Monday night at Cathedral of Faith Baptist Church in Beaumont a meeting was put on by the Baptist Ministers Union of Beaumont, the Ministerial Brotherhood Alliance of Beaumont, and the NAACP, for worried parents, and citizens to voice their concerns about a possible merger between Beaumont Ozen and Central. The merger being one possibility after Beaumont Central was damaged by Harvey.
Of the group of 70 plus, a large number represented Beaumont Central, and when asked, many representing both schools were against a merger.
Many concerns were heard about the cost of a new building for Central or a new high school if there were to be a merger. There were also concerns about UIL eligibility for both schools. BISD may be in a rush to decide this merger due to UIL numbers being submitted last week and whether or not the schools will play as 5A or 6A next year. There were also concerns about how a merger would affect high ranking students’ academic standing within the schools, as well as the potential for those students to get scholarships, if they have to compete with a larger student body.
Herman Davis, a former Central graduate with five children in the district, says regardless of if the schools merge or not, the focus needs to be on what is best for the children.
“Regardless of what they decide with a merger, or not merger we are going to have the same problems,” said Davis. “Because at the end of the day it’s about the kid and the quality of education they get. We can build a new building but if we don’t fix the internal problems the educational problems that we have then it’s not going to do our kids any good.”
As of right now, there is still a lot to be determined by BISD, and a lot of unanswered questions for parents.