County School Board Members Discuss Whether To Send Resolution On Remarks By Hillsdale College President

  • Monday, July 18, 2022
  • Thea Marshall

Earlier this month, Hillsdale College's Dr. Larry Arnn spoke at a private event where he was taped as saying, “Teachers are trained in the dumbest parts of the dumbest colleges in the country,” among other things. Monday evening, the Hamilton County School Board had a work session where they discussed the possibility of a resolution to sign and send to Governor Bill Lee in regards to the comments. 

According to board member Tucker McClendon, Wilson County and other small counties throughout the state have signed resolutions to show their disapproval.

He also said he believes the state board is participating as well. 

“I would like to see the board stand together and say that we respect our teachers and that we believe in what they do,” said Mr. McClendon. Nearly all the board members had opinions on whether the resolution would be worth their time or not. 

Rhonda Thurman said Dr. Arnn was actually criticizing the Department of Education, the national association of education unions and a number of universities' accreditation programs and not “teachers per se.” Ms. Thurman said she does not see why the board is getting involved in this. 

Joe Smith said the comments were “sickening” but he also does not understand why the board would need to get involved. 

“I think what he said is wrong, but I do agree with his right to say it,” said Mr. Smith. 

Marco Perez said, “I will fight for people’s rights to say dumb things, but I will also tell them if they say something dumb.” 

Karitsa Jones commented, “We have to stand for something and whether it goes anywhere or not at least it goes on record that we took a stand. I believe in the teachers of Hamilton County and I would sign this.” 

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