The joke is on Southeast Texas this month as one of Beaumont Independent School District’s highest paid employees made Texas Monthly magazine’s annual list of Bum Steer Award recipients.

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S.O.C. (Save Our Children, Children in Motion), with sponsors like the Reaud Family Foundation, H.E.B. and the Wortham Foundation, helped ensure that more than a dozen children had a merry Christmas, and provided a way for 15 families to have enough nourishment to see them into the new year.

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After suffering a childhood of neglect and abuse, many children funneled through the maze of Texas’ foster care system have few options. In a down economy, children often suffer the most. Their parents are sometimes too poor or not equipped to raise a child in a manner the state sees fit.

The numbers of such children are on the rise in Jefferson and Orange counties, up from more than 200 in 2007 to 358 as of November of this year.

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The U.S. Department of Justice has denied the Beaumont Independent School District voters who elected to change the trustee make-up of the school board from seven single member districts to five single member districts with two at large representative seats (a 5/2 plan) when called to the polls in May 2011. According to the decision letter penned by Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez, the reason for the DOJ decision is due to the retrogressive effect of instituting the change and in his opinion, racist motivations that potentially led to the change proposal in the first place.

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Port Arthur Independent School District Superintendent Johnny Brown

After roughly two months of being missing from the job, Port Arthur Independent School District Superintendent Johnny Brown has returned to his duties as of Dec. 13.

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