In a week that saw some of our selfish NCGA members use a Day of Remembrance to ram through a veto override vote three months after it was issued in an extended session that has cost taxpayers millions to keep convening, it is probably not a good time to send an email like the one Mark Johnson sent today.
Not because of what the good people at Butler High School are doing for their community to heal from last year’s shooting.
But because so much could have been done not only for them last year, but for other students, schools, and communities in the months after.
This teacher cannot help but think that an email launching an initiative that already has been started by people at this school months ago is an attempt by Johnson to divert attention from issues that have negatively impacted his reputation.
And it’s hard not to remember that the state did not help Butler High as much as it should have last year in the wake of that shooting.
From Fox46 out of Charlotte in May of 2019:
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – Butler High School students will have to make up the day that was missing following a deadly school shooting.
A message reportedly sent to families from Principal John LeGrand that was obtained by FOX 46 Charlotte, says the school is required by law to have students make up the day.
The principal reportedly said school officials explored options which included seeking a special waiver from the NC legislature, adding 15 minutes to each day, or having the make-up day. The message says their waiver was turned down by the legislature and the second option would have caused logistical issues such as transportation and meal times.
One of the teachers, Elizabeth Mosley, at that school tweeted out this that same day:
#NCGA doesn’t care about: providing adequate funding for student support services like counselors and nurses & passing common-sense gun legislation that would help reduce gun violence Things they do: punishing a traumatized school family so they can check a box.”
And she’s exactly right.
When checking boxes becomes a priority for lawmakers instead of the mental, physical, and emotional well-being of students in our schools, then we need new lawmakers.
Launching this on a state level is not bad at all. Ten months after the fact and taking credit for it on a state level when it belongs to the Butler High family is.
And the timing of the email – two days after the same NCGA that has been found to be constitutionally gerrymandered and carried out a surreptitious veto-override vote.
The same NCGA that allowed a municipal charter school bill to pass that will affect schools like Butler in Meck. County.
One can hope that Mark Johnson sent the same email to the entire NCGA.
Because they have not been practicing kindness at all.