Controversial former Dallas Independent School District (DISD) superintendent Michael Hinojosa told reporters Tuesday that he will not be running for mayor next year.
The assertion confounded many local politicos who had claimed Hinojosa resigned from the top post at DISD to prepare for a foray into electoral politics, according to WFAA.
He told the local news outlet that he is currently busy with a consulting gig and that a bid for mayor in 2023 would be “bad timing.”
Still, it is unclear how viable a candidate the former superintendent would have been against incumbent Mayor Eric Johnson, considering his 13 years at DISD’s top post reportedly left a lot to be desired by district teachers, students, and parents.
The man allegedly jumped ship for more lucrative opportunities in educational consulting, abandoning “over 150,000 students at Dallas ISD—mostly students of color many of whom will never graduate high school let alone go to college or pursue fruitful careers,” opined education activist Ndure Cain in an op-ed published in The Dallas Express back in January.
“He refused to put in a system of teacher accountability to reward the best teachers and … [he] strongly resisted any attempt by parents to convert failing Dallas ISD schools into charter schools,” Cain wrote.
The former superintendent has reportedly been taking well-paid consulting contracts for clients in the education industry since stepping down.
Despite the efforts of district teachers, the Texas Education Agency’s latest accountability report for Hinojosa’s last academic year as superintendent showed that nearly 20% of DISD’s class of 2022 did not graduate on time.
Furthermore, only 41% of its students scored at grade level on their State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) exams.
The former superintendent further strained relations with teachers, students, and parents by forcing them to wear masks for several months at the tail end of the COVID-19 pandemic, defying state leaders and the Texas Supreme Court.
Hinojosa was succeeded by DISD administrative alum and former superintendent of Austin Independent School District Stephanie Elizalde, a controversial figure in her own right who put herself at odds with educators and parents.