Parents will have an opportunity to share their opinions on school uniforms at a 6 p.m. public forum Thursday at the Greensboro Center.
In January, the school board voted 3-2 to require all students to wear uniforms and charged school district administration with writing the policy and guidelines. At their next board meeting which was held last week, the school board voted, again 3-2, to table the policy until they heard from parents.
To date, Pickett Wilson and Eddie Myles have voted for uniforms and against tabling the issue. Bill Weeks and Keith Coble have voted against uniforms and for tabling the policy. Board president Walter Taylor cast the deciding vote both times.
The issue has raised quite a stir in the community, with the most vocal and organized lined up against uniforms.
Thursday”s forum will be held in the Greensboro Center Auditorium. Superintendent Judy Couey will open the forum with a brief presentation on the administration”s decision regarding uniforms. The rules outlined for public participation are that those wishing to speak must sign in and indicate whether they plan to speak for or against uniforms.
The public”s remarks will be limited to three minutes each. Rex Buffington, executive director of the Stennis Institute for Public Service, will moderate the forum.
“As the moderator, Rex will help us facilitate the forum to hear from as many who would like to speak as possible, but there is a two-hour limit for the length of the forum,” said Nicole Thomas, public information officer for the Starkville School District.
Thomas said the school board and administration would like to hear from both sides.
“The goal of the forum is to provide an opportunity for participants to express their views, become better informed and gain understanding of the views of others,” Thomas said. “The goal is also to provide board members with additional information as they decide on the policy.”
The Dispatch Editorial Board is made up of publisher Peter Imes, columnist Slim Smith, managing editor Zack Plair and senior newsroom staff.
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