Georgia Clark, a veteran high school English teacher in Fort Worth, had an urgent request for President Trump: She needed help pulling undocumented immigrants from her school.
“Mr. President, Fort Worth Independent School District is loaded with illegal students from Mexico,” Clark wrote May 17 on her now-deleted Twitter account, @Rebecca1939, in tweets that led to her termination.
“Anything you can do to remove the illegals from Fort Worth would be greatly appreciated,” she wrote in another tweet.
Clark was careful in her approach, she believed, and told the president she needed guarantees her identity would be protected when action was taken. “Texas will not protect whistle blowers. The Mexicans refuse to honor our flag,” she wrote.
Clark says she didn’t mean for everyone to see her thoughts and requests on immigration. She says she believed the tweets were private between her and the president.
“Ms. Clark stated she did not realize the tweets were public,” the Fort Worth Independent School District said in a review, a copy of which was obtained by The Washington Post. Clark acknowledged that the tweets were hers, the review said.
The very public messages have now embroiled her school district in scandal — and less than three weeks after she authored them, they got her fired.
But Clark “intends to request a hearing for the purpose of contesting the proposed action against her contract,” her attorney Brandon Brim said Wednesday.
At a Tuesday meeting, eight school board members voted unanimously to terminate Clark’s contract after more than a dozen people spoke out against her during public comments.
No one spoke in her defense.
"Her comments were hurtful, irresponsible, misleading and distrustful to the students she is supposed to protect and educate,” one woman told the board. Speaking after the decision, District Superintendent Kent P. Scribner said Clark’s conduct “warranted our recommendation for termination.”
The inquiry substantiated “inappropriate behavior” in violation of district regulations. Clark was placed on administrative leave with pay on May 29, two days before the last day of school, district spokesman Clint Bond said.
Clark’s tweets angered parents and others, prompting a response from Scribner.
“Let me reiterate our commitment that every child in the District is welcome and is to be treated with dignity and respect,” Scribner wrote May 29 on Facebook.
The response was so strong that the district, in a later post, urged parents and guardians to refrain from harsh language.
“I’m very surprised and concerned that this cruel woman has been berating our precious children for years,” a woman wrote in response to Scribner. “Where was FWISD???” she asked, referring to the Fort Worth Independent School District.
The Supreme Court ruled in Plyler v. Doe that public schools are required to provide schooling for children regardless of their immigration status. Schools cannot ask students about their immigration status or report them or family members to federal immigration authorities.
Clark, an English teacher at Carter-Riverside High School, has worked with the district since 1998, the review said, and has a history of violations — including insulting her students’ ethnicity. Even before the tweets came to light, the district was already investigating separate allegations of derogatory remarks by Clark in the classroom.
Last month, when one student asked to go to the bathroom, Clark told the student to “show me your papers that are saying you are legal,” a student told investigators in an account corroborated by another student.
She denied to investigators that she made the comment, which the report claims occurred May 17 — the same day Clark tweeted at Trump multiple times about what she perceived as illegal immigration in Fort Worth and in the school district.
Fort Worth’s population is about a third Hispanic, according to city data.
In 2007, Clark kicked a student, the review said, though an investigation determined it was “without malice.” In 2013, she was disciplined for referring to a group of students as “little Mexico” and called another student “white bread.” Those allegations proved to be true, according to the review.
Julio Argueta, a graduate of a Fort Worth high school and student at nearby Texas Christian University, told the board he was an immigrant student and said Clark’s behavior could have severe and lasting impacts.
“Why did we wait until now?” Argueta asked the board, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported. “We need to fire this teacher, and we need to prevent her from ever teaching again.”
Clark had some defenders online. Fort Worth Republican Women, a Facebook group, asked members to contact district officials to counter what they view as overreach.
“The students were offended by a teacher asking the President, Donald J. Trump, to enforce the law so she’s disciplined?” the group wrote. “Would the same be true if another teacher supported illegal immigration? FWISD has its priorities confused.”
Clark’s former Twitter account was filled with messages directed to Trump in January and May and containing invective about undocumented immigrants, according to the report.
“Do you have someone who has looked at the crime statistics across our great nation and documented the number of time an illegal immigrant has committed an act of robbery or murder on American citizens?” she wrote to Trump.
The president has inaccurately linked violence to unlawful immigrants, who commit crimes at lower rates than U.S.-born Americans.
But Clark assured Trump that her concerns were legitimate, the tweets show, and on May 17, she left her cellphone number for the White House to call.
“Georgia Clark is my real name,” she wrote.
Reis Thebault contributed to this report.