Cooper: No ‘Merit To Any Of The Charges’
Lafayette Parish School System Superintendent Pat Cooper has disclosed information about the Parish School Board’s investigation into his practices.
The superintendent says he met this week with Dennis Blunt, the Baton Rouge attorney tasked with the investigation.
"I don’t think there’s any merit to any of the charges."
“I don’t think there’s any merit to any of the charges,” Cooper said.
Cooper says the attorney’s preliminary report reveals seven main points of concern, more than half of which are personnel issues the superintendent says he manages according to Louisiana’s Act 1, the 2012 law that transfers the handling of personnel matters from the school board to the superintendent.
Although Cooper says he’s confident he could ultimately be vindicated through appeal, it only takes six votes from the nine-member board to fire him — and that’s the same number of board members that have constantly pitted themselves against his administration.
Two of those board members — Rae Trahan, District 9, and Greg Awbrey, District 6 — have announced they won’t be running for re-election in the Nov. 4 race. District 1 Board Member Mark Allen Babineaux is also part of the opposing majority, and he instead filed qualifying paperwork for a 15th Judicial District judgeship.
Board members Shelton Cobb, District 3; Kermit Bouillion, District 5; and Mark Cockerham, District 7, were the three board members who gave Cooper the highest possible score of 8 in an annual evaluation conducted earlier this summer.