We’re sorry for the delay in regard to the outcome of last night’s School Board meeting. We needed some time to discuss our next steps. The Board of Commissioners approved the ’07 budget without any line item for successful schools. Our finance committee is reviewing the BCPSS budget as we speak, and is identifying revenue that is being allocated for unessential items/services so that we can have it redirected to classrooms and students. Our Treasurer will meet with Commissioner Hettleman next week to explain how we are not trying to take money away from other schools. We will also continue to rally the support of City Council members to see if they can help since they give the final approval of the school board budget. Finally, we have an interesting idea that we have come up with to suggest to the State, that we are just starting to flesh out. More on that later…
Last night was an expected move on the part of BCPSS, so we are not discouraged, but more determined than ever. In the end, we believe that justice and persistence will win out. What started as a struggle for the rights of children at New Song Academy has now turned into a struggle for the rights of every child in the City. In The Sun today, the City has once again said that they will take away from successful schools to give to failing schools by moving their strongest principals to the failing middle schools. We’re back to where we started when we identified that BCPSS has one goal – sustain failure. We want to know why they aren’t focusing on developing competent new leadership instead of shuffling people around. Where will the principals of the failing schools go - to the openings created in the successful schools due to the transfers? We have to keep working to break the cycle of failure.
We have built up momentum due to your strong support. You can help keep our message alive by e-mailing the School Board members to tell them that we are disappointed but not discouraged, the Mayor to tell him “Now is your chance to show the leadership we need!” and City Council members to say you cannot vote on a school system budget that has no incentives for success. Some of us have had the opportunity to sing our message solo, but our message only has power because those of you who make up the choir continue to shout out the refrain.
“Many people fear nothing more terribly than to take a position which stands out sharply and clearly from the prevailing opinion. The tendency of most is to adopt a view that is so ambiguous that it will include everything and so popular that it will include everybody. Not a few people who cherish lofty and noble ideals, hide them under a bushel for fear of being called different.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Thank you for your willingness to be “different!”