LITTLE ROCK, Ark.-Returning to local control has been a hot topic of discussion for the Little Rock School District and the Board of Education.
In the past two weeks, board members have held five public meetings for people to give their input.
The final meeting was Tuesday night at the Board of Education.
This was the first time Education Commissioner Johnny Key was in attendance.
Several board members heard from teachers, students, parents and social workers who all had the same goal in mind.
“Give me back my district,” Tony Orr said.
It was a packed house at the Board of Education on Tuesday night.
“Why do our citizens have to lose their voices,” one man said.
One by one, people addressed several problems the district is facing since the state took over almost five years ago.
“We can do better,” Erica Conley said.
“They are still trying to hold on to the district and it’s time that they give it back you had your shot,” Orr said.
People also spoke about a lack of transparency from the board, schools failing in the district and the state’s standardized testing system.
“I think what we can do to improve those schools is to provide that our educators and researchers have said we need,” Vicki Hatter said.
But not everyone agreed with the local idea of local control.
“Be different this time when they take over again. I would the issue is not who is in control but the methods that are,” one woman said.
Education Commissioner Johnny Key heard from people for the first time.
“I want him to know that we are actually people and they need to treat people this is not Walmart and you are not working for a corporation these are children that have problems and we need we can get,” Conley said.
In the end, people just want the best for students.
“It’s our time now to save democracy in Little Rock and that choice is in your hands,” one man said.
After board members heard from people, they took a quick break.
Once they returned, board members asked staff from the Little Rock School District If they had any questions.
The Board of Education did not make any decisions.