School board in retreat | Arkansas Blog

Saturday, December 9, 2006

School board in retreat

Posted By on Sat, Dec 9, 2006 at 12:57 PM

I can't make the LR School Board retreat today and my repeated efforts to get copies of data to be filed for consideration there have failed. Should anybody drop by this evening who was there, I'd appreciate  a report.

It promised to be an informative session on the state of things with the fractured board. Among the topics: race relations, the administration's reorganization, attorney fees, use of federal money for NCLB, and more. Much of the agenda was orchestrated by the new board majority. Something tells me this won't be the meeting where a peacemaker emerges to guide the opposite factions to less finger-pointing and consensus. Hope I'm wrong.

UPDATE: A telephone report from Board member Melanie Fox was encouraging. She said it was a "good meeting" with useful discussions on a number of points. As the meeting was breaking up, civil rights lawyer John Walker arrived and offered criticism of white board members' and criticized all who favor an end to desegregation litigation, in part because it could mean the end of additional state payments to the district. Same song, umpteenth verse. For public relations value alone, an end to the court case is a good thing. I suspect Walker overestimates the loss of state money that an end to the case would entail. The magnet school support, a significant part of the continuing payments, likely would continue. The state's extrication from legal fees and fighting might also contribute to some other forbearance.


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