Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Success!

This will possibly be my last update in the case of Ms Stephanie Turner and her son. For those of you who weren't aware young Christopher was singled out not only by his teacher but by his bus driver. He was told his faith wasn't a religion and was told not write about it during a class project that discussed the origins of Christmas. His bus driver who overheard a conversation between Christopher and his other Hispanic friends gave Christopher in school suspension and was told to no longer speak in a language that he (the driver) couldn't understand. The other children however were not spoken too. After many attempts to contact the school it would seem that she was being ignored.

Thankfully due to the enormous support from the Pagan community a task force swooped in and positioned themselves as mediators and representatives of the family. Recently a statement was released to update everyone on the progress of the situation.

Statement from Bowdon Elementary School, Carroll County School District, and members of the Turner Family Support Task Force as represented by Lady Liberty League, North Georgia Solitaries, Covenant of the Goddess, Dogwood Local Council, and Circle Sanctuary:

The Turner Family, Task Force, and School District want Bowdon School to be a positive, supportive environment which fosters the emotional ...and educational growth of all students.

With education, cooperation, and open dialogue, all things are possible.

At times, a lack of life experience and/or other circumstances can make it difficult to perceive how words and actions might cause offense or upset. The parties involved acknowledge that words and deeds can be hurtful even without the intent of making them so.

In an effort to reach a positive and collaborative resolution to recent events, an alliance of the parties involved has come to pass which will set the stage for future education for school staff, students, and parents on the topic of equality and respect for all students and families in the Carroll County School System.

First, a sincere apology for recent events and misunderstandings has been given by School Administration and accepted by the family.

Second, the Bowdon Elementary School guidance Counselor will educate staff and students about honoring and accepting the differences that make us individuals.

Third, procedures have been put in place to ensure classroom activities don't alienate students. As part of this, the administration and teachers will have yearly training about the District's Code of Ethics and the responsibilities of each staff member to preserve the integrity of every students' rights.

We appreciate the hard work and open dialogue of all the parties involved to create this positive resolution. The Turner children will return to school. The Carroll County School District will continue to strive to be a place that fosters the emotional and educational growth of all students regardless of religion, race, national origin, gender or disability.
Stephanie Turner appeared in the first part of Pagan Warrior Radio's Tuesday night show hosted by Selena Fox and Pamela Kelly. The show is available on i-Tunes for free download.

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