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Concerned parents address Houston County School Board

School is scheduled to begin August 6 and students have the option of going virtual or returning to the classroom

HOUSTON COUNTY, Ga. — Tensions were high during Tuesday's Houston County School Board meeting.

Parents filled the room to share their concerns with the board about the upcoming school year.

"A number of parents are here to speak. We demand to be heard. We pay your salary. We elect you. You work for us," parent Marie Winter said.

School is scheduled to begin August 6 and students have the option of online classes or returning to the classroom.

Dr. Jason Hatcher stepped up to the microphone to say that we are still in the middle of a public health emergency and schools should not be reopening. 

"As we consider reopening schools, we have to consider the effect on teachers, their families and the community," Hatcher said.

Reggie Camp says it's not right that distance learners cannot participate in extracurricular activities.

"I'm more concerned about the quality of education, which is why I'm putting my kids in the virtual learning program, and they should still have access to extracurricular activities," Camp said.

One concerned parent says she was not allowed to speak at the meeting, and she wants to know why.

"Members of the board, I would like to know why he was allowed to talk and I wasn't. I was on the the list and I was not allowed to talk over the same information," Caly Hess said.

Houston County Schools spokeswoman Beth McLaughlin explained why.

"Our understanding is that she had chosen to not address the board after all, so she was not placed on the agenda. When she talked with our School Operations Department, the understanding was that she planned to attend the meeting, but had decided to not speak," McLaughlin said in an email.


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