B.I.S.D demographer debate

12 News HD has learned that Beaumont ISD leaders want to hire a Texas political operative -- at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars -- to serve as a demographer for the district.

Critics of Matt Angle say he is a heavily funded, partisan Democratic leader who has never been a demographer.

They argue spending close to $30,000 for Angle is an outrage because the district is supposed to be an objective, nonpartisan public organization and because of the taxpayer funding of the district in the $389 million bond.

Beaumont attorney Michael Getz - who sued the district over the May elections told 12 News, "It appears BISD is trying to politicize the school district. It's supposed to be about the school children - not partisan politics. Mr. Angle is a very partisan politician. I don't know what would qualify him to be a demographer or what would make the district want to get rid of the current demographer..."

BISD attorney Melody Chappell says the previous demographer, Dr. Tom Sanders, was replaced because of his

health issues. She says Angle is needed because the district had to get someone familiar with litigating redistricting cases.

Texas Education Agency spokesperson Deetta Culbertson told 12 News HD even if Angle is not qualified there is nothing to prevent BISD from hiring him. Culbertson called it a "local control" issue and said if anyone has issues with the hiring - it's up to the public to take it to BISD.


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