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Former Austin High administrators still have time to appeal
By: Ruben Veloz
EL PASO, Texas--In a unanimous decision, the El Paso ISD board of managers voted to terminate former Austin High School Principal Dr. John Tanner and former Assistant Principal Diane Thomas.
They were not present during Tuesday night's board meeting, but students were emotional after learning they may never return to their high school.
"It's been very awkward. I feel like the school year has never started," said Ashley Nava.
Nava is a junior at Austin High School and told KFOX14 she has been supporting Tanner since he was put on administrative leave earlier this year.
"I know that it's just politics with the school board, and I don't know what they have against him," said Nava.
As KFOX14 reported, Tanner faced termination in April after the release of the Weaver audit.
The audit claimed Tanner was one of eight former administrators who allegedly took part in the cheating scandal left behind by former EPISD superintendent Lorenzo Garcia.
The board reinstated Tanner, but he was put on administrative leave again during the summer.
"We feel the board betrayed us," said Austin High School parent Michael Reynolds.
Reynolds doesn't understand why the board didn't give an explanation.
"The students started the school year. Dr. Tanner was gone. Everybody was heartbroken and no one knows why," said Reynolds.
Board president Dee Margo told KFOX14 he couldn't comment on the matter because it's being considered a personnel issue.
Nava said no matter what the reason may be, Dr. Tanner will always be her role model.
"He will always be in my heart and he will always be a father figure that I will always look up to," said Nava.
The former administrators will have 15 days to appeal the board's decision, which is another reason the Margo told KFOX14 the board couldn't comment on why the board voted to fire Tanner, and his assistant principal.