11 Kountze ISD teachers to lose jobs - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

11 Kountze ISD teachers to lose jobs

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Almost a dozen teachers of the Kountze Independent School District won't be returning next year.

"Quite a few of us, myself included... want to know why, what's going on," Kountze High School U.S. History teacher William Hull told 12News Monday night.

After a lengthy executive session at Monday night's meeting, Kountze ISD trustees voted against renewing the contracts of 11 probationary teachers (4 from Kountze High School, 4 from Kountze Middle School, 1 from Kountze Intermediate School, and 2 from Kountze Elementary School) in an effort to cut costs.

"My daughter is dyslexic, she needs that one-on-one attention," Kountze resident Bambi Boykin told 12News Tuesday afternoon. Boykin has two children who go to Kountze Elementary School.

"Other students need the one-on-one attention and they won't get it if they cut teachers."

Interim Superintendent Reese Briggs says the cuts will raise the district's student-to-teacher ratio from 14:1 to roughly 25:1. But Briggs said when it came down to it, the decision was simply based on a lack of funds. Briggs says the district will get $900,000 less in state and federal funding next school year, and that the cuts will help save an estimated $450,000.

But Boykin hopes an alternative solution can be found.

"They have fundraisers, all kinds of things they can do to make up, help the students," she said.

And Hull is staying optimistic, saying Kountze schools will need more teachers.
"Some hire-backs will have to happen, they've even said as much that they're going to let people go but will have to hire back some," Hull said.
Trustees also voted to eliminate the assistant principal position at Kountze High School. The position is currently held by Chet Deaver.
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