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Uvalde CISD announces interim superintendent as Hal Harrell prepares to retire

Gary Patterson is expected to take over soon, following Hal Harrell's official retirement.

UVALDE, Texas — Uvalde CISD officials unanimously approved Gary Patterson as interim superintendent for the district, effectively triggering outgoing leader Hal Harrell's retirement a week after suggesting he would stay on through the rest of the year. 

Patterson served as East Central ISD superintendent in San Antonio until 2014, and has continued to take on temporary jobs as interim superintendent at a number of regional districts ever since.

District leaders announced their decision at a special meeting Wednesday night as they move their focus to finding Harrell's full-time replacement. Patterson officially takes over when Harrell officially announces his retirement, which is expected to happen soon. 

Harrell had been with Uvalde CISD since 1992 in a variety of roles, and served as superintendent for the last four years. He is one of many district and law enforcement leaders under intense scrutiny in the aftermath of the Robb Elementary shooting in which a gunman killed 19 students and two teachers in May. 

Harrell's announcement about his plans came just three days after the school district suspended its entire police force pending a full investigation on the Robb massacre, fulfilling one of the most vocal demands from community members and victims' families. 

This is a developing story. Check back with KENS5.com for updates. 


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