Thomasville school board hears NAACP concerns

Thomasville school board hears NAACP concerns
Thomasville citizens voiced concerns at Tuesdays board meeting (Source: WALB)
Parents, students, and staff packed the board meeting room (Source: WALB)
Parents, students, and staff packed the board meeting room (Source: WALB)

THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) - Several parents and community leaders in Thomasville are expressing concern tonight about inclusiveness and diversity in the city school system.

NAACP President Lucinda Brown gave a letter to the Thomasville School board Tuesday night referencing issues like segregation in the elementary schools, and the disapproval of the high school principal's termination.

The letter mentions that the organization would like a response within 15 days.

High school students, parents, teachers, and community leaders packed the boardroom for Thomasville City Schools, hoping to have their voices heard.

"We are set up as if we were back in the 60's. Thomasville city schools integrated in 1970 in case you didn't know that," said Brown.

Harper, Jerger, and Scott schools have pre-k programs at the school.

This year, 114 students registered for pre-k, every student got their first choice in school, and 96 students were placed at Jerger for the upcoming year.

"We are very lucky that there are that many people in our community that care deeply about our students and care about their education. That is encouraging. I think we can all do some problem solving," said Dr. Laine Reichert, Superintendent.

A lot of changes have happened within the school system in the past two weeks, prompting the packed board room Tuesday night.

The board did not recommend the contract of high school principal Chip Clatto.

The scholar's academy director Dr. Dale Graham has resigned as the Scholars Academy Director, and MacIntyre Park principal Tina McBride will become the new director of student services.

Dr. Reichert said the end goal for leadership in the schools is to find people who want to work together in those three positions to create unity in the school system as a whole.

"It has created a perfect storm to create synergy. To put three leaders in place that can coordinate, work together, come up with a common educational program," said Reichert.

Many who attended the meeting Tuesday night said they just hope to see a positive change to make opportunities available to all students.

"If a kid is not being able to get an equal opportunity to learn, it's your fault, it's your responsibility, you are responsible for that," said Stephan Thompson, parent.

Another issue discussed in the letter is having the scholars academy and high school campuses separated.

The letter mentions that it makes certain students superior to others.

City School leaders said next year AP and high-level classes will be offered to high school students who are not a part of the scholar's academy.

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