From the Publisher – Voices of Many ask petitioners to familiarize themselves with the reason the “No Child Left Behind Act of 2001”

Shannell Knight a parent of an Edgecombe County Public School System and a member of Voices of Many addressed the community at the East Tarboro Community meeting about issues and concerns that she and some others have. V of M emailed me the following documents. Read them for yourself.

The Daily Southerner reporter had the following documentation however the letter addressed to me was addressed to her. The reporter also had documentation pertaining a more personal letter that included personal information.

Letter to Curmilus Dancy II

June 3, 2009

“The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, which reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, emphasizes student achievement and requires assessments in core subjects, which are the foundation for learning.This federal law is focusing the attention of schools and educators on fundamental knowledge and skills.”

-Author Unknown

Dear Mr. Curmilus Dancy II,

Parents and citizens of Edgecombe County are taking a stand in promoting high quality education, building partnerships between parents, teachers and school administrators, and putting a STOP to excessive non-deserving out of school suspension.

I am the proud mother of three children who attend Edgecombe County Public Schools (ECPS). It is worrisome to me that little effort seems to be exerted in challenging students academically, but zealous efforts are made when it comes to making humiliating comments, or executing non-deserving suspensions and/or detentions (these negatives do not apply to all teachers and faculty of ECPS). So I write on behalf of ALL the children and their parents, and those attending ECPS in particular, who have fewer options to choose from in supplying their children’s educational needs.

It is my belief that if the school work were sufficiently challenging for students at whatever level their development, much negative (disruptive) energy would then be channeled into more positive projects/results.

Attached are a few instances of complete disappointment, frustration and feeling of helplessness in reference to several families’ experiences or encounters with ECPS. (All information listed is either from personal experience, and/or data collected while soliciting for signatures).

Families feel that ECPS is a district where…

· Faculty members are intimated and are not welcoming to parents who advocate for their children

· Parents verbal and written request to have their child/children evaluated for exceptional children services go ignored, or the parents are persuaded not to follow through with their request

· The students aren’t challenged academically or intellectually

· Children aren’t being prepared for college

· Parents are not allowed to voice their concerns to the Superintendent because they are told that “any suspensions less than ten days are not appealing to the Superintendent”

· Parents written concerns to the superintendent go ignored

· Families have been retaliated against when they take their concerns or complaints to the Central Office

· Parents feel that the faculty at times are insensitive, unprofessional, cruel, and sarcastic to both parents and children

· Complaints made against faculty are taken lightly, or nothing is done at all

· Administration has been known to instigate confrontation between students

Once again, these negatives do not apply to all faculty members of ECPS. There are faculty members who do truly have a passion for what they do, and have the best interest of the students and families in mind.

Several parents have already, or intend on transferring their children to local private, charter, or another school in the district that may have a “better reputation”.

As a concerned parent, I will continue to be my children’s first advocate, I will continue to seek one-on-one conferences with my children’s teachers, counselors and administrative staff. I will continue to do whatever it takes for my children to receive the BEST possible education. But I hope also that this brings most needed attention to the problem on a larger scale where the needs of ALL the children will be addressed for the next school year, and every school year to come.

Representing the “Voices Of Many”,

Shanell Knight

voicesofmanync@yahoo.com

 

Letter to citizens

May 14, 2009

Dear Edgecombe County Citizens:

We are writing to ask you to familiarize yourself with the reason the “No Child Left Behind Act of 2001” was implemented. For the past two years, many parents have diligently addressed growing concerns about the manner in which parent complaints and less than 10 day suspensions are being handled at Edgecombe County Public Schools (ECPS).

“How can a child receive a fair assessment when the suspension policy is biased and creates absenteeism during critical review time?” More importantly, when the issue is brought to the attention of school administrators, concerned parents are brushed aside and accused of “over reacting” to the damage caused by biased administrative decisions. Parents and citizens of Edgecombe County are taking a stand and your support is requested in promoting the following:

  1. Quality Education for the children of Edgecombe County and Future Generations.
  2. Building partnerships between parents, teachers and school administrators to promote fair assessments.
  3. Putting a STOP to excessive non-deserving school suspensions, as result of personal bias.

