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Beaumont teachers protest job cuts
BEAUMONT-By Jennifer Gordy
Horns were blaring for as a group of Beaumont teachers and concerned residents held signs protesting the pending reduction of force approved by the school board last week.
Protest organizer Kathy Wallace Martin says, "TEA got grand support when it was announced the problem ... the board's arrogance will not allow them to step aside."
Martin is calling for the resignation of Superintendent Dr. Timothy Chargois and she's not the only one. Teacher supporter Ricky Jason says,
"The teachers shouldn't have to pay for the corruption in BISD. I think Dr. Chargois needs to step down immediately because these teachers got families.'
Martin says she decided to organize the protest after last Thursday's meeting when she became upset that the very people who have put the district in a financial mess, will be the ones who decide who loses or keeps their jobs. Martin says,"It's the teachers who are keeping the district going"
The reduction of teachers is expected to result in an increase in class size. Teacher Nicole Baker says she left the classroom several months ago due to the stress BISD has caused her.
Baker says, "I know what our class sizes already look like at my campus. Contrary to what they said at the board meeting. An increase in class size is going to be very detrimental to our students"
Martin says teachers may have to be cut to balance the budget, but hopes it will be the last resort.
Martin says, "Teacher jobs may have to be cut ultimately, but I want it to be done after everything else has been looked at."
And Martin feels it should be handled by the TEA, not Chargois and what she calls his band of thieves. Martin says, "Do what's right in memory of great educators and board members who brought us up. Let the honor and integrity return to BISD."