EASLEY — As the controversy over the re-accreditation of the School District of Pickens County continues, one group of retired district employees has penned a letter voicing their frustrations.
The group, comprised of retired teachers, administrators and principals, originally read the letter at a school board meeting in February and has since distributed its contents to the media. The focus of the letter is geared toward the board’s actions in light of hurdles related to re-accreditation and the board’s governance.
“The decision to write the letter came out of informal discussions with one another, not all, but as many as we could get,” Betty Garrison, retired Easley High school principal, said of the retirees’ initiative. “There were others who chose not to sign for whatever reason, but it’s about how important this is for the students. We want to continue to show our support with pride for our faculty and staff.”
The group isn’t looking to create more controversy but is looking to create a unified board and school district.
“We’d like to see harmony with forward-thinking leaders who are on board with the district’s goals,” Garrison said. “We’d like for the parents and students to be reassured as far as the consultant is concerned with the board and its requirements for re-accreditation.”
AdvancEd, the organization responsible for the re-accreditation and evaluation of school districts throughout the state, originally cited the board’s actions as an impediment to receiving the crucial accreditation for the district.
April 1 marks the date of a special election to fill the vacated seat of Ben Trotter following his resignation and Garrison sees this as an important opportunity.
“Every elected seat is important and we hope the voters stand and speak out to what board they want,” she explained. “We hope the voters cast their votes to elect people who will lead our district and understand what its limitations and roles are as a board.”