Parents, students and teachers of Central Elementary School in Waynesville made a desperate and impassioned final stand to save their beloved school last week, but to no avail.
Half a year after launching a program that makes breakfast and lunch free for every child in school, the financials are looking good for Jackson County Schools’ child nutrition program.
Haywood County commissioners deflected calls from the public this week that they should step in and help the school system out of its budget dilemma.
It’s a fundamental question and voters will be the ultimate arbiters: is North Carolina spending adequately on education? The short answer is no, and I’ll show you why I believe that.
With Haywood County officials pondering the likely closing of Central Elementary School due to funding shortfalls, the question of the state’s commitment to education has been thrust into the spotlight. The back-and-forth has included emails and press releases from both Haywood school officials and Rep. Michelle Presnell, R-Burnsville, with our legislator stooping so far as to calling local officials “shameful” and “disingenuous.” Not quite the behavior you’d expect from a state representative, but hey, an uninformed electorate gets its just deserts.
Haywood School leaders have avoided talking about what would become of the 1950s-era school building that houses Central Elementary if it closes, saying it would be premature until a final decision is made.
Around 300 supporters of Central Elementary School in Waynesville packed into the school cafeteria Wednesday evening and made a heart-wrenching appeal to the Haywood County School Board not to close the school.
Dozens of children, parents and teachers spoke during the emotional public hearing.
By Jimmy Rogers • Guest Columnist
If Central Elementary in Waynesville is forced to close because of budget cuts and losing enrollment to charter schools, Haywood County will know who to thank — politicians like Rep. Michele Presnell, R-Burnsville, who have voted time and time again for budgets that shortchange our public schools in order to keep tax breaks for folks at the top.
By John Sanderson • Guest Columnist
I have hesitated to make a comment about this issue, because I know personally most of the people who will be involved in making a decision about closing Central Elementary School, and I do not wish to offend or unfairly criticize any of those who bear the heavy burden of making a decision in this matter. But I was the principal at Central Elementary School for 17 genuinely wonderful years until I retired in 2008, and I have an emotional connection to this school and the families Central has served so well for so many years. I do feel a need, therefore, to offer a few thoughts about the possible closing of Central Elementary.
Many of the speakers at a public hearing on whether to close Central Elementary School in Waynesville urged Haywood County School board members to think outside the box and find another way to solve the budget shortfall.
Central Elementary School has become a rallying cry for advocates of public education across the state.