The September 11, 2017 School Board Meeting was held amidst the residual winds and rains of Hurricane Irma that swept to the West of us at the last few hours and mostly missed Cleveland County. Hurricane Irma was the largest and most ferocious Atlantic Ocean Hurricane in the history of the known world. In many respects Hurricane Irma didn’t hold a candle to the election year storm that has hit the terrified School Board members with the truth. The truth that they have covered up for so long that has now exploded in their faces.
If that sounded like a strange introduction to this article an even stranger event is how some school board members and candidates, especially Kathy Falls, are now introducing their campaign lies into school board meetings and how the CCS administration is trying to help them. I suppose the CCS administration is also trying to help themselves while they are at it. I also started this article out like I did because Hurricane Irma caused the opening items on the agenda involving students and guest recognition to be cancelled due to the inclement weather. As for myself, I didn’t show up either. I watched the meeting on the official school website and, after you read the rest of this article, watch that video for yourself. I am sure you will come to the same conclusions that I did.
Let’s start describing what all this means by giving you notice that this article will not stick with the School Board Meeting Agenda as it was laid out, but by how the cover-up flows. We have captured certain video clips of the September 11, 2017 school board meeting to prove our point. You are certainly welcome to go on the CCS Website and watch the blow by blow recording of this meeting. We are also provided some educational related “talking points” and the truth of the matter as shown below.
Facts of the matter:
1. The North Carolina General Assembly has provided increased funding to schools every year since the Republicans have come into the majority power in Raleigh.
2. The NC General Assembly has also taken a stronger hand in mandating school curricula and budgetary spending such that there is an increase in educational opportunities for students as well as accountability standards for every school. The politically structured “Common Core” standards once heartily embraced by the Cleveland County School Board (as late as last year) have been discontinued by order of the NC General Assembly.
3. The NC General Assembly has also allowed local school boards flexibility to move budget items around so that more funds can be made available to better fund certain items that work well for the schools and education, but that funding will have to come out of other items that have proved themselves to be wasteful or ineffective.
4. We will also mention that the Cleveland County Commissioners, since school merger have decreased overall funding to schools by adopting a per student funding method that accounts for the full 15 cent per $100 tax evaluation revenue and then adjusting down the original county funding portion of the total funding to schools to match the per student funding formula. This is a very sneaky way for the county commissioners to steal tax money from educating our children and then give it away for so called economic development “tools” (rhymes with “fools”) like the ALWS world series, the Earl Scruggs Center, the LeGrand Center, the Shooting Range and other such projects that do not and will never operate without significant $millions in Taxpayer subsidy every year.
5. School Board Member Danny Blanton has brought up many common sense approaches to the goings on at CCS over the past four years. The rest of the School Board members, and especially Board Chairman Phillip “Bully” Glover have ignored, tried to shut down and have basically refused to let any substantial item that Danny Blanton brings up be seriously discussed and voted upon. Superintendents Bruce Boyles as well as Stephen Fisher have aided and abetted with the other board members in an effort to shut-up and shut-down Danny Blanton. But Blanton has adapted and now asks his common sense questions in what I have previously called a “Gomer Pyle” style that has rocked the world at CCS Board meetings. But you must have attended or watched the video of CCS Board meetings to get the full effect and impact of Blanton’s influence on the CCS Board and how the truth is now coming out as never before.
6. CCS and Cleveland Community College have deceptively teamed up to eliminate vocational training such as welding, machining, shop, carpentry, wood working, agriculture, etc. in such a way that those courses, with a few more thrown in, will be taught at CCC instead of at High Schools. The “stated” purpose being it costs too much to buy the vocational equipment for each high schools to teach such courses on CCS premises. Logic dictates the real purpose is to deceivingly draw in high school students into the now scandalous “dual enrollment programs” pushed by both CCS and CCC to “suck up” (divert) funding provided by the NC General Assembly for better educating vocational students for use for improper purposes by CCS and CCC. (A new School Board majority would insist on better accountability of these funds. Starting with CCS as the CCC Board of Trustees are presently in gridlock and denial.) Historically, as I am a witness, vocational courses taught in high school have provided a very valuable lifetime understanding of how things work and how to fix things when they break down. Such training is invaluable in helping vocational students find jobs in a 21st Century environment as no matter how good office jobs are, things break down mechanically and have to be fixed by someone who knows what they are doing.
7. Cursive writing. Reports from businesses, employers, parents, bank tellers, retail stores, etc. indicate that CCS has graduated many thousands of students over the years who cannot read or write cursive writings. These high school graduates, when they get their paychecks (if they can find a job) cannot sign their paychecks with a signature. They cannot read letters, instructions, or even Historic Documents like the Declaration of Independence because they are written in cursive. This has become a campaign issue as some candidates like Kathy Falls are taking up for CCS for not properly preparing students for a career after High School.