JCPS parents complain, but few turnout to put it on the record

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The largest school district in the state is looking for a new leader, but in one of two chances for parents to give their feedback, only about a dozen showed up.  WAVE 3's Elizabeth Donatelli asked parents on facebook why they didn't attend.  Most say they didn't think anyone would listen to them.  In person, however, many parents say they didn't know about the meeting.

In this phase there are only two chances for the community to speak to the search firm, McPherson & Jacobson, about the superintendent search, but few people showed-up Monday night.

"I'm troubled tonight because this room is not packed," said Joe Stephenson in Monday night's public hearing. "With all of the problems were having in Jefferson County School Board, man, I just can't believe."

WAVE 3 asked several parents in the community why they didn't go.

"Didn't really know about it," said JCPS parent Tim Barnes.

JCPS reached out via facebook, twitter, and their website.  Lauren Roberts, a spokesperson for JCPS, says they asked principals, community organizations, and PTA members to distribute the information.

"Why isn't it just coming through our schools where are kids are at?" asked Barnes.  "Why aren't notices being sent home via that?"

Roberts says there wasn't enough time to send out a mailing.

Dr. Richard Sunblad with McPherson & Jacobson Search Firm told WAVE 3 Monday that they would compile all the feedback into a summary, but parents are divided on whether to weigh-in.

"It wouldn't matter," said a JCPS parent washing windows, who declined to give his name. "They're probably not going to listen to most of the people anyway."

Some say they want to be involved now that they know about it, others, like the window washer, say definitely not.

"I didn't know about it, but now that I do know about it I probably will be attending it," said JCPS parent Dawn Nuckles.  "I do appreciate you letting me know."

That final public meeting is at VanHoose Education Center Tuesday at 7 p.m. and is open to the public.

Tuesday afternoon the consultants met with community groups, but neither they, nor School Board Chair Steve Imhoff returned WAVE 3'S calls.  Roberts did, however, share the list with WAVE 3, which includes the YMCA, Hispanic Achievers, and Kentucky Jobs with Justice.

Parents can also fill out an online survey.

Roberts says it is "unfortunate" that public turnout is historically low for this part of the superintendent search, but in the past has increased when the candidates come back to interview.

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