CHAIR DAVIS ISSUES STATEMENT FOLLOWING COUNCIL BRIEFING ON HEAD START AND STUDENT SAFETY
It is the responsibility of adults to keep children safe. The Prince George’s County Council holds as its highest priority, the safety and welfare of our children and students enrolled in Prince George’s County schools.
All of us, as leaders in this County, have a duty to do everything possible to ensure that our school system fulfills its most sacred duty — protect every student and provide the best education possible in a safe and caring learning environment.
The litany of issues that have recently come to light involving the administration of County schools and student safety has been truly shocking, horrifying, and absolutely unacceptable.
The students, parents and education stakeholders of our County deserve better. All of us on this Council, and the residents we serve, demand immediate corrective action to fix the institutional problems that have become so apparent.
This clear mandate is the reason the County Council held a Committee of the Whole today featuring a briefing from Prince George’s County Schools CEO Dr. Kevin Maxwell, Board of Education Chair Dr. Segun Eubanks, Board of Education Vice-Chair Carolyn Boston, and Board Member Curtis Valentine on the status of the Head Start program and student safety concerns.
As Council Members, we hear daily from County residents, including parents, guardians and education stakeholders who are expressing outrage and increased skepticism with regard to County school operations and the way our students have been treated. Quite frankly, the members of this body share their deep concern, and individually and collectively, we believe much more needs to be done to improve the school board’s administrative oversight and the school system’s managerial functions. Simply put, we must take better care of our children and our students.
Moving forward, the Council, by exercising our oversight role and by insisting on a management structure and set of values that require full accountability, will need to see hard evidence of the measures being taken to ensure these lapses will not happen again and that any systemic issues are comprehensively addressed.
There must be full accountability for what has transpired and work must done to expeditiously repair the broken trust between our County’s students and their parents and guardians, and Prince George’s County Schools.
The Prince George’s County school system is charged with protecting and educating the most precious and vulnerable members of our society, our children. Providing for their well-being and protection must be our highest priority. We look forward to the willing partnership of the Board of Education and Prince George’s County Schools in exercising this responsibility.