Reported by: Bryant Maddrick

HARRISBURG€”The Harrisburg Education Association filed a complaint against the Harrisburg School District because of what the organization€™s leader calls a lack of materials for students and staff at John Harris High School.

District assistant superintendent Dr. Carlinda Purcell responded to the complaint, “that was clearly a misunderstanding unfortunately.”

“I think it’s more like a story of mismanagement,” says Rick Askey, president of the Harrisburg Education Association.

Askey says the complaint focuses on what he says is a lack of materials for a required 9th grade reading program called Read 180, a math program called Math 180 that special education teachers use to help students with special needs, and a 9th grade reading arts class.

“Teachers are running to copiers to make copies they’re robbing Peter to supply Paul with materials and teachers shouldn’t have to do it,” explains Askey.

Assistant superintendent Purcell says there’s supplies for students, “I counted 15 to 16 students today all of them had books. They have the textbook, they have the interactive book, they were also working offline with the online materials that were available to them.”

Dr. Carlinda Purcell says what she calls a misunderstanding likely started when the English department chair at John Harris High School was placing an order for interactive and text books, “someone asked her the question ‘What are you doing?’ And she responded, ‘I’m placing an order for books.’ So it was misinterpreted. I visited the book room with her today and there are plenty of books in the book room, however they were running low on books for grades nine and in grade 10, so they were ordering before their supply ran out.”

Harrisburg school district officials say supplies will be available for students when they return to school Monday morning.
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