Students come together to petition Lee Co. Board of Education - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Students come together to petition Lee Co. Board of Education

BEULAH, AL (WTVM) - A grassroots effort, led by Beulah High School students is underway as they petition the Lee County Board of Education.

Beulah High School Sophomore, Travis Johnson and other student leaders have started a petition. This was to urge the Lee County School Board to rehire seven Beulah teachers. They learned the teachers' contracts would not be renewed on Friday.

"These teachers, they were our friends, our mentors our family and to us they were brilliant teachers they have given us so much and helped us strive to where we are today,” Travis Johnson said, Beulah High student.

Lee County Superintendent, Dr. Mac McCoy, released a statement saying, "The last thing any superintendent wants to do is not renew an employee. Having started my career in education as a teacher, my heart breaks for each and every employee who receives a notice of non-renewal."

Dr. McCoy says delays in state funding, needs for pending certification issues to be resolved and the desire for high quality instruction led to the difficult decisions.

There were 30 employees who were let go, system wide and this impacted ten of the 14 schools.

Beulah High lost seven teachers, Smiths Station High lost six and Sanford Middle also lost six. Historically, 13 employees were let go in 2014, 16 in 2013 and 46 in 2012.

“I just couldn't get my mind on the exam because I looked up and I saw a face of sadness of remorse,” Johnson explained.

Johnson says teachers found out they were being let go during finals. Many teachers and students cried and this made testing even more difficult.

“I'm going to take this petition to the board of education and hopefully help them change their minds on bringing back our teachers,” he said.

Superintendent Dr. McCoy, applauds Travis Johnson and the other students at Beulah high school for standing up for what they think is right.

Dr. McCoy says he too is doing what he thinks is right for the students. He says the board of education will take their concerns and their petition seriously.

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