School Board President Resigns After Teacher Arrested During School Board Meeting

January 19, 2018Jan 19, 2018

Vermilion Parish School Board President Anthony Fontana is going to resign, according to WBRZ News. The resignation comes in the midst of a controversy surrounding the forced arrest of a school teacher during a meeting earlier this year.

In a letter to the newspaper on Friday, he announced his intentions to resign. 

“When I was re-elected three years ago for my sixth time, my goal was that this would be my last term. That is why I announced last year that I would not seek re-election in 2018," the letter states. "However, over the course of the last two years many things have occurred that made me think long and hard about resigning my seat."

The school board president then remarked that he felt he needed to ensure that Superintendent Jerome Puyau got a new contract, and that was accomplished at the last board meeting. Fontana, currently serving his sixth term on the board, had already announced that he planned to run for re-election in 2018. It was recent events that caused him to change his mind. 

It was reported in early January that a Louisiana teacher questioned whether the school's superintendent should receive a raise. Suddenly, she was ushered out of the school board meeting and handcuffed for her actions, according to NPR

The dramatic arrest, which was captured on live video, has sparked an outrage throughout the United States. In fact, the video went absolutely viral, garnering more than 1.7 million views on YouTube. The school board offices for Vermilion Parish were shut down on Tuesday after receiving numerous threats by unhappy residents and video viewers.

The Vermilion Parish teacher who was arrested, Deyshia Hargrave, will not face any charges for her conduct. 

According to Ike Funderburk, who is the city attorney in Abbeville, the school board has expressed that they do not wish to pursue any charges against the teacher. 

"I have reviewed the video and I am not going to approve any charges against the teacher," Ike Funderburk remarked. "I have talked with the attorney for the school board. They do not wish to pursue any charges against the teacher."

During the board meeting, the teacher stood up to voice her opposition to the superintendent getting a raise. 

"I have a serious issue with a superintendent or any person in a position of leadership getting any type of raise," she said. "It's absurd that we're even considering giving someone a raise when these teachers are working this hard and not getting a dime."

You can watch the full incident in the video below. 

"What are you doing, can you explain?" Hargrave asks. 

The officer then ordered her to "stop resisting." 

She replied that she wasn't resisting and then explained that the officer pushed her to the floor. 

The officer then said that he gave her numerous order to leave and ushers her into the back of a police vehicle. 

After voicing her opinion, she complied with an order by an officer to leave the room. But soon the video shows the officer forcibly putting Hargrave in handcuffs as other teachers voiced outrage.

In recent news, paramedics were called to the Washington home of Justice Sonia Sotomayor on Friday morning after a health scare.

Next: Supreme Court Justice Treated by Paramedics After Health ScareJan 19, 2018