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NAACP Threatens Toombs BOE
Friday, 15 May 2009

May 15--  The Toombs County chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored Peopled (NAACP) is planning to sue the Toombs County school board.

Michael Dennard of the local NAACP complained to the school board Thursday night about the lack of black and Hispanic teachers in the school system.  He also claimed some minority students were not fairly disciplined at Toombs County High School. 

School Superintendent Dr. Kendall Brantley says the school system attempts to recruit in minority colleges and has for years.  He also reports the school system had 12 teacher vacancies last year and hired five minorities, some of whom have since gone elsewhere for higher pay or other personal reasons.

Dr. Brantley also reacted to concerns by local farmers.  The local Young Farmers Association objected to budget cuts which placed their liaison position at the high school on a part-time basis. The superintendent said his first obligation is to fund core curriculum instruction and other programs have a lower priority for funding.

The farmers wanted more input into the future management of the Toombs County Agri-Center now under construction near the high school. Dr. Brantley invited them to monthly meetings on the project and said he's hopeful the University of Georgia Extension Service may want to play a role in managing the facility.

The school board approved the system's five-year facilities plan which includes construction of a new Toombs County High School and a new elementary school at Toombs Central.  The system's most urgent need is 45 classrooms, according to Dr. Brantley.

He also expresssed concern about next year's school budget and believes upto 45 positions may have to be cut because of reduced local tax revenue and state funding.  Dr. Brantley also warned the school board it may have to borrow money later this year to meet payroll unless the state releases more funds.  He says the system has only received 66% of the money which is due from the state.

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