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‘A capital improvement of $10.5 million for a single, primarily white high school in the west’

From a letter from Prince William County School Board Chairman Ryan Sawyers, Vice Chair Lillie Jessie, and Loree Williams to the United States Department of Justice

Sawyers

Sawyers

“Of current concern to the undersigned members of the [Prince William County School Board] PWCSB is a recent gambit in which the [Prince William County Board of Supervisors] PWCBOCS offered previously-unappropriated funds to the PWCSB for the express purpose of selecting a more expensive and opulent design for a new high school to be built in the predominantly white western portion of the County, which it would then match with an equal amount to be

Jessie

Jessie

generally used in the predominantly minority eastern part of the County.

In other words, a capital improvement of $10.5 million for a single, primarily white high school in the west, along with $10.5 million to be used at dozens of predominantly black/Hispanic elementary schools in the east. Potential funding for predominately minority schools was made contingent upon the approval of a more extravagant model for

Williams

Williams

the new high school in the predominately white portion of the county.

The anticipated enrollment of the new high school in the west is 2,500, which represents $4,200/per student, while the combined attendance of elementary schools in the east is approximately 21,000, meaning that $500/per student has been made available in the primarily minority schools. This proposal was unfortunately accepted by the PWCSB on January 4, 2017, by a vote of 5-3 (with the undersigned providing the three votes against).”

Updated

Reaction from elected officials in Prince Willaim County: 

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