The petition for cooperative action from ECPS is necessary and affects the community at large. Attached are countless examples of negative encounters with ECPS and its’ neglect to address parent concerns. We are in no way suggesting that all of ECPS staff and educators are biased, however by investing RIGHT NOW in our children’s education, demanding quality services, and banning together against mediocrity we are laying the foundation for the future of Edgecombe County and its’ citizens.

Thank you for your support.

Representing the Voices of Many,

“The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, which reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, emphasizes student achievement and requires assessments in core subjects, which are the foundation for learning.

This federal law is focusing the attention of schools and educators on fundamental knowledge and skills.”

 

The Petition

Bridging the Gap between: Parents, Teachers, and School Administrators

Parents and citizens of Edgecombe County, please take a stand with us in promoting High Quality Education, building partnerships between parents and school administrators, and help put a STOP to excessive non-deserving out of school suspension that are taking place in ECPS.

1._____________________________________________________________________

2._____________________________________________________________________

3._____________________________________________________________________

4._____________________________________________________________________

5._____________________________________________________________________

6._____________________________________________________________________

7._____________________________________________________________________

8._____________________________________________________________________

9._____________________________________________________________________

10.____________________________________________________________________

11.____________________________________________________________________

12.____________________________________________________________________

13.____________________________________________________________________

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15.____________________________________________________________________

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18._____________________________________________________________

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20._____________________________________________________________

Letter from David Bryant

May 18, 2009

Dear Ms. Knight:

Thank you for taking time from your daily schedule to share concerns regarding the educational climate of Edgecombe County’s Public Schools.  The State Board of Education and the Department of Public Instruction are always interested in hearing from concerned parents who have a vested interest in the safety and educational success of students within the community.  We value the comments you have shared and are genuinely interested in addressing your concerns. 

Having received your letter regarding Edgecombe County Public Schools, it is important for you to know that situations of this nature and how they are resolved are generally governed by state statutes which gives the legal authority to the local school district. Because of changes in North Carolina legislation, local boards of education now have general control and supervision of all matters pertaining to the public schools in their respective administrative units and they have the authority to make administrative decisions regarding situations like the one you have shared.  In this particular case, the following excerpts from legislation address the authority of the local boards of education to govern at the local level.  These statutes apply to “local control” and are referenced as follows:

G.S. 115C‑36. Designation of board.

Said boards of education shall have general control and supervision of all matters pertaining to the public schools in their respective administrative units and they shall enforce the school law in their respective units.

§ 115C‑47. Powers and duties generally.

In addition to the powers and duties designated in G.S. 115C‑36, local boards of education shall have the power or duty:  (1) To Provide an Adequate School System. – It shall be the duty of local boards of education to provide adequate school systems within their respective local school administrative units, as directed by law.

Although sympathetic to the frustration and concerns you have expressed, state legislation and/or law does not give the State Board of Education and/or the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction the authority to intervene in matters where the local school district has governing control. I would encourage you to make another appeal to your local educational agency’s central office or local board of education to inquire about the possibility of having someone look into this situation.

With Kind Regards,

David Bryant

Parent Liaison/Education Consultant

North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
Accountability Services Division / Testing Section
6314 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, N.C. 27699-6314

dbryant@dpi.state.nc.us (919.807.3775)

All e-mail correspondence to and from this address is subject to the North Carolina Public Records Law, which may result in monitoring and disclosure to third parties, including law enforcement.

>>> Many Voices <voicesofmanync@yahoo.com> 5/15/2009 6:13 PM >>>

"All e-mail correspondence to and from this address is subject to the North Carolina Public Records Law, which may result in monitoring and disclosure to third parties, including law enforcement."

