Tag Archives: integration

Any parent is free to send their children to Valdosta Schools —Susan Wehling @ VBOE 25 October 2011

Susan Wehling made several good points Tuesday, including an invitation for CUEE to put their children where their mouth is, like she already has.

Hi, I’m a parent, and I have three kids in school right now; one just graduated.

First of all, CUEE sent me flyers… to insult my schools…. That was very hurtful for my children to read those flyers telling them how bad my schools are. My schools are not bad, and I’m very upset about that.


She also said: Continue reading

School consolidation report: can cause irreversible damage

People ask me: why do the NAACP and the SCLC oppose school consolidation? Well, here’s some recent research that backs up their position, followed by their positions. My summary: because it caused great damage last time, and this time would be no different.

Craig Howley, Jerry Johnson, Jennifer Petrie wrote 1 February 2011, Consolidation of Schools and Districts: What the Research Says and What it Means:

…the review of research evidence detailed in this brief suggests that a century of consolidation has already produced most of the efficiencies obtainable. Research also suggests that impoverished regions in particular often benefit from smaller schools and districts, and they can suffer irreversible damage if consolidation occurs.
Isn’t such irreversible damage what Rev. Floyd Rose got Mrs. Ruth Council to admit?
Rev. Rose: “…we were told about the world, where we came from, how we got here.”

Mrs. Council: “I think we did receive a better education.”
They are referring to black schools before desegregation in the 1960s.

Rev. Floyd Rose is president of the local SCLC, and here is a statement by Leigh Touchton, president of the local NAACP: Continue reading

“Maintain our focus on educating children” —Jeana Beeland

Leigh Touchton mentioned that
I had heard that some Board members were elected with intention to support consolidation but that I hadn’t heard anything about that from any of them when they were running.
They didn’t say much about it when they were running, either. Back in 2009, the only one who got elected who was asked about this issue, Jeana Bealand, pretty much dodged the question at AAUW’s Lowndes County Political Forum on 15 September 2009.

This was the forum that was the day after the VBOE meeting that drew 400 people because of Superintendent Cason’s decision about President Obama’s speech. Very few of those 400 people showed up at the forum to ask questions of their likely school board members. Maybe more people should take an interest in who is going to represent them on their school board.

Here’s the video:

Jeana Beeland answers a question about school system consolidation
Lowndes County Political Forum, AAUW, 15 Sep 2009
Video by Gretchen Quarterman for LAKE, the Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange.


Is VBOE allowed to take a position on school consolidation? —Leigh Touchton

This comment from Leigh Touchton, President, Valdosta-Lowndes NAACP, came in Monday on This is not representative of the people:
Tonight I went to the VBOE meeting and delivered the offical NAACP letter stating our branch’s opposition to consolidation. I asked Chairman Warren Lee if he would discuss with VBOE attorney Gary Moser and let me know whether they are “allowed” to take a position on this. The reason I asked this is because one of my friends says that Dr. Cason told her that “they are not allowed” to take a position on this. To my mind, employees might not be able to take a position, but elected officials representing voters ought to clearly state their position on an issue as important as school consolidation.

After the meeting was over

Continue reading

Integration did not solve all problems —Leigh Touchton

The appended came in last night as a comment on Audience interaction about CUEE @ LCDP 2 May 2011. Leigh Touchton is President of the Valdosta-Lowndes NAACP and was present at the LCDP meeting, as was NAACP First Vice President Phyllis Stallworth. -jsq
In response to the person exclaiming about the situation in the sixties: What many of our members recall vividly from that period of time is how black teachers and black principals were fired or demoted, some even went to work as custodians. Our members and their families all experienced this to some degree. Right now, Valdosta City Schools probably has fewer black administrators that at any time since integration. We have taken complaints whereby black professionals were passed over for promotion or demoted or denied a position which was given to white candidates with less experience, fewer credentials, and even in one instance, an incomplete employment application. These stories are profound and leave lasting impressions which cannot be ignored. It is very impolite for the majority to tell the minority how to feel about this. Integration, as Dr. George has clearly explained, did not solve all problems.

Our members have valid reasons for feeling the way we do, we feel that the rights of all children to achieve are also interwoven with the rights of all education professionals to be treated with equality and fairness. Since we are having to fight so hard for equality and representation in Valdosta City Schools, where we have several Board members who represent minority districts, and a black Chairman, it is impossible for us to believe that becoming even more of a minority in a consolidated system will be beneficial. The struggles have been lengthy, expensive, and emotional, and they continue today.

-Leigh Touchton