Local/State

Tata challenges Clinton to visit Wake Schools

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Wake County Schools Superintendent Tony Tata has issued a challenge to former president Bill Clinton.

Tata invited Mr. Clinton to visit the Triangle to see how great schools are in the Wake County Public School System.

The invitation follow’s Clinton’s recent comments against the community schools plan. When he honored the Little Rock Nine last weekend, Clinton complimented Wake Schools in calling the district one of the largest, most successful urban school districts in America. But then he chided the school board majority, saying the district seems to have decided to “let these kids go to school with more of their own kind.”

One member of the Little Rock Nine was in Raleigh at NC State Thursday night, speaking to a crowd about the controversy.

“I think that’s probably one of the most tragic thoughts and ideas for me, said Dr. Minnijean Brown Trickey. “It’s as if we don’t want to have desegregation.”

Trickey delivered a series of lectures on integration, and on the trials she experienced first-hand while attending an all-white school in 1957.

“There were 200 years of training to see blacks as ineligible, inferior, incapable… so they were behaving as they had been taught,” Trickey said.

Clinton’s remark is just one of many recent shots at the school board high places. Last month, comedian Stephen Colbert poked fun at the community schools plan on his Comedy Central show. U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan called the plan troubling.

“I don’t think it’s real useful for a leader of our country to be throwing 143,000 students under the bus,” Tata said of Clinton’s remarks. “I invite President Clinton and Secretary Duncan and Stephen Colbert, and I’ll talk to them and show them how great this school system is.”

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wake county schools, local/state, fred shropshire
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