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Sinquefield Comment Offensive to Public Schools

Eric Churchwell, President of the Missouri Association of School Administrators and Superintendent of the Palmyra R-I School District has characterized comments made by billionaire Rex Sinquefield on Thursday night as “offensive to every student, parent, employee, teacher, administrator, and school board member in a public school.”

In a videotape of a meeting at Lindenwood University Thursday night, Sinquefield can be clearly heard repeating a story he had read, “…a long time ago, decades ago, the Ku Klux Klan got together and said, 'how can we really hurt the African American children permanently? How can we ruin their lives? And what they designed was the public school system.…' ” Video of the offensive comment was captured and posted to YouTube. It is available at this internet address:  http://youtu.be/-vSpyB6s3cE .

“Mr. Sinquefield is the largest political contributor in the state and has donated millions of dollars to politicians and campaigns to advance his personal agenda.  Whether they have benefited from these contributions or not, it is time for politicians to stand up for public school employees and to denounce this racist comment,” Churchwell said.

Missouri schools face real challenges with shrinking budgets and they are serving more children in poverty than ever before. Now is the time for serious and thoughtful solutions that support our public schools, not degrade them. Sinquefield owes an apology to the parents, children, and workers who make our schools an environment where every child can realize his/her potential.