Texas State Representative Joe Deshotel Wednesday issued a statement expressing his support for a Texas Education Agency takeover of the Beaumont Independent School District.
STATEMENT ISSUED BY REP. DESHOTEL:
BEAUMONT, TX - State Representative Joe Deshotel said Wednesday morning that he believes a TEA takeover of B.I.S.D. may be the only way for the district to regain the trust of the community so that it can continue its duty of educating children. He believes we must move forward with the TEA staff's recommendation in order to be assured that no misdeeds or malfeasance at the administrative levels be allowed to negatively impact the district's accreditation.
During the last legislative session Deshotel sat on the Public Education committee and worked closely with Commissioner Williams on HB 5 to significantly reduce the burden of standardized tests in public schools and broaden the curriculum choices of high school students. Deshotel has also been in continued communication with the TEA Commissioner regarding the developing situation at the Beaumont Independent School District, and clearly understands it is the Commissioner's final decision. Deshotel released this statement:
Opinions on how to move forward may differ, and it was my own sincere wish that the District could have solved its internal problems and external image without action by the state, but everyone in the community knows something must change.
The controversy surrounding B.I.S.D. has caused division in our community that threatens to harm our children's educational opportunities as well as our long term economy. At this point it appears the only way for B.I.S.D. to move beyond its current set of controversies is for the TEA to appoint a Board of Managers.
With the conclusion of the TEA report and the recent indictments of corruption, the business of administering the district has distracted from its mission of teaching our children. I trust that by following TEA staff recommendations the Commissioner can confidently continue the District's accreditation.
I have no doubt that the current board and Administration want to provide the best education for the children and best working environment for its employees. However, perception is reality and the prevailing perception is that there is nothing that this current board and administration can do to regain the trust and confidence of and/or unify this community.
Any fair-minded person should know that with such an overhaul as replacing the entire Board of Trustees and Administration that some people, with only the best intentions for the district, will be inevitably negatively impacted. However, the most important fact right now is that without leadership that has a clear mandate from and support of the entire community, the students, who should be the focus of our district, will suffer.