I’m writing to voice support for the Chatham County Schools Board of Education and my opposition to the “parents first” movement currently making noise within our community. These groups use words like “Liberty” and “Freedom” while banning books and imposing their religious ideologies into public school curricula in other communities and I don’t want that to happen here. I believe in ONE CHATHAM FOR ALL STUDENTS.
Putting parents first will not help our students succeed. Our current school board puts students first. Adding “noise” to our school board will not help our students succeed, but bring non-relevant conversations into student education that do not impact student growth or achievement.
Banning books like “Girls Who Code” and “Of Mice and Men” will not help our students succeed.
Parents reviewing social studies curriculum written by the State of North Carolina will not help our students succeed.
What will help our students succeed is focusing on giving them the resources they need to graduate and go on to bright and prosperous futures. This has been and should always be the focus of the board of education.
Expanding programs like AVID, which our current board members voted to do, helps our students.
Expanding programs that increase the percentage of students reading on grade level by the 3rd grade, an early indicator of high school success and on-time graduation, has been the focus of our current board members.
Supporting and respecting our teachers and pushing for salary increases so we can recruit and retain high quality professionals, will help our students.
As a community, we should spend our efforts pushing the state to be accountable. If the legislature would fund the already approved remediation plan for North Carolina public schools, Leandro (which the board passed a resolution on last year), Chatham County Schools would have an additional $18.7 million to spend.
Over the last 20 years I have worked with the Chatham Education Foundation, the Chatham Arts Council, as a PTA Board Member, as a Booster Club President, a substitute Media Assistant, PTA Thrift Shop Board Member and more. I have witnessed firsthand in almost every one of our traditional public schools the exceptional work our teaching staff and administrators are doing. Why would we want to move backward? I encourage our community to support our current Board of Education and continue to MOVE FORWARD to provide inclusive, respectful, safe and nurturing school environments for ALL students and staff.