Newspaper Archive of
Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
March 18, 2015     Hays Free Press
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March 18, 2015

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@ + MUSIC FEST Old Settler's Music Festival pulls in big name talent. - Page 1C Hays Free Press * March 18, 2015 Page 3B PHOTO BY KIM HILSENBECK Local law enforcement and fire fighters worked the mock accident scene during the Shattered Dreams program at Lehman High School last Thursday. The event aims to prevent students from drinking and driving. Senior Chloe Klingman, shown below, portrayed the drunk driver who went to the Hays County Jail following the crash. Six students "died" at the scene or at the hospital. Seventeen other students taken by the Grim Reaper became the walking dead for the rest of the day. They were not allowed to speak to anyone on campus. (View and buy photos at ~:~: iii ~ !~ The drunk driver, Chloe Klingman, 18, went through the same experience as any driver who causes such an accident. Following a field sobriety test and arrest, complete with handcuffs, she was hauled off in a Sheriff's vehicle and booked into custody. PHOTOS BY BRUCE FISHER PHOTOGRAPHY BY KIM HILSENBECK The sounds of sirens pierced the bright, sunny morning. Minutes later, fire, police and ambulance vehicles descended on the parking lot outside Lehman High School last Thursday. The school's roughly 3,000 stu- dents looked on as emergency per- sonnel worked an accident. Victims of a two-car crash, including one that was flipped on its hood, were strewn around the scene. Blood trailed the parking lot. Empty beer cans and a half-full bottle of Jim Beam were near the cars. In the middle of it all, the Grim Reaper waited for his next victims, silently canvassing the scene. The full-scale mock drunken driving crash was part of the Shat- tered Dreams program created by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Com- mission in the late 1990s. In 2001, the program came to Hays CISD under the direction of Hays County Justice of the Peace Beth Smith, along with her daughters Crystal Dixon and Tiffany Curnutt. This year marks the seventh pre- sentation to students in the district. The program alternates between Lehman and Hays high schools about every three years. The dramatization, which took months of coordination, involved the Hays County Sheriff's Office (HCSO), the police and fire depart- ments from Kyle, the Hays County Justice of the Peace Precinct 2, the Hays County Constable Precinct 2, the Texas Department of Public Safety, Seton Medical Center Hays and local professional makeup artists Jon Claeton and Andrew DeLeon. An emergency medical helicop- ter landed several minutes into the program. First responders loaded one of the "injured" students in it for a ride to Seton Medical Center Hays. That student's family was brought in and watched their son "die" at the hospital. Two other students rode in ambluances to Seton where they also perished. Two other crash victims from the mock scene were taken away in black body bags and loaded into a hearse, courtesy of Harrell Funeral Home. The drunk driver, Chloe Kling- man, 18, went through the same ex- perience as any driver who causes such an accident. Following a field sobriety test and arrest, complete with handcuffs, she was hauled off in a sheriff's vehicle and booked into custody. SHATTERED DREAMS, 4B BY ANDY SEVILLA Hays CISD childcare workers complain they were left out of the latest round of pay increases, despite the issuance of at least 1.5 percent pay jumps for all other district employees last summer. "We recently learned that as an employee group we were ineligible to receive the 1.5 percent increase that all other non-teaching employees received," Marie Jones, director for the Early Learning Center at Buda Elementary told school board members at a Feb- ruary meeting. "I don't understand that at all." The complaint is the latest in a deluge of al- leged pay inequities and data revealing Hays CISD is one of the lowest paid districts in the area. School board members have been pelted with complaints from coun- selors, assistant princi- pals, school psychologists and other employees protesting their pay and asking for raises. Jones said she and her colleagues have been working internally since September to fix what they believe to be an oversight. "We are hopeful that this inequity can be corrected so that we can continue to maintain and recruit quality staff for the program that so many teachers and employees of the district depend upon for the care of their own children," she said. All Hays CISD employ- ees are eligible to enroll their children or grand- children in any of the nine Hays Early Learning Centers, as part of their benefits package. The week before Jones lodged her complaint "1 want to apologize first of all to those who did not get a raise ,.. I was under the impression when we visited the last budget that everyone got a raise." --Sandra Bryant, HCISD trustee to the board, board Vice President Holly Raymond expressed an interest in ensuring no employee group is ignored as district officials con- tinue working to bring all workers to market rates. "I know we talked about this last week, but I was not aware that they (early learning center workers) did not receive a raise at all," Trustee Merideth Keller said at the meeting. Hays childcare workers are not included in the normal compensation book, and are paid from the district's enterprise fund, therefore they were not included in the com- pensation plan that af- forded district employees a 1.5 percent pay increase this school year, accord- ing to Human Resource Director Elaine Howard, who joined the district well after budget negotia- tions were finalized. "What they have done is they have managed themselves by giving themselves their own raises," Howard said. "Essentially, what they would do is submit individual salary change forms each year to com- pensate for not having been included as part of the regular (compensa- tion plan)." Many school board members scoffed at the reasoning behind not giving childcare work- ers raises, and said they were under the impres- sion that all employees' pay received the adjust- ment. "I want to apologize first of all to those who did not get a raise," Trustee Sandra Bryant said. "I was under the impression when we vis- ited the last budget that everyone got a raise... And I'm disappointed that we did not give everybody a raise." Howard said the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) recom- mended including the childcare workers in the districts' compensation plan as part of their sala- ry study, however, school board members declined that recommendation, as well as most others TASB made. "Your statement is correct that we did not adopt all the recom- mendations that TASB made last year. We did not have the resources to do that," Board Presi- dent Robert Limon said. "But when we did vote for the budget, I had the understanding that we did something for our teachers and that every- body else was getting a 1.5 percent increase." As the board begins tackling the upcoming school year's budget, Howard said it will be her priority to make everything clear for the board. Officials continue looking at employee pay and likely will make further adjustments as budget season delibera- tions continue. + +