Judge Catherine Mauzey, of the 250th District Court of Travis County, upheld the Fort Worth school board’s decision to fire Georgia Clark, reported the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The ruling may be subject to further challenge in the Austin-based Third Court of Appeals.
Clark was unanimously dismissed by the school board in June 2019 after she reached out to Trump in a series of posts on Twitter. “Mr. President, Fort Worth Independent School District is loaded with illegal students from Mexico,” she wrote in what she thought were private messages to the president. “Carter-Riverside High School has been taken over by them. Drug dealers are on our campus and nothing was done to them.”
“I really do need a contact here in Fort Worth who should be actively investigating and removing illegals,” another post read.
A follow-up post asked the president to help “remove illegals from Fort Worth,” along with two phone numbers and said “Georgia Clark is my real name.”
Clark appealed her job termination on the First Amendment grounds. In August, an independent hearing examiner reviewed the case and recommended her reinstatement, only to be rejected by the school board. Clark then appealed her case to the Texas Education Agency (TEA).
Mike Morath, commissioner of the TEA, ruled in favor of Clark, demanding her reinstatement with back pay. He stated in his November 2019 ruling that the English teacher’s contract does not waive her constitutional rights to contact, outside of her working hours, elected officials concerning matters over which they have jurisdiction.
The Forth Worth Independent School District, which appealed Morath’s decision almost immediately after its release, welcomed Tuesday’s ruling.
“The District is pleased that Judge Catherine A. Mauzy recognized the importance of the Board’s ability to make employment decisions in the best interests of its students and school community,” the district said in a press release.
The court ruling comes amid a massive influx of illegal immigrant children across the U.S.-Mexico border. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday sent a letter (pdf) to President Joe Biden, urging the federal government to “interview every unaccompanied minor coming across the border to determine if any child has been harmed, groomed, or victimized by human traffickers in any way.”
“Recent decisions by your administration are emboldening dangerous cartels, smugglers, and human traffickers to ramp up their criminal operations,” the Republican governor wrote. “In many cases, these criminals entice unaccompanied minors into inhumane conditions and expose them to abuse and terror.”