GCT Band Director's contract terminated for violating standards - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

GCT Band Director fired for violating ethical, professional standards

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PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - A Greene County Tech teacher is out of a job after his contract was terminated by the GCT School Board of Education. School officials voted to terminate GCT High School Band Director, James Holt's contract in a special meeting Tuesday night.

Greene County Tech Superintendent, Jerry Noble told Region 8 News that Holt's contract was terminated for violating ethical and professional conduct standards.

Noble said Holt was sending an inordinate number of text messages to a 7th grade female student without the knowledge of her parents. Noble said while they don't know the content of those messages, during one six hour time frame, he sent more than 230 messages to that student.

Noble explained regardless of the content of the messages, school officials felt the amount of messages sent was inappropriate and very concerning.

Noble went on to explain that to comply with the administrative directive at GCT, Holt was required to copy parents when sending text messages to a student. Being that he didn't, Holt violated the standards of Professional Conduct of the Rules Governing the Code of Ethics for Arkansas Educations.

Superintendent Noble gave Region 8 News a statement regarding the situation.
 
"The Greene County Tech Board of Education and Administration will do everything possible to ensure that staff members maintain a professional relationship with each student, both in and outside the classroom," Noble said. "We want our patrons to know and understand that when it comes to the termination of a teacher's contract, due process must be followed which usually takes between 30 and 50 days.   It is during this time that the district is sometimes criticized for not releasing information; however, personnel information in such cases can't be released until the process is completed."

Region 8 News will continue to track this story and bring you any new details as they become available.

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