Interim superintendent takes over Austin ISD

Austin ISD Interim Superintendent Paul Cruz. (Julie Karam/KXAN)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The man taking over control of Austin schools kicked off his new job Thursday with a classroom visit.

In front of a crowd of students at Webb Middle School Interim Superintendent Paul Cruz explained how much is on the line.

“Do you know how much money we spend?” he asked the students. “A billion dollars. A billion dollars a year for you. My job is to make sure everything we do is about you.”

Cruz is familiar with Webb. During his previous work as Austin ISD’s Chief Schools Officer, Cruz mentored a couple students at Webb.

During the visit, he stopped by a band class wishing them luck ahead of a University Interscholastic League performance.

“It’s also fun and good for me,” Cruz added. “I was a teacher. I am a teacher, and it is important for me to keep that connection with students.”

Austin ISD trustees expect to have a permanent superintendent this time next year. Cruz will not be applying for that job. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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