Save the Elementary Spanish programs in Orange County, NC

Save the Elementary Spanish programs in Orange County, NC

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Amber Bowman started this petition to Orange County Citizens

We need your help!

This Monday, June 8, the Orange County Board of Education is voting on a proposal to terminate Spanish programs in elementary schools as a response to the budget shortfall for the 2020-2021 school year. 

We the parents, students, friends, faculty, and staff of Orange County Public Schools are strongly against the termination of these programs for the following reasons:

On February 25, 2019 The Orange County Board of Education voted unanimously to create a chief equity officer position.  Our community celebrated the development of this position to address equity issues within schools, including the achievement gap and discipline practices.   

Eliminating the Spanish program in our elementary schools will only further increase the achievement gap for our Hispanic students by eliminating Spanish speaking faculty and staff as liaisons for parents and students.  Additionally, the value of these employees to ensure equitable discipline practices and academic achievement for all students is a priority of Orange County and not something to be cut without thought into the long standing ramifications. 

In 2018, New Hope Elementary became the first elementary school in Orange County to offer a dual language immersion program.  There was more interest in the first year such that spots filled quickly and a waiting list had to be established.  Expansion, not suspension, of Spanish language programs should be our goal and the support, interest, and need is still here. 

In other schools where Spanish is a weekly special our students learn the heritage and culture of their classmates and they learn to appreciate and celebrate diversity.

Our country and county is facing a crisis for people of color.  Cutting the Spanish program would indicate that diversity and equity is not important to our citizens and goals.  We have taken small steps forward in the last few years.  We do not wish to take one giant step backward. 

Dismantling the Spanish program will not solve the budget deficit, nor does it put Orange County in the light of a group that supports diversity and the needs of our families.

If you agree, please make your voice heard by signing this petition, sharing with your friends on Facebook, and by emailing and calling our Board of Education.  Time is of the essence and let’s not allow our inability to be together in person allow this measure to be passed without the Board understanding the horrific message this sends the world about OC’s school system and the immeasurable damage this will cause to our Hispanic families.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 5,000!
At 5,000 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!