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Folks, this is an exceptionally long post, but I implore you, whether you have children in Cleveland County schools or not IF YOU CARE ABOUT THE SAFETY AND EDUCATION OF CLEVELAND COUNTY’S SCHOOL CHILDREN please read this and please TAKE ACTION. This upcoming election for the Cleveland County Board Of Education (BOE) (school board) is critical for the safety and education of Cleveland County’s school children. There is a serious bullying problem in our schools and not only is nothing being done about it, but it is also being hidden.

 

This has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with politics. It is about the safety of YOUR children or the children of family and friends.

 

On February 17, 2023, an organization called Sunshine Request filed a public records request (PRR) with the Cleveland County Schools (CCS) asking for “ALL electronic communications [Text Messages, Emails, Voicemails, etc.], sent to, sent from, or sent between the Superintendent of Cleveland County Schools, any and all Principals of Cleveland County Schools, any and all Administrative personnel, and any and all members of the Cleveland County School Board. During the time period of 01/02/2023 through 02/09/2023. Specifically, as relates to “bullies,” “bullying,” “fights,” or “violence” at Cleveland County Schools.”

 

To shorten this post, the CCS communications director Dr. Gregg Shull, and one of the CCS attorneys, Leigha Sink became involved with Sunshine Request’s request. There were a few emails back and forth but the most important emails from CCS stated 3,200 emails met the request criteria and for Sunshine Request to get the information CCS was going to charge Sunshine Request $165.00. Sunshine Request questioned the validity of CCS’s stated reason for the charge and requested clarification. After that, CCS blew Sunshine Request of until on December 20, 2023, Sunshine Request sent what Sunshine Request deemed their final effort to get a response from CCS. Below is a cut and paste of SOME of the narrative in Sunshine Request’s email to CCS.

 

This is my final attempt to follow up regarding my public records request. I submitted it to CCS on February 17, 2023:Records Request: (February 2023) Request for Cleveland County, NC Schools: All electronic communications related to “bullies”, “bullying”, “fights”, or “violence”. From 01/02/23 – 02/09/23.

 

To date, you have not addressed my email from June 02 which was specifically about fees. I have also offered to give you a call to discuss this.

 

Having made all reasonable attempts to follow up with you, and having received no reply — I’m going to now mark this request as having been “Denied” by your organization. If you would like to respond to me in the future, I’ll be happy to reopen my request at that time.

 

(I added the bold print)

If anyone is interested, you can read all of the email exchanges between Sunshine Request and CCS at www.sunshinerequest.com/search/bullying/  the emails are in the second block with this emoji

 

When I learned of Sunshine Request’s request and the reply from CCS that CCS was charging Sunshine Request $165.00 and it appeared Sunshine Request refused to pay the fee until/unless CCS responded to Sunshine Request’s emails with clarification, I submitted an identical PRR on behalf of Parents Against Bullying NC, Inc (PABNC). Rather than post the narrative of each email exchanged between me on behalf of PABNC and Dr. Shull, I have cut and pasted my email exchange with Dr. Shull from this past Monday, January 8 which is in chronological order. If anyone is interested in reading the full emails I will be happy to provide them to Truth Be Told.

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