Tuesday, April 05, 2016

To Pinellas County School Board: You Must Answer For What You Done Wrong

Per the Tampa Bay Times: The federal government is investigating the Pinellas County School Board for civil rights violations.

The U.S. Department of Education on Monday opened a civil rights investigation into whether the Pinellas County School District systematically discriminates against black children, the agency said.
The review will determine if Pinellas is denying black children access to the courses and special programs they need to be successful in high school and after graduation.
This is specifically focusing on the schools within the mostly black and mostly poor communities within St. Petersburg, which have been documented as literally falling apart over eight years of neglect.

What the hell took the Feds so long?

This was me railing like a madman back in August of last year:

This has been eight years in the making.  That's almost an entire generation's worth of kids getting pushed through broken schools into middle school and high school - if they even try to stay in that long - almost five or six grades behind in key developmental skills.  We're coming up to a graduation cycle where almost none of these kids are going to graduate.  Entire years lost.  Entire communities lost.
What the hell, Pinellas County School Board?  What.  The.  Hell.  When you swore in to office to do your duty, you swore to the whole county to no exclusion of any community.  And yet you've excluded an entire city's worth of children, condemned them, and for what?  Why?
None of you deserve to sit in your comfortable offices in that fancy building in Largo.  None of you.  Every kid should matter more than your job, and you failed those kids as surely as they are failing their standardized tests.  All because you broke your promises and rigged the rules.  And for what?
This was happening in my backyard. My school system, shredding itself because the school board was failing to serve their county's families and fix those schools.

I hope to God the Department of Education finds clear evidence of not only civil rights violations but clear evidence of incompetence, financial fraud, and waste so that we as a community can convict those board members on criminal charges as well as civil. Condemn them to jail as much as those board members have condemned entire families to despair.

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