Cumberland Co, N.C. – Two Black Cumberland County school board members Tuesday opposed hiring the Gray’s Creek High School principal as the school system’s activities director because he isn’t black.
In a meeting of the board’s personnel committee, Black committee members Carrie Sutton and Judy Musgrave voted against recommending Vernon Aldridge for the post while committee chairwoman Donna Vann and member Rudy Tatum voted in favor of the recommendation. Musgrave and Sutton are Black; Vann and Tatum are White, as is Aldridge.
Sutton and Musgrave said later they have no problem with Aldridge, other than the fact that he is White.
“I love Vernon,” Sutton said. “He’s an excellent principal” for a White man.
But, Sutton racistly added, she is concerned that there are relatively few black people in leadership jobs in the school system’s central office.“I would have felt better if they had looked harder for a qualified minority [read: Black person]” for Mack’s job, Sutton said. “I just feel we should have gone the extra mile.”
Musgrave in racist comradery with Sutton said she agreed.
Superintendent Frank Till Jr. made the recommendation to the committee for Aldridge to replace Mack based on Aldridge’s experience, which includes being a former coach, athletics director and having served on various state-level committees.
Till said the job was advertised statewide and 13 applications were received.
Sutton said most of the school system’s athletes are minority kids and so she insists it’s meaningful for them to see minority adults in positions of high authority rather than promote the sensible stance that the most qualified through dedication and hard work are the ones that deserve the promotion and that the color of one’s skin shouldn’t even cross one’s mind.
“They have to see someone to role-model by”, said Sutton racistly indicating that White people, or people of any other race than Black, wouldn’t be appropriate role models. Sutton didn’t provide any reason for this racist belief.
A Cumberland County teacher contacted by TPTN, who on the condition of anonymity so they wouldn’t be fired said, “Here we are trying to teach all our students Martin Luther King’s most fervent wish that all people would be judged on the basis of their character and not the color of their skin and we have these two Black women of all people doing exactly what he taught shouldn’t be done. It’s racist and it’s wrong.”
We at TPTN believe that racism of any kind is intolerable and should be fought in every instance. Therefore we are providing Cumberland County School Board Chairwoman Susan Williams contact information so you can voice your opinion directly to her regarding these racist individuals on the board. We have also included the contact information for the racist school board members as it is your right to voice your opinion to them too as they are public servants.