (AP) — A rash of COVID-19 cases in schools and businesses were reported by social media users Friday in areas across China after the ruling Communist Party loosened anti-virus rules as it tries to reverse a deepening economic slump. Official data showed a fall in new cases, but those no longer cover big parts […]
3 hours ago
FILE - Ukraine Finance Minister Serhiy Marchenko walks outside of the International Monetary Fund (...
Associated Press

Helping Ukraine is ‘self-preservation,’ finance chief says

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Ukraine’s finance minister says crucial Western financial support is “not charity” but “self-preservation” in the fight to defend democracy as his country deals with growing costs to repair electrical and heating infrastructure wrecked by Russian attacks. Serhiy Marchenko also told The Associated Press in an interview Thursday from Kyiv that he […]
3 hours ago
People walk by monitors showing an exchange rate of the Japanese yen against the U.S. dollar at a s...
Associated Press

Asian shares advance on back of Wall Street gains

BANGKOK (AP) — Shares rose in Asia on Friday after an advance on Wall Street led by the latest rally in technology companies. Chinese benchmarks rose on reports the government is planning new measures to support the ailing property sector, which has dragged on growth over the past several years. The relaxation of some of […]
3 hours ago
A general view of pupils during lunch hour at Hillstone Primary School, in Birmingham, England, Wed...
Associated Press

UK cost-of-living woes stir push for more free school meals

BIRMINGHAM, England (AP) — As the school bell rings, dozens of children begin filing into the canteen at Hillstone Primary School. The day’s offering, a roast dinner, is a popular one, and many are eager to tuck into their plates of turkey slices, roasted potatoes, broccoli and gravy. For some children in this area of […]
3 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

(Desert Institute for Spine Care photo)...
DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Why DISC is world renowned for back and neck pain treatments

Fifty percent of Americans and 90% of people at least 50 years old have some level of degenerative disc disease.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
Uvalde school chief plans to resign after community outrage