The Memphis City School board wanted more parental involvement. And in a way, it has gotten it. After the December 12th runoff election, Lee Brown and Patrice Jordan Robinson join Wanda Halbert as the newest members of the board, taking the District 1, 3, and At-Large (Position 1) seats, respectively. Both Robinson and Halbert ran on platforms of being MCS parents.
"I decided to run because I had a child in the school system and the other parents and I would complain," says Robinson. "But I decided I couldn't continue to complain because then I was just contributing to the problem." Robinson currently has a 16-year-old son in the Memphis city schools, as well as three other children who are city school graduates.
"I think we have a gap in communication between the parents and the system. I want to help heal that relationship," she says. Robinson also wants to get everyone who has a stake in public education, including teachers, parents, businesses, and even the students themselves, involved. Lee Brown also has two children who graduated from MCS.
The incumbent of At-Large Position 1, Bill Todd, is a retired MCS athletic director; his two sons were not educated by the school system. Neither were the children of District 1 incumbent Jim Brown.