Ex-Dallas ISD Employees Say HR Department Operated Through Fear, Retaliation

Shortly after Chrystal Thierry refused to approve some extremely high pay raises for several top administrators within the Dallas Independent School District, she says she became the victim of retaliation. As the compensation director for the school district, it was her job to oversee such pay raises. When she declined to approve them, her boss signed off on them instead, and then gave Thierry a poor evaluation and a formal reprimand for lateness.

The retaliation got even worse from there. When she filed a grievance against her boss, the next day the district announced a “reorganization,” which included the elimination of her job.

The incident involving Thierry was part of a trend of issues that prompted a Dallas ISD investigator to call for a full investigation into problems within the district’s personnel department. The department head, Carmen Darville, and another high-ranking administrator recently resigned after the Dallas Morning News obtained instant messages exchanged between the two. The messages included disparaging comments about their co-workers, going so far as to make fun of their age, religion and race. They also reportedly discussed ways to get certain people to leave the school district.

The allegations of retaliation against workers like Thierry are not yet investigation, and a Dallas ISD spokesperson says there will not be a review conducted. Thierry had filed a grievance against her superior Tonya Grayson, but Grayson herself led the hearing of the grievance.

With seven total former employees of the district speaking out, it appears that there is a problem with the way employees within the district are treated by administrators.

Our own Steve Kardell is representing one of the employees with grievances against the district. He was quoted as saying, “It was clear that [the client’s] responsibilities were restricted, and he was frozen out of a lot of meetings, emails and communications that would be necessary for somebody like him to do a job. It was a complete freezing out for purposes to get rid of him.”

This case will continue to evolve as time goes on. If you face similar issues in your place of employment, reach out to the skilled Dallas attorneys at Whistleblower Law for Managers.