Video and reporting by: Isaiah Showell, Follow South Jersey Multimedia Journalist
PLEASANTVILLE, N.J. — Community members gathered in Pleasantville to protest the Absecon school district’s desire to end its send-receive agreement with Pleasantville Public Schools.
Pleasantville’s school district recently withdrew its objection of Absecon’s petition, which would cause students from Absecon’s K-8 school to be sent to Absegami High School instead of Pleasantville High School. If Governor Phil Murphy signs off on the petition, the changes would take effect, and some community members believe this measure would cause more segregation between the school systems.
The protest was organized by the Mount Zion Baptist Church. Concerned community members marched two-and-a-half miles from Pleasantville to Absecon as part of the event.
“[New Jersey is] one of the most progressive states, one of the richest states, but we have the sixth-most segregated schools in the country,” Willie Francois, a pastor at the Mount Zion Baptist Church, said during the protest. “The secessionist tactics that are being put into play by the Absecon school board and administration to pull out of Pleasantville .. only deepens segregation.”
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