Our children, our best

4/21/2017, 7 a.m.

With Ms. Jackson at the helm of the federal investigation, we are unsure how thorough and meaningful the probe will be.

Rep. McEachin expressed similar reservations in a statement to the Free Press on Wednesday.

“I immediately began my research on Candice Jackson when I learned about her appointment as the assistant secretary of the Office for Civil Rights within the Department of Education,” he stated. Her “past positions on affirmative action and her seeming insensitivity to differently abled students’ needs do not lead me to believe that our student, teachers and parents will have an advocate supervising OCR.”

“However, I hope that I am mistaken and that, in spite of her past, the investigators who work in OCR will still conduct a thorough and fair investigation so that our children will be able to thrive.”

Regardless of the outcome, we must understand this is a call to people within the community to stay on top of the situation, to continue to gather facts and help point Richmond and other public school systems toward experts who can help provide solutions, perhaps through model schools that have employed successful anti-bias strategies.

We cannot rely solely on the federal government at this time to provide a path to success. With that in mind, we point out that Rep. McEachin also has established a community-based task force to focus on this problem.

We look to that group to also come up with recommendations to help solve a tough, but not intractable problem. Our children deserve the best efforts we can provide.