Not a statement likely to suppress questions

Dear Members of the Media,

Effective immediately, I have resigned from the Duluth School Board. I made this decision as I have been compelled by ongoing circumstances to take steps to prioritize my health and well-being, family, and career.

Many personal factors informed my decision, however, I’d be remiss to not speak my peace to the general public that elected me. Life is too short and time with children is ever important to me. I made the choice to serve on the Duluth School Board because I wanted to be part of supporting a system that is focused on providing a vital service to the youth of our community.

The responsibility of the school board under the guidance of administration and board leadership to its community is to govern efficiently and lead effectively to provide for equitable education, resulting in high student achievement. Unfortunately, my experience in striving to provide accountability to educational equity has been met with what I perceive as a dismissive, maintain the status-quo approach.

My comments at a summer Education Committee (I believe in June) in response to the annual report on graduation rates and student test scores were: “Trying hard is not good enough.” The annual refrain from district leadership is: “We have improved, but it is still not acceptable.” Of course it is unacceptable, but where is the accountability and a sense of urgency?

My commentary does not reflect on school staff, principals, nor some of my board colleagues.

These are my comments for now. I would appreciate privacy moving forward.

Josh Gorham