Target: Mr. Rick Scott, Governor of the State of Florida
Goal: Demand state agencies step in to correct and aid failing schools.
It’s hardly believable that there is one elementary school in the United States that has an 80 percent failure rate in reading and a 90 percent failure rate in math, but to learn there are five in one county is depressing. All five schools belong to Pinellas County in Florida and all just happen to be lower income areas and attended by mostly minority students. Is this a coincidence? Of course not. The State of Florida must step in to help these schools and the students and parents who desperately need them.
In 2007, the school board of Pinellas County, home to over one hundred thousand students, voted to stop desegregating schools, essentially resegregating them. Since then, five schools that had average test scores and student achievement numbers have taken a nose dive with 95 percent of students failing either reading or math, and many failing both. The schools themselves have been plagued by teacher turnover as stress mounts and inconsistent funding, with some higher income schools getting more money per student.
That these schools are made up for mostly minority students cannot be overstated as this type of treatment and general apathy from the school board seems to have no explanation other than racism. The almost entirely white school board voted against continuing to integrate schools, that decision destroyed the lives of countless minority students and they have done nothing to try to fix their mistakes over the course of nearly a decade.
Something must be done to help these schools before any more damage is done to the communities that their students reside in. Sign here to demand the State of Florida intervene in these schools and punish the Pinellas School Board accordingly.
Dear Governor Scott,
I am writing to you on behalf of thousands of kids and families who are without reliable education and desperately need your help to have any shot at a future. They are students at five mostly minority schools in Pinellas County and they have been absolutely abandoned by the school board.
After efforts to desegregate the county’s schools were voted down by the mostly white school board, five in particular took an absolute nosedive and have not recovered since. At least 95 percent of the students at these schools are failing either reading or math and many of them are failing both. How this is possible in United States in 2015 is beyond comprehension and the school board has done nothing to correct it for nearly a decade.
I am writing to beg you and the State Education Office to intervene in these five schools and try to save the futures of these young people before it’s too late. I understand that this might be expensive, but not educating them will be far, far more expensive down the road. As one concerned father put it, “When education fails kids, the criminal justice system wins.”
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Wdzinc