Here are some questions that you should be asking yourself about the recent decision to place Cass High School behind White Elementary school.
1) It has been said by some members of the board and Dr. Boring that 50 school sites were investigated. If I look at 900 houses online and visit 3 …..How many did I actually investigate? To say that we looked at 50 school sites is a gross over-exaggeration!
2) On every other piece of property that we seriously looked at we did all of the due diligence work before making a decision to purchase the property. This process took months in some cases and was a process / precedent established by Dr. Boring early at the beginning of our search for land. Why after a year of using this process would we throw it out the window to push this Cass-White property through in a little over 30 days. Something is not right about any of this. We violated our own year long precedent in how we moved forward with this property! (Why?)
3) I just want to clarify one point here…..If this school had been placed on the West side of I-75 where the data said it should be then I would have been quiet about this issue even if the site was one that I was not in favor of. There is something going on with this whole process that goes beyond the facts that we had available to us.
4) There has been some suggestion that I should be quiet on this issue because the board has decided the fate of Cass High School. Is that what you really elect people to do? Do you really want your elected representative to just lie down and not speak about issues even when they know that they are wrong? The only people who benefit from my silence is Dr. Boring, Lamar Grizzle, Roger Maier, Tammy Livingood and Greg Bowen(he is with me in spirit–He just voted wrong). They do not want you to have all of the facts and want me to just go away quietly. Is that the way you want your government to operate?
5) Interchange village is in the Cartersville School district….Would they have ever accepted Cartersville High school at exit 293? Why is this ok for Cass?
Please read this great article on church and school partnerships!
Read Michael’s letter to the newspaper!
Click here to read Mark Garland’s letter to the Daily Tribune.
If the $4,536,000 was your money would you spend it this way?
The Red line is the entrance to White Elementary School and the only access to this landlocked piece of property
The Blue line is Cass-White Road
The part of this property that is labeled as “Unused” totals around 68 acres and cost about 1.8 million dollars.(That would have purchased 2 Elementary School sites that will be needed within the next 5 years) This part of the property could go unused for 10 years and maybe longer as a result of the current Cass High conversion to a middle school upon completion of the new Cass.
Let your voice be heard! Please click on the link below and vote in the online poll about the boards decision to place Cass High school behind White Elementary.
Update: Voting more than once only keeps the true feelings of the community from being heard!
Cass High Poll
The Red Line is Interstate I-75
The area between the dark black lines is the Cass High District
The yellow dots with numbers on them are the # of students in that area
The green Square is the location of the New Cass High School
To the people of Bartow County:
I believe that I have a duty to explain in the most sincere way possible my belief that a majority of this board has made a critical mistake in choosing where to locate Cass High School. As a board we have been presented with demographic, planning commission, and growth projection data that all lead to the conclusion that this school should be located on the West side of I-75 in the neighborhood of Hwy. 411. As a result of this process dragging on for months, we have been left with doing what is expedient instead of doing what is right. We have come to the point in this choice where counting to three becomes the most important factor while we try and play nice for the benefit of the public and maintain our 2010 completion timeline.
With tonight’s vote to place Cass High school behind White Elementary, the majority of this board have completely ignored all of this information and made a choice that clearly goes against the facts as they were presented to us. Of the final sites that were examined, the one they approved is the most expensive in terms of actual acquisition and development costs. This action will also make it more difficult to plan for and manage the growth that we are experiencing in Bartow County, as we look towards the need for a fourth high school. This decision will also create a ripple of change that will lead to the most extensive redistricting in this county in years, as we get closer to the opening of this school. All of these things could have been mitigated by placing this high school in the area were the majority of the students reside. Instead, politics prevailed and we will have to settle for a great high school built in absolutely the wrong location. This decision is going to place our driving high school students at risk as the have to travel one of the worst roads in this county.
I will not dwell on this poor decision, and as always, I will to continue to fight for what I know to be in the best interest of the school system. I will now focus on making sure that the school we build is one that we can all be proud of and that it meets the needs of our students for many years to come.
As always, I ask for your continued prayers and support as I move forward in service to the students of Bartow County!
In the most recent board agenda that has been released to the public Superintendent Abbe Boring has proposed a policy that would prohibit all school system facilities from being used for multi-day or long term use.
Here is a link to the board agenda and the policy can be read on pages 19-23.
In this policy the Superintendent actually strikes out the language that the board encourages public use of the facilities. The real question that needs to be answered is who owns these buildings? In drafting this policy Dr. Boring has subscribed to the liberal view that these buildings are owned by the “board” and that they should be for the exclusive use of students or student related groups. I believe that these buildings are “owned” by the people of this community and that it is the job of the board to manage these assets for our citizens.
This proposal is a direct attack on the community, civic, educational and religious groups who use these facilities for the enrichment of our students, employees, and citizens. This policy is clearly out of touch with both the values and the will of the people of Bartow County. We cannot ask our citizens to support us with their tax dollars only to tell them that they have no access to these facilities after the final school bell rings.
A careful review of the history of this country will show that schools have always served as mixed use facilities. From the inception of public education school buildings served as churches, city halls, community gathering spots, and of course institutions of learning. It is only recently that revisionist judges have interpreted the Constitution to mean that outside groups should have limited access to school facilities.
We as a community cannot allow the values and traditions of this county to be attacked by those who fear lawsuits or complications that may never arise. Real leadership means never allowing the potential exception to drive the entire decision making process. Those in favor of this policy will try and take cover under the umbrella of the law. The truth is that the courts are all over the spectrum on this issue. School systems all around Bartow County allow these types of use as a matter of routine course. It is these types of bureaucratic fear-mongering decisions that have devastated the reputation of public education in this country. This policy is wrong for our children, employees, citizens and moves past protecting our facilities and towards hurting the people of this community.
I encourage the citizens of Bartow County to contact the other members of the school board and the superintendent and ask them to reject this policy. I will fight as hard as a I can to preserve our schools as community buildings that serve as educational tools to both children and adults. I need your help! Here is a link to the email addresses of the other board members.