While I am not a parent, I am one who values public education and recognizes its critical importance in facilitating the lifelong success of individuals. As a resident of Springboro, OH, I have been very disappointed in the actions of the Springboro Board of Education (BOE). Particular members of the BOE have voted for and/or promoted policies that are grossly detrimental to the community. These include, but are not limited to, wasteful spending, unfair labor practices, and unconstitutional instruction. Along with many other community members, I have shared my concerns at the BOE meetings. Unfortunately, it appears that the majority community voice falls on deaf ears. Additionally, blatantly erroneous information has been provided by members of the BOE in their attempts to further their own political agenda. On this blog, I share audio files of my own comments at BOE meetings. Furthermore, I provide accurate information regarding some of the key issues of discussion. I would like to thank my good friend and fellow Springboro resident, Tracey Kramer, for bringing the Springboro BOE's actions to my attention!

*Note: While I refer to the BOE as one entity, please recognize that not every member engages in such tactics.

Contact: patelnhpblog@gmail.com

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Public Schools: Separation of Church and State!

Earlier this summer, the BOE invited the Institute on the Constitution (IOTC) to Springboro. The purpose was to provide the community an opportunity to experience the series of classes the BOE hoped to implement as part of the high school curriculum.

The Common Misconception: Much as been made that the IOTC has a right, like any other group, to provide information to a community. With that, I do not disagree. It has been noted that the IOTC should be allowed to 'rent' public spaces as in accordance with the policies of the district. With that, I do not inherently disagree.

What much of the community finds contemptible is the BOE's efforts to bring the teachings of the IOTC into Springboro classrooms. The IOTC is a religiously-based organization that argues for the Biblical foundation of the US. The IOTC denies the separation of Church and State. This is what outrages many members of the community. Subsequent to the community response, the BOE support IOTC summer class was cancelled. However, 12-week classes are still being offered at a local church.

Link: http://www.theamericanview.com/the-us-constitution/

Merely because the summer courses have been moved, does not mean the fight is over. The BOE has still indicated that it seeks to bring religion into the Springboro public schools. The BOE has not yet voted on the Controversial Issues policy, in which they added creationism to the curriculum as an opposing "theory" to evolution. Furthermore, at the most recent meeting, a BOE member requested the addition of the Liberty Institute (another religiously-based organization) to the agenda. As a community, it is important that we remain diligent in our efforts to ensure that our public schools remain Public schools. Furthermore, we need to ensure that the decisions of the BOE are those that are best for the students in this community, as experience has taught us that this does not consistently occur.

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