Radio host bristles at township for keeping schools open on MLK Day

INDIANAPOLIS - Every public school district in Marion County - including Indianapolis Public Schools - closed its doors Monday for the observance of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., holiday. That is, except Franklin Township. That district was open to make up for snow days. Now, one local radio talk show host took exception with that decision.

Host Amos Brown said he remembers the bus rides, the protests and the struggles that were needed to get MLK day declared a national holiday. He was very disappointed, but one parent took the school day in stride.

Dean Vinson is a parts quality engineer at Honda Manufacturing of Indiana. But Monday, he was reading the “I Have A Dream” book to kindergarten students at Kitley Elementary School in Franklin township. 

Vinson's son is a student in this class, and the parent has no problem with the district holding school Monday.

"I'm happy that the school is open today. I'm happy that they allowed us to come here and talk to kids about MLK,” Vinson said. “Even though teachers are teaching them, it’s always good to get information from a different source."  

On the other hand, on his radio show, host Amos Brown was outraged that Franklin Township was open, along with Avon, Center Grove, Greenfield, Lebanon, Plainfield, Westfield and Western Boone school districts.

"It may be that my read of Dr. King and what he stood for isn't their read,” Brown said. “And they don't understand the significance of why this day exists, which is to commemorate someone who changed the face of not just this country, but of the world."

The marquee at the middle school noted that MLK day was a makeup snow day. Next month President's Day will be one, too.  And with the way the winter is going, there could be more.

RTV6’s Derrik Thomas did not talk to any parents who were upset school was being held.

If the school district loses any more days to snow, it will be asking high school seniors to come to school after they’ve been handed their diplomas. 

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