Amid increasing concern about the fate of the Prince George’s County Public Schools superintendent, the county chapter of the NAACP hosted an in-depth community forum to address the school system.
State Sen. C. Anthony Muse, who led the two-hour panel discussion at the City of Praise Family Ministries in Landover, called for immediate reform of the public school system.
“That’s why we’re here, to talk about pressing issues prevalent in the school system and the political motives behind a lot of their decisions,” Muse said. “Nobody’s voice should not be heard. You can’t do anything against the giant government, but if we all come together, change can happen.”
In addition to the call for resignation of schools chief Kevin Maxwell, whom many people say has had too many tumultuous public incidents on his watch, other community members also cited low academic testing scores for black PGCPS students and harassment of employees who speak out against unethical school practices.
One county school bus driver vehemently expressed concern for her own children in the school system.
“I have been driving buses for over 11 years,” she said. ” I have a little girl in the first grade and I’m worried about her just from what I have seen alone in the past two years. I want to change that but I can’t do it alone. The school board isn’t the one that makes the decisions — we do.”
As members aired their grievances to the panel and Muse, one unresolved question was County Executive Rushern Baker’s role in the matter.
“It’s important for you to know that some of the pressing issues that we are hearing did not happen overnight and it will not be corrected overnight, but with the right legislation and people, this can be corrected,” Muse said. “Rest assured that I’m not phased by big government officials, I work for the people and that’s all that matters to me.”