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After eligibility challenges against two Mansfield ISD candidates, both will appear on ballot

A hand deposits a voting ballot in a box
Both candidates running for Place 2 in Mansfield ISD will be on the May 4 ballot after residents challenged their eligibility.

Both candidates running for Place 2 on the Mansfield ISD school board will appear on the May 4 ballot, even after challenges from residents who claim the two are ineligible.

UT Arlington professor Jandel Crutchfield and Tarrant County College professor Angel Hidalgo are running to replace incumbent Desiree Thomas, who initially filed to seek another term but later withdrew from the race.

Last Mansfield ISD confirmed the board was reviewing "several complaints" about Hidalgo's eligibility after records showed he was not a registered voter in Tarrant County when he filed to run.

Parent Ebony Turner told school board members at a March meeting that Dr. Hidalgo “should’ve never been placed on the ballot as a candidate. Since he was allowed to be a candidate, he should now be declared ineligible.”

Not long after, other Mansfield residents questioned Crutchfield’s eligibility. Records show she claimed homestead exemptions in two other states — not Texas.

This week Mansfield ISD told KERA that after a review of Crutchfield’s eligibility, “she bas been determined to be in compliance with eligibility requirements.”

In a statement, Mansfield ISD board president Courtney Lackey Wilson said after consulting with legal counsel and election officials, findings for Hidalgo’s eligibility remain “inconclusive.”

But because the deadline to remove a candidate from the ballot was Feb. 23, both candidate’s names will be on the May 4 general election ballot.

Neither candidate responded to KERA’s requests for comment about questions regarding their eligibility.

Another Mansfield ISD school board race will be on next month’s ballot: Incumbent Michelle Newsom faces challenger Matthew Herzberg for the Place 1 seat.

Bill Zeeble is KERA’s education reporter. Got a tip? Email Bill at You can follow him on X @bzeeble.

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Bill Zeeble has been a full-time reporter at KERA since 1992, covering everything from medicine to the Mavericks and education to environmental issues.