Students should share in scholarships
The following is a letter to the Tahoe Truckee Scholarship Committee.In February our friend Vicki Wright succumbed to cancer. Vicki had been a tireless supporter of our community schools and of her daughters educations, recognizing and celebrating their individuality.Friends of Vicki set up a scholarship in her honor, and turned it over to the Tahoe Truckee Scholarship Committee for administration. The committee has administered scholarships from most of our community clubs and organizations, and fulfilled a need in North Tahoe and Truckee. However, the committee discriminates against a few public school students in our community by excluding them from even applying. Their applications are pulled out of the stack and not considered. Do you believe that it is the intent of the Truckee and North Tahoe organizations sponsoring community scholarships to exclude these public school seniors? Have you advised the organizations whose scholarships you administer that you are excluding these students? Are you creating a situation that violates the non-discrimination rules of their non-profit status?When the committee was formed there were no public schools in the Tahoe Truckee district except within Tahoe Truckee Unified School District. From 1998 through 2003, there was another public school within TTUSD Prosser Creek Charter School. Approximately 200 local seniors who graduated from PCCS over five years were not allowed to apply for the community scholarships you administer. After PCCS was closed, Truckee and North Tahoe students who wanted to continue with a public charter school were sponsored by Forest Charter School. You have now disqualified approximately 30 more local seniors who graduated in 2004-2005.Forest Charter school students attend classes in Truckee at Forest School and in various community rooms. They are Truckee and North Tahoe public school students attending school in Truckee. They are living and attending school in this district. Their parents belong to clubs, work and pay taxes in TruckeeNorth Tahoe; the students do their community service volunteering here. Their school is chartered by the Nevada City district simply because TTUSD doesnt have a charter school. Please either reconsider your interpretation of the committees bylaws, or amend them. Times have changed since your formation. There is another public school operating in the Tahoe Truckee district. We are not alone in this quandary: supporting the memorial scholarship in honor of Vicki Wright under your committees rules is not what Vicki would have wanted. Vicki honored and supported diversity. The scholarship in her honor would exclude her own daughter from applying. Social justice demands we come together as a community and stop the discrimination and exclusionary tactics. We are all dedicated to ensuring that all our children succeed in school and in life. Dick and Helga Munday are Truckee residents.
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