Sam Allen, president of Friends of Valdosta City Schools (FVCS) and former Valdosta School Superintendent said:
I promised myself three years ago when I left this place, that one thing I would never do, and that would come and attend another board meeting.He said he came for a good cause this time.
The CUEE group is calling this unification all of a sudden. And I think that’s just a play on words, and a play on our intelligence. Because for thirty years we’ve called this process consolidation. Now all of a sudden we’re calling it unification.And that’s the point, isn’t it? There’s no plan, because there is no evidence that “unification” has any benefit.
We’re calling it unification because the only thing that we want to change is the central office. We want all the schools to remain the same. The only thing we want to change is what goes on right here at 1204 Williams Street.
Sam Allen said a lot more, including this:
Nobody can promise what will happen after November 8th except the men who are sitting on the Lowndes County Board of Education.And the next day he was there when those same men said they supported the Valdosta Board’s statement against consolidation by passing a resolution of support and against consolidation.
There is something that we don’t know about. There is something that someone is not telling the common everyday public about why this process is so important. This process came out of Impact 2012.
And they fooled me; I’ve got to admit I was part of this. I admit it. Because they told me that we are finally going to get an official study done that will prove once and for all whether having a dual school institute has a negative impact on economic development. They hired the Chamber of Commerce; they hired the Carl Vinson Institute.
They sent the Carl Vinson Institute back twice because it didn’t tell them what they wanted to hear. And when it came back the third time, is my understanding, it still didn’t tell them what they wanted to hear. So they surveyed their own members.
Sam Allen asked a better question:
Why can’t Winnersville have two great school systems?Sam Allen addressed the cost saving excuse, and pointed to the only duplication between the two school systems:
The only duplication you have is right there, sitting in that seat right there.He was pointing at Superintendent Cason. Everybody laughed.
There’s more in the video by George Boston Rhynes:
Why can’t Winnersville have two great school systems? —Sam Allen @ VBOE 29 August 2011
education, referendum, consolidation, statement,
Work Session, Valdosta Board of Education (VBOE),
Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, 29 August 2011.
Video by George Boston Rhynes for K.V.C.I.
As George Boston Rhynes wrote for K.V.C.I.:
In times like these our community need real people; people that will stand up for what is right; just and carry the desires of the community to higher heights and deeper depths; depths that will result in bringing into existence a new focused reality; a reality wherein we the see Mr. Sam Allen and former School Superintendent as a real human being. One that can never fully retire from the community that he served and love. So let us work to keep the camp fire burning for the good of all citizens in our beloved community. Therefore, we must never allow ourselves to be controlled and suppressed in 2011. Thanks for being a voice in your community!