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updated 1:10 PM, Jul 29, 2021 America/Chicago

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Schools discuss robbery arrests

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020421 trinity isd 1TONY FARKAS | TCNS Trinity ISD Superintendent John Kaufman and other administration officials present December employee of the month plaques to Magaly Zamora, professional; Ibeth Caceres, paraprofessional; and Crista Caceres, support, at the monthly School Board meeting on Jan. 26.

By Tony Farkas

TRINITY — The Trinity ISD School Board heard a presentation regarding two students who were arrested in November for allegedly breaking into the high school and destroying school property.

Isaac Debose, pastor of Lone Star Missionary Baptist Church, said that while the events of December were tragic, he believes the two teens are being falsely accused.

The two teens were arrested Dec. 3 and face charges of criminal mischief greater than $30,000 but less that $150,000 and burglary of a building, both felony charges.

“The accusation doesn’t bother me, as I understand that someone needs to pay,” Debose said. “What really bothers me is the way this process is being handled.”

Debose said the system has been unfair to certain types of people, but said that because of the open investigation, he declined to offer specifics.

020421 trinity isd 2TONY FARKAS |TCNS Trinity ISD Superintendent John Kaufman and other administration officials present a January employee of the month plaque to Karen Shelton, professional, and the School Board meeting on Jan. 26. Other January honorees (not pictured) are Bridget Ladnier, paraprofessional, and Cassie Thompson, support.

He said that the students have been publicly humiliated by this ordeal.

“At what point does this go beyond hearsay or sub-par investigative work,” he said. “We need answers and we need results. The officers need to do their due diligence, and if there is no evidence, they need to be released.

“These children need to … salvage what’s left of their senior year,” Debose said. “This is so wrong on so many levels. The people will not stand for it. We, as a people, will talk to whoever we need to talk to and take whatever measures we need to take to seek justice.”

In other business, the board:

•extended full pay for staff who are out with COVID through the end of the school year. The program ended Dec. 31;

•approved 300 pages worth of changes to the school policy manual, based on recommendations by the Texas Association of School Boards. Local changes include additional cybersecurity training, adding a grievance process for terminated at-will employees, and setting parameters for the administration of non-prescription drugs;

•discussed the system’s academic performance perform, which is done annually. However, since there was no testing done last year, and no testing will be done this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the numbers that were provided were from 2018;

•approved a change to the school calendar regarding COVID-related days;

•approved the adoption of a food service procurement manual; and

•called May 1 as an election day. Board positions held by Elizabeth King and Judy Bishop are up for election this year.

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