MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Community members took part in a forum discussing the future of Montgomery Public Schools and the status of its accreditation Tuesday.
Troy University Montgomery hosted the forum at the Rosa Parks Museum beginning at 6 p.m. It’s a part of a series of forums called ‘real talk’.
“This is something that should be important to everyone in the community whether you have children or not. You may be employing a student or former student in Montgomery Public Schools. It should be a topic we are all interested in and investing in our public schools," said Dr. Felicia Bell, Director of Troy University’s Rosa Parks Museum.
Bernard Mitchell,the assistant Superintendent of MPS, will be among the panelists, along with Zestlan Simmons, Alabama Teacher of the year from Booker T. Washington Magnet High School, and Phillip Ensler, a civil rights lawyer and education advocate.
Donna Armstead is a long time resident of Montgomery. All three of her children graduated from MPS. Her biggest concerns have to do with parent involvement.
“The whole family system has disrupted over the years so that is part of the problem,” said Armstead.
She believes by the entire community stepping to assist, parents play an active role in their children’s education is key.
“We have got to take it seriously on every level from the top to the bottom," said Armstead. “Those student are going to be contributing, so they can contribute at a lower level or on a higher level. I want them to be the best they can be."
MPS’ accreditation is currently under review from its accrediting agency. The system is also under state intervention.
During the forum the panelist did emphasize the importance of communicating a positive message of hope and opportunity and support for MPS students. They encouraged the community to get involved and find organizations in the community that are having a positive impact in student success.
Troy University’s Rosa Parks Museum “real talk” series will continue May 7 at the Union Station Train Shed with a panel discussion on women’s grassroots effort to mobilize the vote.