At issue | Sept. 1 Herald-Leader editorial, "A cynical ploy by pandering pair; Williams, Seum attack local control"
The editorial, while admirable, is misguided and wrong on everything.
"Resegregation" is an inflammatory fallacy with no basis or reasoning.
Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS) wastes millions of dollars every year forcing children to be bused hours away to bad schools.
Nearly a billion dollars has been spent since I started with this issue in 1999, and there has been no improvement in education.
Had the Herald-Leader taken time to investigate the matter, it would have learned:
■ This problem started with JCPS denying African-American children a chance to go to a better magnet school that was near their home and one-third empty.
■ Most African-American children were, and still are, being bused to the worst-performing schools. JCPS has maintained an achievement gap of at least 25 percent.
■ For more than 11 years, African-American students have been four class grades behind their white counterparts.
■ Only 14 percent of the African-American children who graduate from JCPS graduate from four-year colleges.
■ More African-American students drop out each year, or are incarcerated, than graduate from four-year colleges.
■ Each year, JCPS spends $70 million to $90 million of taxpayers' money just to bus children around the city. Most are elementary schoolchildren spending over three hours every day on a bus.
This year, JCPS "lost" over 400 children on the first day of school, with many not getting home until well after 9 p.m.
■ JCPS just increased the tax rate again to the maximum available, without any transparency or government oversight. Teachers are paid a pittance while the top management enjoys inflated salaries and benefits.
■ There has never been any accountability or transparency in any JCPS spending or on its $900-million yearly budget. This is an agency with no oversight that is allowed to splurge freely without any guidelines.
The bill by Sens. David Williams and Dan Seum, which guarantees students the right to attend neighborhood schools, simply clarifies the legislative intent of an already existing Kentucky law.
If the Herald-Leader wanted to take a stand for better education, then please champion:
■ Smaller class sizes.
■ More experienced teachers in the higher concentrations of poverty, by offering them incentive pay.
■ Equality of materials, supplies and modern technology for all students, regardless of the school in which they are enrolled.
The Herald-Leader is too good a paper to pick up false rhetoric to spread incendiary lies and mislead readers.