Despite differences, talk is good

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Perhaps the Adams County Supervisors and Natchez-Adams School Board President Tim Blalock let their discussion on Monday get a little heated.

At least they are talking.

We hope they keep talking.

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Such has not always been the case. In the not-so-distant past, the only time city and county officials would see their school board appointees would be when the appointees were first selected and then again when they showed up at a meeting to resign.

Talk is good, even though sometimes it can be painful to listen to others who don’t share your opinion.

The supervisors summoned its two county appointees to the school board on Monday to talk about grumbling of discontent in the community involving personnel decisions made by NASD Superintendent Frederick Hill.

Blalock and several supervisors clashed during Monday’s meeting, so much so supervisors later voted to ask for his resignation. Supervisors are not allowed by law to remove an appointee mid-term.

Blalock, whose term ends in February 2016, said he has no plans to resign.

In the calm after Monday’s storm, the supervisors would do well to think again about several points Blalock made about the state of the NASD.

He said schools aren’t judged like they once were. Today, it’s a numbers game, like it or not, meaning the success or failure of a school is dependent now on test scores. And test scores in the Natchez-Adams School District are up since Hill came onboard.

Blalock said change is often a difficult and painful process. However, after the change takes place, situations in the workplace stabilize. That’s difficult to imagine at the moment with two lawsuits by former district administrators pending and yet more changes in school principals on tap for next school year.

Blalock implied Hill is making difficult changes to bring new ideas and energy where needed, while working to keep the school district operating with an ever-decreasing budget.

The supervisors would do well to consider the new education environment and difficult position in which the district’s leadership is in, and keep, calmly talking through the matters at hand.