Say Yes to Education issues

For starters—in what is commonly known as a “Friday afternoon news dump”—-Say Yes to Education Guilford announced the resignation of its executive director. Mary Vigue–former assistant Greensboro city manger, had been on the job just over a year. Her replacement is Nadia Del Valle, national program director for Say Yes to Education, who will serve on an interim basis.

Meanwhile—at last night’s meeting— the Guilford County Board of Education had some questions regarding the rollout of “data” related to the first round of scholarships. to be fair, the majority of board members—notably former Greensboro City Council member Dianne Bellamy-Small–came on in December following the 2016 election. But longtime board member Deena Hayes-Greene—who sees a racial component in pretty much every aspect of life—had a few questions:

Board member Deena Hayes-Greene questioned why Say Yes has not released data on the first round of scholarships. Del Valle said they are working to incorporate information about students receiving scholarships this second semester and information filtered through the National Student Clearinghouse. Hayes-Greene said she understood those points, but thought they could have released data on just the first semester. She thought they could do more to at least post publicly why data hasn’t been released and when it will.

At separate events and in conversations with the News & Record over the last several months, local Say Yes staff have repeatedly pushed back estimates of when they could have data ready to share.

Hayes-Greene also said she was concerned that the presentation focused on finding ways to help individual students be successful, rather than focusing on systemic issues causing students to be at-risk.

She likened it to trying to treat individual fish in a lake where many fish are floating to the surface, rather than delving into the quality of the lake. Del Valle said Say Yes’ operating committee is looking at systemic issues, but that her presentation to the board was more narrowly focused on the post-secondary planning system the organization is preparing with the 12 schools.

Of course “systemic” is one of those words liberals like to use to blame—you guessed it—the “system” in order to take the focus off individual responsibility. Let’s be real— when Say Yes Guilford was launched it was portrayed in the local mainstream media as a win-win, too good to be true situation. and you know what they say when something’s too good to be true…..

Sam Hieb / Contributing Editor

Sam Hieb is freelance journalist from Greensboro, North Carolina. He is a contributing editor for Carolina Journal and for Piedmont Publius, a blog that focuses on political a...

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