Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Diversity Policy Voted
Down In Tense Meeting

by T. Keung Hui and Thomas Goldsmith - March 3rd, 2010 - News & Observer

In a chaotic and conflict-filled meeting, Wake County's school board voted Tuesday night to kill the district's long-standing diversity policy and begin implementing neighborhood schools.

By a 5-4 vote, the board gave the first of two approvals needed to pass a resolution calling for abandoning busing for diversity, a policy that has won Wake national recognition and has been an important factor in student assignments for decades. The resolution calls for assigning students to schools in their communities.

The vote, which signals fundamental change for the state's largest district, came at the end of a day of tense, emotional meetings.
The sessions started at 10 a.m. and included grim budget news from Superintendent Del Burns. There was a closed-door session to decide whether Burns, a strong supporter of the diversity policy, would be fired before he retires June 30. And as afternoon stretched toward evening, there were hours of public comment, including a near-violent disturbance over a speaker's accusations of racism.

Supporters of the board's ruling coalition hailed the diversity vote as a step toward providing families more stability. But critics complained the measure would lead to resegregation and deepen the academic divide between impoverished and affluent schools. In a spirited impromptu demonstration after the vote, they vowed to keep fighting and echoed the civil rights protesters of the 1960s.

"Don't get discouraged!" said the Rev. William Barber, president of the state NAACP, who has threatened to sue the board if policies result in resegregation. "Get your head up! We've got some courts we may need to get into."

Supporters of the board majority said attempts to cast the resolution in the light of civil rights were wrong.

"It's insulting to all the people who actually lived in the horrendous segregated schools to compare that to letting people simply stay in neighborhood schools," said Dallas Woodhouse, state director of Americans for Prosperity, a conservative group.

Everything in the World of Barack Obama is race based, at least according to the NAACP. The professional race baiters are out in force. Far from being the uniter that Obama promised he would be, he stirs racial animus at almost every opportunity. Whites assumed the election of a black President indicated race no longer matters and we were closer to the dream of Martin Luther King. Blacks have taken the election of Obama as a sign that it is their turn on top in a nation where 13% of the population will dictate to whites all decisions of government.

Of course this attempt to end the stupidity of busing to overcome racism from 50 years ago will be contested by the race baiters. Their jobs depend on it.


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