Tuesday, January 12, 2016

CIVIL RIGHTS ICON TO SPEAK, BUT COST US $13,500

The school district last week announced an upcoming visit from civil rights legend Ruby Bridges on Jan. 21 at Columbia High School.

For those not in the historic know, Bridges made equal rights history when she was the first African-American child to attend an all-white elementary school in Louisiana, escorted by federal marshals in 1960 at age six.
Norman Rockwell's famed painting depicts Ruby Bridges
The moment was a national step forward for civil rights, even prompting Norman Rockwell to record the moment in one of his most important paintings.

But Bridges' visit does not come cheap. She will be paid $15,000 for her appearance at CHS, and about the same for another appearance the next day at Marshall School. She is even aligned with a top speakers' bureau.

Half the cost of her visit to Maplewood/South Orange will be split between the Parenting Center and several PTA's, with the rest, about $13,500, coming from the district budget. 

We are not questioning the expense, but just wanted residents to know what it is costing. The CHS event is open to all residents on a first come, first serve seating basis, while the Marshall School event is for students only.

That cost was approved by the school district back in September as the resolution below states:

SCHOOL DISTRICT OF SOUTH ORANGE AND MAPLEWOOD, NEW JERSEY PUBLIC BOARD MEETING


September 21, 2015

                                                                                                           


RESOLUTION          3332J

FOR ACTION
SUBJECT:     AMEND RESOLUTION 3309AG  TO APPROVE AGREEMENT WITH RUBY BRIDGES FOR AN AUTHOR VISIT AND TWO DAY PRESENTATION AND BOOK SIGNING AT MARSHALL SCHOOL


BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Board of Education amends resolution 3309AG to approve an additional evening engagement with Ruby Bridges of Harvey, Louisiana at an additional cost of $15,000.


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT the Board President, Superintendent and Board Secretary are authorized to execute and deliver any necessary contracts and reports on behalf of the Board. 

1 comment:

Dave Geller said...

Well I'm certainly questioning the expense.

That is an awful lot of money for a speaker...especially when I'm being told that the reason my 1st grader gets sent home w worthless worksheets instead of books to read is because then there might not be enough books left in the classroom library.

We could fill every classroom in the district w books for our children to read w that money.