“It does not escape me the amount of money that the city of Asheville funnels into the tourism industry here in Asheville, yet we do not have the money or funding to make the communities where these children live safe or enriching.”
Interim Asheville City Schools Superintendent Bobbie Short is taking over — for the third time in six years — as the district struggles with extreme disparities in the academic performance of its white and black students, which are the largest of any district in the state. The district is once again searching for a permanent leader. In the best-case scenario, a new superintendent will start work in January.
“Hopefully, Mountain Xpress readers will not just see the problem but ask the question, ‘What can I do?’”
“If the district is truly committed to fixing this alarming achievement gap between black and white students, it must work to make specific changes in its own treatment of black students.”
“Certainly teacher bias in disciplinary actions should be mitigated, but I think we all know that the economic and social disparities between white and black families are closer to the root cause of these issues.”
State data show that the gap in academic achievement between white and black students in the Asheville City Schools is the largest in North Carolina. The district is launching a new initiative to address the persistent problem — but only time will tell whether this effort will succeed where so many have failed to show results.