As if our city needed one more example of citizen voices being sidelined, on Aug. 24, Asheville City Council pushed through the nomination of George Sieburg for the Asheville City Board of Education just hours after the vacancy was known to anyone.
The decision was not on the agenda for the Aug. 24 meeting. No public comment was taken on the issue. Not a single parent or teacher was aware that a decision was to be made that evening.
Nonetheless, cavalier and confident, six City Council members decided that it was entirely fine to ignore the voices of Asheville City Schools parents, the endorsements of the Asheville City Association of Educators and the Buncombe County Association of Educators and countless parents who count on committed and regular attendees of board meetings to keep us informed. Voting 6-1, with the lone and principled “no” vote of Kim Roney, City Council pushed through the nomination in a flash.
For any parent following the misadventures of a district already mired in academic struggles, financial disarray and a tattered relationship between an unpopular superintendent and parents, this process was salt in a festered wound.
Kudos to Council member Kim Roney for being ever open and transparent and for consistently listening to the voices and concerns of ACS parents and teachers. Alas, an elected school board cannot come soon enough.
— Brooke Heaton