County school Supt. Dallas Dance ignores taxpayers' concerns [Letter]

Contrary to letter writer Marilyn Pettiway's claim that the media's coverage of Baltimore County School Supt. Dallas Dance has been unfair, The Sun and other outlets not only have reported fairly but have conscientiously followed Mr. Dance's outrageous actions that have cause havoc in every corner of Baltimore County over the last year ("Stop beating up on county school superintendent Dallas Dance Aug. 25).

In November, when the parents of Hereford High School sought to keep in place a schedule that has had proven success for 22 years and which was not only in place at Hereford but several other county schools as well, they contacted state Sen. James Brochin and Del. Wade Kach to assist parents in their efforts when Mr. Dance refused to meet with them. Then it became necessary to seek other elected officials, including the entire Baltimore County Council, to step in to requests that the superintendent reconsider the decisions he had made, but to no avail.

This year's controversial issues with Mr. Dance were not limited to the Hereford scheduling problem. Many other stakeholders packed the monthly meetings at the Board of Education to voice opinions. In April it was necessary again for elected officials to step in with regard to the Loch Raven issue. A letter was sent to Mr. Dance, signed by Councilman David Marks, Council Chairwoman Cathy Bevins, state Senator Brochin and Dels. Sue Aumann, William Frank and Steve Lafferty, asking Mr. Dance to assure the community that Loch Raven Elementary School would not be demolished. Not until County Executive Kevin Kamenetz made the same request did Mr. Dance change course.

Mr. Brochin and Mr. McDonough were certainly not alone in speaking out and showing concern for the citizens that they represent. I would ask the parents and grandparents of Baltimore County to stay informed. Our schools are changing rapidly at the hands of one person, and with no stakeholder involvement.

I am sure that elementary students know and like Mr. Dance, whose video message greets them in the morning. After all, he is putting a digital device into the hands of our first graders this year.

Mr. Dance" has received $1.1 billion in funds from county taxpayers, yet he continuously chooses to ignore the very stakeholders he refuses to compromise with. Meanwhile, the taxpayers of Baltimore County are funding the most monumental changes to our children's education with no voice in the decisions that are made.

Connie Taylor

The writer is the parent of a Hereford High School student.

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