Hello and goodbye from two leaders in education

Jimmy Simmons and Carrol Thomas


Aug. 20 will mark the last convocation ceremony for Beaumont Independent School District Superintendent Carrol Thomas as his retirement is set to take effect January 2013 or sooner if he accepts a buyout of the last couple months of his contract as proposed by the BISD Board of Trustees. Thomas, in his 16th year as superintendent of the Beaumont school district, announced his retirement earlier this year, and Dr. Timothy Chargois has been named BISD’s new leader. Thomas leaves with 40 years in education, a stint as the highest paid superintendent in Texas, and mixed reviews from the public he has served for more than a decade.

A memo to BISD employees calls for the school-year kick-off to commence at the Ozen Fannett Street campus starting a little after 8 a.m. Prior to the convocation, a wellness fair has been arranged for district employees where information about employee insurance will be available, as will vision and hearing screenings, and medical checkups. Employees can catch the bus from any campus to the health fair promptly at 7:15 a.m., Thomas’ memo states.

Thomas advised he will be at the event to address those in attendance with information pertaining to salaries, test scores, incentive pay “and the general state of the district,” he said.

Classes resume for BISD students Aug. 27.

Another farewell speech of sorts will be held Monday, Aug. 20, when Lamar University President Jimmy Simmons hosts the last fall convocation of his career with the institution. Simmons is wrapping up a decades-long career with LU on Jan. 31, 2013. After a 9:30 a.m. reception in the Studio Theatre, the university’s convocation will be held in the in the University Theater at 10 a.m.

Lamar’s fall semester also begins Aug. 27.