The Louisiana Association of Educators holds a rally this afternoon to show their support for Rene Rost middle school teacher Deyshia Hargrave. She was arrested Monday after criticizing a raise for the superintendent, while teacher’s wages have been stagnant for nearly a decade. LAE President Debbie Meaux says they are holding this rally to expose what school and governmental boards are doing.
"I think there is this trend amongst a lot of governmental bodies, to try to shut down or at least limit the ability of citizens to speak."
In a video shown on NBC’s Today show, it is clearly seen that Hargrave is being shut up by board President Anthony Fontana with him saying, “Alright. Stop. Stop right now”. Meaux says Fontana’s actions were completely out of line.
"Taxpayer money is being used to pay them. So they should be listening to their taxpayers. I don't think that that happened for Deyshia and I think that in a lot of public meetings, that is not happening for a lot of our citizens."
Meaux says the LAE understands the role of the board president is to keep order during a meeting, but feels nothing occurred to demand the treatment Hargrave received from the Abbeville City Marshal Reginald “Reggie” Hilts as she was escorted out of the meeting.
"There really was not disorder, not to the scale that required the kind of response it got."
The rally will be held at 3:45pm at Magdalen Square in downtown Abbeville.