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AISD FFA teachers leave barn

AISD FFA teachers leave barn

By Basil Gist

Staff Writer

       Joined by several parents from the ag program as well as her husband, Jennifer Gilbreath addressed the board regarding her and other teachers’ departure from Aubrey ISD during the school board’s June 19 meeting.

The 17-year Aubrey ISD teacher opened by reminding the board of the good she’s done in the program during her tenure.

       “Over the last 17 years, I’ve stood here time and time again to bring you news of our student’s success,” Jennifer said.

“Tonight, even though you may not care, I stand before you to tell you my side of the story and the reason why I have chosen to leave what I considered my forever home.”

AISD FFA teachers leave barn

She spoke of the 50 banners, 13 kids at state competition and over $150,000 livestock sales she and her team helped make happen this year before recounting the events she attributed to her being passed over for the new ag lead position and proposed administrative relocation to the middle school, which included a pair of meetings beginning in April.

“When I arrived, I was interrogated for over an hour regarding allegations against me that I had no idea where they had come from,” Jennifer said. “Such things as that I had neglected my duties, had a lack of knowledge to fill my duties, allegations of discrimination and that I had not cultivated a positive relationship with students.”

Of those that attended the meeting, two parents from the ag program, Ella Welch and Brian Paben, spoke on Gilbreath’s behalf.

       “She would have gotten just as much support had it not just been a handful of people that were invited to speak to a certain administrator,” Paben said. “She has gone to bat for every kid in that program one way or another, and it’s a shame that you guys take the word of a select few parents without hearing all of us. You’re doing it wrong.”

Her husband, Justin Gilbreath, also addressed the board.

“My family has lost faith in those that lead Aubrey ISD as you let a 17-year loyal veteran teacher leave for another position because administration wouldn’t stand up to parents,” Justin said. “In 17 years, my wife never had any issues until a parent began to attack other teachers in the department and then turned on my wife. This parent single-handedly ruined this program.”

As the community forum concluded, Board President Jim Milacek spoke to the matter, prefacing by reminding those present that the board could only address the topic on a factual level as necessitated by the Texas Open Meetings Act.

“At the beginning of this year, all the ag teacher contracts were approved for the 2024-25 school year with the exception of one who resigned prior to that approval,” Milacek said. “No teacher in that department was terminated or not renewed or forced to resign. However, resignations within that department did occur.”

Milacek exclusively addressed the ag lead position regarding the department’s resignations.

AISD FFA teachers leave barn

“What occurred was no different than an assistant principal interviewing for an assistant principal position, not receiving the position, and resigning to seek another opportunity in another district,” Milacek said.

After Jennifer reacted from her seat in the gallery, Milacek continued.

“It is what it is,” Milacek said, prompting jeers.

He moved to the next item of business before they had died down.

Later in the meeting, the board discussed the high connection fees maintained by the Mustang Special Utility District.

“What we’re paying Mustang Water to connect to the water at our new elementary school is $410,000,” board member Terry Brockett said. “It is absolutely incredible.”

After further conversation between the members of the board, Chief Financial Officer Eric Hough and construction consultant Dr. Scott Nivens, the board opted to table authorizing the payment of that fee until further research could be done into whether the ‘connection fee,’ which several members called an impact fee under a different name, was legal.

“Knowing that we’re going to have additional projects and assuming this connection fee list exists, we need to get a copy of it and get it to our attorneys and engineers,” Brockett said.

1 Comment

Jun 29

The AG teachers changed our lives in the most positive ways! Mrs G and her entire family are awesome!!! Mrs G went above and beyond for her students. I’m still in shock and tears over the district’s decision. My granddaughter’s entire high school schedule is AG based classes. She is studying to become an equine veterinarian. She is devastated and been crying for weeks. She loves Mrs G. She is the only teacher that has brought my granddaughter out of her shell. The district made a huge mistake on this whole situation!!!

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