Live from One Guilford UPDATED…

9:23am…I’m here live at the One Guilford event at Guilford College. Not a large crowd, lots of other local Pols are here from GSO Mayor Keith Holliday, city council candidates Robbie Perkins and Mary Rakestraw, County Commissioners Kirk Perkins and Kay Cashion are here. Lots of News & Record staff are here. GCS Board vice-chair Amos Quick is seated on stage, along with Piedmont Triad Partnership’s Don Kirkman, UNCG prof. Andrew Brod, A&T’s Dr. Stanley Battle…

9:27am…County Commission Chair Paul Gibson just opened the program. Just saw GCS Board chair Alan Duncan.

If any of you have questions for me to fire at Amos Quick or even Alan Duncan, fire away…

More in a bit…


9:46am…Dot Kearns is here. Don’t worry, I’ll be on my best behavior 🙂

Saw Greensboro’s Roch Smith walking in the door, good to see you.

PTP’s Don Kirkman just made a good point in his opening remarks…local county governments must work together as one, instead of pitting one against each other.

More in a bit…


10am…Amos Quick takes the stage for his opening remarks…how can GCS better prepare our children.

71.6% of our schools made ABC growth, Quick said. He also quoted the Newsweek “fake” AP rankings (did Sonya Conway write your remarks, Amos?)

He says early childhood education needs to improve in Guilford County.

Quick says a school climate task force is looking at climate and discipline within schools, he is also advocating for next year’s school bond. He also asked to stop the infighting among public officials. We have to reach every child, Quick says.

More in a bit.


10:23am…a facilitator from Guilford College is soliciting responses on what is opportunity preparedness and what can be done.

People are responding by saying a more global approach to education is needed.

I responded by saying that GCS needs to make sure we are educating the whole child and take a second look at our curricula, not stressing our kids can pass a two hour test. Ensure an appropriate funding avenue is in place and stop the infighting between the school board and the county board.

Someone said a strategic plan is needed to address public education in Guilford County. Amos Quick said such a strategic plan exists to address these and other important issues. We’ll try to get the link and post it here.


10:55am…Action GSO reps are here tooting their own horn in terms of the business community stepping up to help support GCS. You’ve seen the commercials on TV and their billboards around town. Amos Quick has stood up and have given them a pat on the back.

One respondent called for the Board of Education to have taxing authority as a means to fund education. To which Dot Kearns said almost immediately: “Let the court say ‘amen.'” She almost jumped up out of her seat. I immediately clutched my wallet.

As usual, Dot is ready and willing to spend your money.

I responded by saying this is a subject that needs research on the state level but I oppose the GCS board having a taxing authority.


11:34am…Breakout sessions are reporting back in.

I just had a good conversation with GSO City Council candidate Mary Rakestraw. She seems to also advocate for educating the whole child versus teaching to a standardized test. She also said she and her husband regularly adopt local area classrooms and are lunch buddies to several of our GCS children.

I distributed several of my campaign fliers.

By the way, Amos and I shook hands and mentioned getting together for coffee in the near future. I said let’s set it up.


12:26pm (back at the home office)…Dr. Julianne Malveaux closed the program by asking for more diversity on panels like these, more participation from young people and young professionals and how everything we do affects the economic livelihood of Guilford County. She appropriately characterized Guilford County as having a “brain drain.”

I shared a cordial hello with Dot Kearns.

I also shook hands with Dr. Malveaux and said that young professionals welcome the opportunity to sit on these local boards and are ready to step up the the plate and join the party, we just need the “invite.”

Had a good brief conversation with my friend and former colleague Doug Clark from the News & Record on my way out the door. In so many words, he said this campaign has come out the door swinging. I appreciated his kind words and told him we will get together soon to talk more.

One thing I did not hear much of this morning is how can we begin to stem the bad behavior on those who sit on these boards. Those that exhibit juvenile behavior seem to get away with it, and that has a disastrous effect on how we as a county can come together. We continue to talk the same things over and over again and the same things continue to come up. Until we as a county begin to come together and demand that the bad behavior stop, the infighting cease among the county board, the school board, and city councils, and demand that harmony begin, Guilford County will continue to miss out on many opportunities. We cannot afford that.


E.C. 🙂


3 Responses

  1. Erik, thanks for this report on One Guilford.

  2. My pleasure, Doug; it was good to see you.

  3. I’m sorry I couldn’t stay, but with ConvergeSouth in less than 48 hours, I had to get back to the office and sneak in some real work as well as my volunteer stuff.

    I hope to meet you this weekend. Great post; told me a lot of what I missed (and I’m sorry I had to miss it).

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