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LISD seeks AG opinion on personnel matter

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By LPR Staff
Editor/POST-REGISTER

Several hours worth of negotiation in executive session, spanning two separate meetings of the Lockhart Independent School District Board of Trustees, ended late Monday night when the Board announced a decision to turn the matter over to the Attorney General of the State of Texas.

According to the posted agenda for Mond

ay’s special called meeting, the board spent a lengthy executive session with attorneys discussing a “transfer made by the superintendent,” and “compliance with Texas Government Code…”

A statement released by LISD attorney Heather R. Rutland on Tuesday morning said the crux of the question was whether certain personnel action carried out [by Superintendent Dr. Jose Parra] were consistent with the state’s nepotism laws.

Rutland went on to explain that the trustees opted to seek the opinion from the Attorney General’s Office as to whether the transfers in question were made in accordance with the law, because the “specific issue with which the Board is faced is not well-settled.”

After receiving an opinion from the Attorney General’s Office, Rutland said, the board would take further action on the matter, if further action is required.

Monday evening’s discussion was a carryover from the board’s regular business meeting on Monday, Sept. 20, 2010.

In other business last week, the board heard an extensive presentation regarding possible upgrades or new school construction, based upon a study contracted by the district earlier this year.

Mike Smith, from Education Services and Solutions of Austin presented the report to the trustees, whom he commended for their consistent commitments to invest in the HVAC systems at district campuses.

Upwards of $500,000 has been earmarked out of district budgets in the last few years for air conditioning systems, which from time to time seem to struggle at all except the district’s two newest campuses, Bluebonnet Elementary and Lockhart Junior High School.

In addition, one of the key points of discussion is the addition of security doors at the older elementary, in particular Clear Fork Elementary and Plum Creek Elementary.

The need for the doors, according to principals of those campuses, is the fact that the architecture of the schools allows visitors immediate access to hallways containing classrooms, without ever having to visit or pass the office.

The schools were built at a time in history when such security measures were not necessary, the principals said, but because things have changed and student safety is paramount, the doors are a necessary expense.

In other business, the board recognized four members of the Lockhart High School Air Force Junior ROTC for their performance at training classes over the summer. Students recognized were: Garrett Tedford, Britt Talbert, Kaitlyn Hawkins and Delaney Gray.

The board also accepted a donation from the Lockhart Evening Lions Club in the amount of $816.95. The donations are collected each summer by the organization to help provided school supplies for disadvantaged children within the Lockhart Independent School District.

The LISD Board of Trustees routinely meets on the fourth Monday of each month at 6:30 p.m. in the Conference Center at Lockhart High School. The meetings are open to the public, and parents, residents and other interested parties are encouraged to attend.

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