October 19, 2005
A group of 15 parents, teachers and community members gathered at Clark Elementary School to help develop the future plan for Charlottesville City Schools. One method of designing the future required them to examine the existing problems.
"Communication and curriculum planning really needs to be adjusted in a line," said one concerned parent.
One problem area the group discussed was the achievement gap based on racial and socioeconomic factors.
"I'm more concerned about those black parents and those poorer working class parents who have kids that are just as smart as me but do not have the access to the system and do not feel empowered to do anything," said Lisa Woolfork.
The lack of sturdy leadership was also a concern.
"You can only look to the last leadership to see, you have a lot of issues that are really challenging the community," said Tierney Fairchild.
While a large focus concerned the negative, people also recognized some things are going right even under some tough conditions.
"I think the educators have shown a devotion that is beyond measure," said Wayne Gary.
All of this information is designed to move the school system forward with a clear vision.
"The ultimate goal of a strategic plan is to give the school system a focus," said Dr. JoAnne Cox of the consulting firm MGT of America.
This was the sixth of seven forums to be held dealing with the strategic plan. The final one will be October 25th from 7 to 9 p.m. at Mount Zion First African Baptist Church.
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