Statement: Board, Carson have to go
By Lynn R. Parks
A group of citizens is demanding that Woodbridge superintendent
Kevin Carson be fired and that all board members resign.
At last week's school board meeting, a group of five, including
Daniel Kramer, Ed Bauer and Eunice Bauer, read statements that accused
the board members and Carson of having failed in their jobs. The
group then demanded that Carson's employment contract be terminated
and that the board members resign.
"We need people who will do what the community is asking," said
Kramer, 54, Greenwood. "We need somebody who is honest. I don't
trust any of them. They have lied to the public and I don't think
anybody in the community with half a brain would trust any of them."
The demand follows on the heels of two failed referendums. In February,
the district asked voters to approve a 69.5-percent hike in school
taxes to pay for a new middle school and for renovations at existing
Voters defeated a second referendum in May that asked for a 59.5-percent
tax hike and a boost in the capitation tax.
According to Carson, the new school is needed to ease overcrowding
in the elementary and junior-senior high schools.
"All I hear is 'overcrowding,' " said Kramer. "But there is no such
"When you have 900 enrolled in a school that was built for 700,
that is overcrowding," said board president Debbie Stogner, Greenwood.
"When the state mandated class size reduction in kindergarten through
grade three, we were one of the few districts in the state that
did not ask for a variance. We were really proud of that, but there
are ramifications. You can't have classes meeting in the auditorium,
in the gym, in the hallways. You have to put them someplace."
The elementary school in Greenwood will get four new modular classrooms
next year - it already has seven - and the junior-senior high school
in Bridgeville will get four. It already has one trailer with two
classrooms in it.
In their statements, the group accused the district administration
of "destroy[ing] the trust and respect of the community" through
"lies, half-truths and deceitful propaganda."
It adds: "Your idle thinking and your thoughtless and uncaring spendthrift
ways have destroyed the morale of the teachers and the learning
interests of the entire student body É Your administrative leadership
has been unable to nurture sufficient growth for any of the reform
efforts put forth by you É You have consistently failed to provide
the appropriate high level of educational services to the students
of the district."
Stogner said that she was "hurt by the generalities" contained in the statement.
"Specifics are a lot easier to address," she said. "But generalities
are hard to address. It gets to the point that it doesn't matter what
She said that in the second referendum, the district tried to address
concerns expressed by members of the community. While the February
tax hike would have paid for a new administrative building, that was
dropped in the May referendum. The capitation tax hike was meant to
answer complaints that property owners bear an unfair portion of school
costs. But the fact that new athletic fields were left in the second
proposal angered Kramer.
"There is nothing wrong with the fields we have," he said. "They can
expand the current football field."
Kramer said that the fact that last year's Raider football team won
all its regular season games points to the fact that the field is
As for the Woodbridge-Middletown playoff game that was played on Seaford's
football field after the state ruled that the field in Bridgeville
was too small, even though Woodbridge had home-team advantage, "That
[Raider] football team would have lost no matter where they played,"
he said. "It wasn't the field, it was the other team. They were better."
Stogner urged all Woodbridge district residents to get involved with
the schools. "There are a lot of things we are doing that are good,"
she said. "Being involved helps people see the whole picture. I don't
like to criticize. I'd rather get involved and then offer ideas, so
we can work together for the benefit of students."
Kramer said that he intends to visit the district's schools, to "look
them over from top to bottom."
But he foresees little that would prompt him to support another referendum.
"They need to forget that new school," he said. "They need to get
rid of the idea that they need new athletic fields. A good teacher
can teach in any setting.
"Years ago, we had one-room schoolhouses and teachers taught six grades.
Today, you have teachers teaching one subject all day long, and they
can't teach that. What's wrong with that picture?"