TUSD’s Romero denied top spot in Albuquerque

Augustine Romero, principal of Pueblo Magnet High School, in the Tucson Unified School District was not one of the six superintendent semifinalists named by the Albuquerque Public Schools Board on April 2.

According to the Albuquerque Journal, Romero applied for the spot in the second wave of applications. The Journal reports that the “initial deadline for job was March 2. Earlier this month the board, however, decided to extended its superintendent search timeline and reopened the position for more applicants.”

Fifteen applicants applied in the second wave.

Included in the first wave were TUSD’s Maria Figueroa, the new Director of Student Equity For Mexican American Student Services, and Scott Hagerman, Director of Exceptional Education.

Hagerman was named new superintendent of the Continental Elementary School District on March 27.

Under the failing leadership of H.T. Sanchez, administrators are fleeing the district. long time administrators began to leave early, and now Sanchez is unable to hold on to his own recruits.

Romero, a political operative for the Grijalva family, is unpopular with both sides of the political aisle. His hot temper and unimpressive academic work have been the sources of much resentment in the district’s central offices, however, the Grijalvas have seen to it that he is protected.

The protection came in handy this last year, when Romero’s quick temper was caught on videotape during the National Association of Multicultural Educators conference this year. Romero had to be escorted out of a meeting after losing his temper during the conference at the swank El Conquistador Hotel in Oro Valley, Arizona. In that emotional meltdown Romero admitted that the classes he created to be offered to students this year were identical to the classes that were found to violate Arizona law two years ago.

A group of teachers and education operatives released their fifth scathing indictment of TUSD last week. In the email message, they write, “This makes the third TOP level administrator to leave TUSD since August: Yousef Awaad, Daman Jackson and Steve Holmes. It has got to be extremely challenging, and even compromising for someone with values, to work closely with someone who believes he is right all of time, does not tolerate any level of disagreement, is greatly deficient in scruples, acts out his anger in retaliatory ways, and treats all decisions like car deals (wheeling and dealing).”

Related articles:

Romero’s MAS meltdown prompts ADE visit to TUSD


  1. Mike R.-Thanks for the information about Vail School District putting the brakes on letting in former TUSD students. I totally agree that if parents don’t live in a district & pay taxes to support the schools, they have no business putting their children in those schools unless they want to pay tuition fees equivalent to taxes. Yes, VSD residents have been very generous about allowing kids who live in TUSD boundaries to got to Vail schools. The parents of TUSD children need to organize and put a stop to the malfeasance, nepotism, and outright fraudulent practices and harassment of TUSD administrators.

  2. For the 2015-2016 school year, Vail High Schools are closed to open enrollment. Even if your child was open enrolled into a middle school, you won’t get a seat at a Vail High School. The class sizes are already far too large and the district administration heard it from the residents of VSD who have approved multiple bonds to make up the shortage of state funding. There aren’t enough seats for district residents let alone everyone who wants to get out of TUSD. The parents of open enrolled students don’t pay into district bonds, but they benefit from them. I think the generosity of VSD residents has been worn out as they see their kids stuffed into oversized classrooms. If you want your kids to go to Vail Schools, you’re going to have to move into the district and pay the extra taxes like the rest of the residents there do. There just isn’t enough room any longer and new neighborhoods are still going up in the district.

  3. I’ll second they make me sick.

    Maybe he can go peddle the millions in lost TUSD items that always disappear

  4. Pretty soon Vail school district will no longer be an option for out-of-district students. The Vail schools are overcrowded and will be closed to anyone but district residents.

  5. If you do have morals and values of honesty and integrity, you will be targeted by the “in crowd” of administrators within TUSD. If you think the fact that Steve Holmes, Yousef Awaad, Damon Jackson, & Scott Hagerman are leaving is very telling, take a look at the Job Board for all of the teacher positions which haven’t been filled but by daily substitutes over the past year. The voters of Pima County have the power to make a difference through recall, but it’s much easier to simply yank their kids out of TUSD and send them to Vail. Rincon emptied out of almost all of the teachers who were hired for the turn-around 4 years ago. The kids didn’t recognize half of the teachers this year because so many of them were new. The group of teachers and administrators who have sent the several scathing letters would do better to openly organize recall petitions instead of leaving the students and the teachers to be victimized by the unscrupulous administrators from the top down.

  6. Why would any school district want someone from TUSD? Romero has proven time and again that he cannot control himself and that makes him a detriment to education, but hey, the Grijalva gang protects him. Makes me sick.

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