Source: Sherman Publications

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Public: ‘Stop schools of choice’

April 13, 2011

Dear Editor,

Apathy: lack of feeling or emotion. I am wondering if the Brandon school district is taking advantage of the community's apathy. We have 12,000 registered voters in the Brandon school district. Not one resident (except employees) agrees with schools of choice.

It is very confusing to me as to how we (the community) are being thrown away like leftover lunch. I have been a member of the BGO community for 13 years. I have never seen this much public interest in any issue. The public has spoken loudly in favor of discontinuing or limiting schools of choice. We have taken time away from our own responsibilities to attend meetings and voice our feelings. We have shown up in numbers to which the school board has never seen.

What does the school board do? They put us of into a cooling-off period of 6 months. They are refusing to address the issue now. You may ask why. It is simple, the enrollment for school of choice student is taking place now. At this time Brandon High School has 20 percent school of choice students. We all know that this number will continue to climb until our own children will not be the majority, but the minority in their own school. Please understand one important thing. Schools of choice is a local school board policy and can be discontinued and or limited at any time. Brandon is the only district that does not have clear limitations on enrollment. As we continue to loose actual BGO residents the percentage of schools of choice students will climb.

You may believe there is nothing that can be done. You may also believe that it is not your concern. You may also believe that raising your children is done and over. For whatever you believe, I say to you: I do not attend the Brandon school district either. Why is it that those of us are against school of choice? Community: a social group of any size whose members reside in a specific locality, share government, and often have a common cultural and historical heritage.

We need community support to get rid of school of choice or limit it to reflect the community's best interest. We need this to happen or we the "community" need new representatives to reflect the public's best interests and demands.

Please voice your opinion (brandonschoolofchoice.com) and show up at school board meetings.

Brian Cummings