Teacher questioning administrative pay raises removed from board meeting in handcuffs

Teacher questioning administrative pay raises removed from board meeting in handcuffs

Teacher questioning administrative pay raises removed from board meeting in handcuffs

A Louisiana teacher was forcibly removed from a school board meeting and arrested after saying that pay raises for leadership on the board was a "slap in the face" to all teachers.

Her comments prompted board president Anthony Fontana to rule Hargrave out of order during the meeting, KATC reported. Next, she is seen on the hallway floor, screaming as the marshal handcuffs her behind her back.

At one point the educator tells the board that it was a "slap in the face" for the school superintendent to be handed a new contract that entitles him to performance-based pay rises, while declining to follow suit with teachers and other school based workers.

"I am not, you just pushed me to the floor", Hargrave responds.

'We work very hard with very little to maintain the salaries we have.

The Abbeville town marshal's office, which made the arrest, the superintendent's office and the school board president all declined further comment on the incident.

The teacher was booked into jail last night, even though the superintendent told KATC shortly after the meeting that he had called to inform police that the system didn't want any charges pressed. In a longer video posted on YouTube by a reporter for the Abbeville Meridional, the officer is heard telling Hargrave outside the building that he had given her "many lawful orders to leave".

From there, she was forced to the ground and handcuffed.

As people in the audience agreed with Hargrave, Fontana banged his gavel multiple times and ordered Hargrave to stop talking because the raise "wasn't on the agenda" - promoting several others in the meeting to disagree.

Ike Funderburk, Abbeville's city attorney and prosecutor, said he has reviewed the video and won't be prosecuting her.

Hargrave, a middle school language arts teacher, spoke prior to the school board's vote on a new and questioned the school board's decision to consider a $38,000 raise for Superintendent Jerome Puyau.

Hargrave continues to ask her question when a city marshal approaches her and tells her she needs to leave.

She was placed in an Abbeville police patrol auto.

"I personally apologize for the Vermilion Parish School Board", she said, adding, "This is a sad day for Vermilion Parish". It is every citizen's right to speak up for their beliefs'.

Aside from these remarks, our association will honor Ms. Hargrave's wishes and refrain from any additional comments at this time, as the case is ongoing. The organization says the actions of the officer as 'unacceptable and raise serious constitutional concerns'.

It is unclear if the marshal was acting on his own accord or on the orders of board members.

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