On Monday night, April 1, 2008.
The occasion was a parents' meeting to determine what is to be done with two elementary schools that have been determined by the State of Alabama to be substandard. My ten-year old granddaughter attends one of those schools.
The superintendent of schools is wanting to close those schools and bus the kids 3-4 miles to a new school that was built in 1999. The enrollment at that school has dropped sharply due to the razing of a housing project nearby. He was at the meeting to assure us that it is a cost-saving measure and that he feels his solution is best.
Well, some parents and grandparents goaded on by some teachers, gave the supt a hard time. They accused him of conspiring to "displace" the children and being insensitive to the needs of the community. They were quite vocal and emotional; one woman broke down and sobbed inconsolably.
I was asked by the TV newswoman if I had any objections to appearing on the local news and airing my views. I replied in the negative. She asked my opionion on the matter. I stated that I had no problem with his proposal as long as the kids continued to receive a quality education.
They're all doing well at their old school, and I believe they'll do even better at the new school because it's so spacious, airy, and well-lit. Well, my statements were taken out of context by some and I've been getting the cold shoulder from the principal and assistant principal. I don't really care about myself - I'm just hoping my granddaughter won't suffer from the backlash.
Isn't it amazing how some will turn on you simply because you dare to have an opinion that goes against the popular view?
I've been reviewing Ben Stein's EXPELLED - NO INTELLIGENCE ALLOWED, and I'm struck by the similarity to my experience.