CITY OF KATY (Covering Katy News) – Katy Independent School District Superintendent Lance Hindt will resign his position Jan. 1, 2019 due to what he calls “an organized smear campaign against his family” that has forced him to choose between his dream job and the safety and security of wife and children.
“Folks, my immediate family has to come first,” Hindt said at a special board meeting on Thursday night. “My wife and my children need me. I have an organized and relentless smear campaign against me, and I can not remain as superintendent of Katy ISD while fulfilling those duties and fulfilling my sacred duties as husband and father.”
Before the announcement that Hindt would be retiring, the board voted to have the law firm Feldman and Feldman begin the process of filing legal action against those involved in the smear campaign. The vote was 7 to 0.
“The board intends to find out who is behind this attack,” said board member Bill Lacy. “Teachers, staff, and administrators are all fearful of what may come out about them,” Lacy said. “We are now a community that is afraid.”
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Board member Rebecca Fox spoke of being out of town as her house flooded during Hurricane Harvey. She said her husband was alone to deal with the disaster on his own, and it was Lance Hindt who was there to help.
“You helped him get out of our home,” Fox said. “You called him and said come to Cinco Ranch High School. You checked on him every day. After the flood, you offered us food, a car, and you checked on others, not just my family because I am a board member. What you did to give them a safe place, that’s the man you are,” Fox said.
“Of all the superintendents I’ve worked with professionally (30 to 40) Dr. Hindt is absolutely the top, of the top, of the top,” said board member George Scott. “It makes me sick to my stomach that we are losing this man. You did nothing to deserve where we are today,” Scott added.
“We love you Dr. Hindt,” one man yelled from the back of the room.
No board member mentioned the people responsible for the attacks on Hindt, but most of them were in the audience and applauded when Hindt announced his retirement. They also interrupted school board members at times during their tributes to Hindt. But, by the time board members were done speaking the room was in stunned silence. Board members had their opportunity to speak and their words were powerful.
“In the real world, the politics of personal destruction can pass as fast as a virus,” Scott said.
In Hindt’s short time as superintendent, less than two years, he has served as the chief defender of the district.
Fox wondered who would protect the teachers from the new politics of personal destruction that has become part of our community.
“You (Hindt) deeply care about our purpose,” Fox said. Our teachers are now afraid. They are afraid they will be (attacked) next.”
Board member Bryan Michalsky struggled for words to describe what Hindt’s family had been through over the past three months, and was taken by surprise that Hindt was retiring.
“I can’t imagine, and I am sorry, Michalsky said. “It didn’t have to be that way.”
“I remember two years ago when you arrived and the breath of fresh air that you brought to this district,” Michalsky said.
Board president Ashley Vann talked about the need for the smears to stop.
“This needs to come to an end so we can all do our jobs… our home has been attacked,” Vann said.
The man who met or exceeded every goal set by the school board was stepping down over what started as a 40-year-old bullying accusation and morphed into a relentless campaign of one accusation after another. His very successful career in public education is destroyed, and many now believe that the destruction would not have happened if he didn’t return to Katy.
“I love Katy, but there is a vicious ugliness,” Hindt said.
Watch Dr. Hindt’s statement below.