See related:

From the Publisher – In response to Oliver Curtis Powell, “School administration must stop allowing children to run the system”

Tarboro NC – THE STRUGGLE FOR EDUCATION In Edgecombe County Schools by Richard H. Parker Jr. Columnist
Tarboro NC – School administration must stop allowing students to run the system by Oliver Curtis Powell
Tarboro NC – Lack of communication upsets parents, schools
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From the Publisher – In response to Oliver Curtis Powell, “School administration must stop allowing children to run the system”

First of all the 11 year old child who will be transitioning from W.A. Pattillo A + Elementary School into the middle school on next year made the “A” honor roll all year. So many times children at his age have repeated a grade or 2. Conduct was satisfactory the entire year, never received an N however he received 14 days of out of school suspension. This honor roll can be verified in the coming weeks when the paper comes out with the local schools honor roll, check the Pattillo listing.

T. Trevathan who left a reply on my blog helped me to write this response earlier than I had planned to because I have been so busy this week.

I agree that proper punishment should be given to those who deserve it however that is not always the case.

Both Powell and Trevathan has the right to their opinion and I do also.

My opinion is as follows:

Excellent article? Really? Bull manure. What I found interesting is that Powell found an opportunity to write a racist article.

Glad you asked why do I say that.

First of all the parent shared her story at an East Tarboro Community meeting and that alone made it a black thing. Powell do not know the parent nor the child so how in the hell can he say that this parent and other family members have not taught the child to properly behave. It is so many factors that were left out of the original article written by the Daily Southerner however I have the meeting on video and it can be seen here.

I am so damn glad that I know many of the issues that goes on in our schools because I am an active involved Negro. I have witnessed and have documents of some issues that have gone on in the school system since the early 90’s. I know there are issues with some parents, children and administrators because I have served on the PTO, School Improvement Team, Board of Education Advisory Committee and attended the school board meetings dearly over the years. My name can be found in most of the minutes where I addressed the board during their public comments.

Now back to the parent in which Powell is referring to. I attended the meeting and she is a productive parent who is an administrative staff person at a daycare center in Tarboro. I have been knowing her mother since the 80’s so I feel strongly this child has been taught.

I deal with parents all the time and I check them out if I do not know them personally.

The problem I have with this response from Powell is he attacked this parent’s character when he does not know her. In my opinion this was racist as hell. What Powell has done in my opinion is mislead folks who think like he, you and some others, into thinking that all black children who are having issues in the school system have not been taught to properly behave.

And lastly this parent has been trying to communicate with the school system when so many parents will not. I have seen some documentation and it is clear she is trying to reach common ground with the school system. She sent atleast one document certified to the Central Office.

The video shows how intelligent the parent is and also how she is involved in her child’s education and has been over the years.

The mentality that Powell has shown is some of the same mentality that is being displayed by some administrators. I do not allow my children to disrupt their classes and I be damn if I am going to support a parent that would allow such.

If a child deserves punishment then so be it but I be damn if it is fair to single out all black children just because.

Funny as hell there is no mention in the original article where Voices of Many have around 700 names who signed a petition. So does this not say something? Go figure.

See related:

Tarboro NC – School administration must stop allowing students to run the system by Oliver Curtis Powell

Raleigh NC – Fetzer takes reins of state GOP

Former Raleigh Mayor Tom Fetzer was elected chairman of the N.C. Republican Party late Saturday, after a tough partisan fight marked by personal accusations and a lawsuit.

Fetzer defeated Chad Adams, a conservative activist on leave from the John Locke Foundation, on a second ballot. Adams conceded the race before the final tally. (News & Observer)

See related:

Raleigh NC – Fetzer plans to sue over e-mail forward

Rocky Mount NC – Weatherization work must clear big hurdles

The DCN was present to capture the meeting on video. C. Dancy II – DCN Publisher

Workers interested in tapping a pool of federal dollars designated for making homes more energy efficient must first clear obstacles of state-mandated training and up to $80,000 in up-front investments.

That was the message delivered Thursday to a group of about 30 general contractors and construction workers gathered at the Opportunities Industrialization Center in Rocky Mount. (Rocky Mount Telegram)