BISD puts three administrators on paid leave following attendance probe


    Subsequent to an investigation by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and an internal inquiry by The Beaumont Independent School District (BISD) related to the findings into student attendance records for the 2012-2013 school year, BISD will initiate an internal investigation.

    The Beaumont ISD will further explore the violation of the rules and laws governing student attendance accounting for the 2012-2013 year school as outlined in TEA's report in regards to the following:

    Finding 1: Investigators received complaints containing allegations

    that students who were not present in the In-School Suspension (ISS)

    classroom were still being counted as present for funding purposes on

    the Central High School (CHS), Ozen High School (OHS), and South Park

    Middle School (SPMS) campuses.

    Finding 2: Investigators received complaints containing allegations that

    11th and 12th grade students who stayed home and did not participate in

    field trips during standardized testing days at CHS were counted as

    present for funding purposes.

    Finding 3: Investigators received a complaint containing allegations

    that attendance data was being improperly changed at Jones-Clark

    Elementary School (JCES). The complaint stated that attendance coding

    was being changed in the student attendance accounting software after

    teachers had submitted their daily attendance.

    During BISD's investigation, leaders of the campuses in question during the 2012-2013 school year will be placed on paid administrative leave: Central High School Principal, Lorenzo Carr, Ozen High School Principal, Odis Norris and Assistant Director of Title Programs, Dr. Jackie Lavergne (Jones-Clark Elementary School Principal during 2012-2013). Although paid administrative leave in accordance with district policy and procedures is prudent, it does not imply guilt.

    The Beaumont ISD internal investigation will be lead by Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Dr. Dwaine Augustine and will be assisted by other district administrators. This staff will seek to determine levels of culpability that could range from a lack of training to fraud. In order for BISD to reach a judicious conclusion while preserving the integrity of the investigation and the rights of employees, the district will neither comment on the investigation nor personnel matters until the investigation has been concluded.

    To ensure a seamless transition and the continual academic success of each student, interim principals Ronald Jackson (Assistant Principal, West Brook High School), Michael Shelton (Principal, Taylor Career and Technology Center) and Paul Shipman (Director of Career Technology) have been appointed as interim campus leaders of Ozen, Central and Taylor Career and Technology, respectively.

    These administrators who will serve in their new temporary roles have a proven track record in the field of education and have been committed toward educating students in the Beaumont community and loyal to the Beaumont Independent School District.

    Bios on Interim Principals

    Ronald Jackson

    Began working for Beaumont ISD in 1995 as a teacher and coach at Vincent Middle School. While working at Vincent, he attended Prairie View A&M University and completed his master's degree in educational administration. Jackson also served as the Assistant Director for the Athletic Department, assistant principal for Jones Clark Elementary and most recently, assistant principal at West Brook High School.

    Michael Shelton

    Began working for Beaumont ISD in 1993 as a science teacher at Central High School. He taught 9th grade Integrated Physics and Chemistry and 10th grade Chemistry. Shelton received a bachelor of biology-education degree from McNeese State University and a master of education administration degree from Prairie View A & M University. Shelton served as an assistant principal at Ozen Magnet High School, principal for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School and most recently, Principal of Taylor Career and Technology Center.

    Paul Shipman

    Began working for Beaumont ISD in 1999 as a math teacher at Ozen High School. Shipman received a Bachelor of Science degree with a teacher certification in math as well as master of education degree from Lamar University as well as a Doctorate of Education from Lamar. Shipman served as assistant principal at West Brook High School, principal at Dishman Elementary, Program Evaluator and most recently, Director of Career Technology.

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