Letter to editor:
Ben Bolt-Palito Blanco Community Members,
Our great community has been in the media and on social networks these past few weeks, giving you false information. Some of the community members of our great Badger Nation have formed a Taxpayer Association to address some of the false statements and give you the FACTS.
· There are 4 board members (Maria Garza, Steven Perez, Jessica Molina, Arnold Barrera) that are pushing for the Superintendent (Dr. Mike Barrera) out of the district. He HAS NOT had any formal write ups and his last evaluation in February was outstanding. The Board voted to extend Dr. Barrera’s contract by one year which will now expire in June 2024.
· There are only 3 ways to break the contract with the superintendent
o He resigns
o He gets fired (The board must have documentation which they DO NOT)
o He gets a buyout (Costly for the District)
· Superintendent’s contract is about $125,000 a year. Buying out his contract would mean paying lawyer fees, plus the amount that is agreed upon. If he doesn’t agree to a buy out, it could go to court which would cost the district more money. So, the cost of this buy out could be way more than some are stating.
· If you buy out a superintendent, TEA will withhold that amount from the monies that the district gets. (Basically, stating if you can afford to pay off your Superintendent, then you don’t need these extra funds.)
· Districts can only use LOCAL FUNDS to buy out a Superintendent; currently the district has $63,000 of local funds in the reserve. WHERE DO THEY PLAN TO GET THE REST!!! Local funds come from YOUR TAXPAYER DOLLARS!!!!
WHAT HAS THE SUPERINTENDENT DONE FOR OUR SCHOOL/COMMUNITY SINCE BEING HIRED
· When Dr. Mike Barrera was hired the school district was in the hole for over $600,000. The district is on track to have over $1.3 million in Fund balance after this school year.
· Improved overall academic rating for the district from a D to a B.
· Improved the District’s financial integrity rating system of Texas (FIRST) from a D to a B
· Managed to secure grants to improve security and safety of the District Campuses. (new cameras and fencing)
· Doubled the number of CAREER READINESS PROGRAMS. (Career and Technology)
· In the process of starting a program at the Palito-Blanco Campus to bring a College and Career Readiness Academy for all school age students in Jim Wells County. This program would offer Dual enrollment/High Demand/High Wage Certifications such as Vet Tech/HVAC/ Welding/ Drone certifications/Criminal Justice/Health Science/Nursing just to name a few.
· Paid off a significant amount of Bonds owed, bringing us closer to building new and improved campuses.
Why spend YOUR TAX DOLLARS on getting rid of a superintendent that, in his short time here, has done so much for our district. These funds could be used in so many more ways. Do not allow these 4 board members to put our district back in the RED. Remind them that YOU elected them there.
The next Board meeting is on TUESDAY, OCT. 19TH. Come show your support for the Superintendent and STOP THE BUYOUT. LET THOSE FOUR BOARD MEMBERS KNOW THAT YOU WANT THEM TO RESIGN!!!
CALL your Board President Maria Garza and let her know you are NOT HAPPY!!!!
Concerned Ben Bolt-Palito Blanco Community Member