At a press conference hosted by the Campaign for Racial Equity in our Schools Wednesday, community members addressed the racial inequalities present in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro School System.
The press conference started with the release of 85 black balloons to represent the 85 percent of black eighth grade males that failed the End of Grade reading examination.
Mary Carey, a volunteer with Bootstraps PAC, a Triangle political action committee focused on literacy in the area, expressed her resentment as both a member of the organization, and also as a parent of a student of color.
“We know that 85 percent of our black eighth grade males were sent to high school not knowing how to read on an eighth grade reading level,” Carey said. “They’re in high school now. They can’t access their curriculum. They can’t participate in their education. They’re not being offered help – we send them anyways.”
Carey said she had to take her child out of the public school system because her child was not at the adequate reading level. She then put her child in a private school.
Brandi Hunter, a parent, expressed similar sentiments.
“In August, I called the school to ask why I had not received my son’s new schedule," she said. "That is when I found out that they withdrew my son without my consent.”
Hunter said she asked the counselor the reason for this; she said the counselor told Hunter that her son had been walking around telling students he was leaving.
"They withdrew my son without even contacting me," she said. "And what’s more disturbing is that same counselor I spoke to was the one who did it.”