Standing Room Only At Pittsburg ISD School Board Meeting - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

2/20/07-Pittsburg

Standing Room Only At Pittsburg ISD School Board Meeting

Standing room only Monday night at an East Texas school board meeting. The question: did the school's Principal and Chief of Police go too far ticketing students. Pittsburg ISD board members met to debate whether or not to renew their contracts. But, some parents are calling for their dismissal because of a controversial policy where students are ticketed for not following the rules. 

More than 50 parents and teachers filled the room, overflowing into the hallway, all to hear the school board's decision on the contract renewal of the high school Principal and the district's Chief of Police.  

"We do not support the Chief of Police of the Pittsburg ISD. We feel that he's not fit for the job of working with our students, they don't respect him and he doesn't respect him and we feel that he needs to be replaced," says Susan Saunders.

Several parents spoke out, calling for their dismissal, claiming a violation of civil rights.  They say unfair tickets are being issued to students.   

"They're being criminally ticketed, that's not right and that in no way I believe is a positive way to discipline a child," says Roy Young.

But it was a room divided, as those in support of the school district wore homemade buttons to let it be known. 

"100 percent behind the school board, yes, and I think a lot of students that go to school, they feel the same way," says parent Tim Reynolds. 

Many of them were teachers, who say the tickets are necessary to discipline the children and are justified.   

" The rules that they're trying to instigate are needed to maintain order to keep students from using vulgarity and losing their tempers in classes and being disrespectful," says Tim Ruland.

After less than an hour in closed session, the school board decided to renew both contracts till June 30, 2009.

Several parents called KLTV after the meeting, one telling us she plans on speaking with a civil rights attorney about the ticketing policy.

Tracy Watler, Reporting tracy@kltv.com

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