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TCTA urging San Benito C.I.S.D. to not pursue 'District of Innovation' status

(Source: KGBT Photo)

It's a title that may sound good for educators and students, being a ‘district of innovation.’ But for San Benito C.I.S.D., it's being met with some resistance by the Texas Classroom Teachers Association.

During the November 13 regular school board meeting, Dohn Larson, Director of Legal Services for the TCTA, addressed the San Benito C.I.S.D. school board to urge them not to pursue District of Innovation status.

Even though SBCISD hasn’t implemented the DOI, Larson told CBS 4, it looked like the district has already adopted a plan.

Larson raised multiple concerns that the 550 TCTA members, who are a part of the S.B.C.I.S.D. Classroom Teachers Association, have with S.B.C.I.S.D.'s plan.

Issues surround the district wanting to exempt itself from maintaining the 22:1 student-teacher ratio in K-4 classes and hiring certified teachers, which could lead to noncertified teachers being hired.

"Research has shown that smaller student-teacher ratios promote education. If it's just a matter of convenience so you don't have to hire teachers, why won't you say it?" Larson said.

He said being exempted from the 22:1 ratio means districts could put more students in classrooms, bringing a potential risk to the quality of education.

"That teacher can spend more time focused on the student's needs when there are fewer students in the room," he explained.

When schools look to be districts of innovation, it's supposed to benefit the entire district.

Larson told CBS 4, S.B.C.I.S.D. hasn't presented any benefits.

We reached out to the San Benito C.I.S.D. administration earlier on Tuesday for a response but didn't receive a reply.

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