School Board Isn’t listening

Published 6:07 pm Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Editor, The Smithfield Times:

When our elected officials fail to represent our concerns, what is our redress?

Members of the Isle of Wight School Board have flagrantly and without shame thumbed their noses at the growing number of parents and grandparents in the community concerned about the state of education in the county. American Marxists’ “Critical Race Theory” is indeed embedded in our schools. Dangerous, divisive and “soul destroying” for our children, our community and our nation, CRT must be dealt with swiftly. Our School Board has lied about its existence even in the face of mounting evidence.

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Several weeks ago, I attended a School Board meeting. I intended to add my voice to those speaking out against CRT and mask mandates. My planned comments, however, were derailed by the board’s suppression of our freedom of speech. Chairman Jackie Carr and Denise Tynes worked in concert with the entire board to reduce speaking times from 5 minutes to 1 minute.

The board’s flagrant disregard of community members who put them in office was shocking. I changed my game plan, albeit not very gracefully, and instead read to them from my pocket Constitution words from the Declaration of Independence: “Governments are instituted among men deriving their just powers from the ‘consent of the governed.’”

To limit public comments on any topic, let alone a topic as serious as CRT, is atrocious and anti-American. To add salt to an already festering wound, as the meeting continued, Chairman Carr and Superintendent Jim Thornton never once considered limiting their speaking time in order to defer to members of the community who had such obvious concerns.

We have huge issues facing our schools and the community at large. CRT, rising crime, violence in our schools and the “Read Woke Challenge” all need to be addressed immediately, but we have a problem in that our elected officials apparently have no regard for those who’ve put them in office.

I urge every citizen of Isle of Wight County to become involved. Get engaged before it’s too late. We must change the current dangerous direction of our schools. We do not allow evil into our homes and should act as protectively to not allow evil into our schools!

The time is now. Take a stand for our children and our community. Demand better from our elected officials and vote out those who don’t respond to our concerns!


Laura Fletcher