Head start teachers and staff learn process for getting jobs bac - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Head start teachers and staff learn process for getting jobs back

Employees can begin to re-apply for their jobs on Dec. 21. (Photo source: WLOX News) Employees can begin to re-apply for their jobs on Dec. 21. (Photo source: WLOX News)
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

Following a take-over of the head start centers in Harrison County the new operator plans to reopen the facilities as scheduled on Jan. 5.

But for the moment, employees at the centers are left to wonder if that's when they'll be going back to work.

Head start teachers and staff members formerly employed by the Gulf Coast Community Action Agency were called into a closed door meeting Friday where they officially learned they had lost their jobs.

None of the employees who attended the meeting were willing to go on record and say what else, if anything, they learned.

A woman who did not want to be identified told WLOX that her sister was in the meeting and says the agency now temporarily in charge of the head start program held the gathering to explain the current situation, and how the employees can get their jobs back.

"Now what they're doing today is giving everybody their dismissal papers so they'll be able to file unemployment and they can draw their pensions because they'll no longer be under that company," said the woman. 

As for the woman's sister, she says she wasn't surprised when she learned the head start program would be changing hands.

"It's a lot of things that have occurred in head start, it's not the same head start that it used to be many years ago. This is a program that was ran by people but not for the children," said the woman. "Whoever comes in next time, I hope it will be orchestrated for the children and be strictly for the community."

Gulf Coast Community Action Agency board member Jefferson Lawrence says he didn't think the employees were in danger of losing their jobs permanently.

"There's a process for all of that, so that's what they're learning about today. All the job fair and everything else that's coming up with that," said Lawrence.

Head start employees can re-apply for their jobs beginning at 7:00 a.m. Monday at the Isiah Fredericks Head Start in Gulfport. The agency now overseeing the head start program, Community Development Institute, is handling the hiring process.

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