Paducah - McCracken County NAACP Facebook page profile picture
Members of the community are in the process of signing a petition for the immediate removal of Superintendent Donald Shively and elected members of the Board of Education. The petition, posted on the Paducah/McCracken County NAACP Facebook page, set a goal of 1,500 signatures. After posting the petition Tuesday morning, 1,140 signatures have been collected.
The petition, started by Savvy Shabazz, is in response to a photo that circulated on social media last week. The photo was a picture of Shively in blackface wearing a Paducah Tilghman shirt and gold chain around his neck. He was accompanied by a woman in blackface with an Afro hairstyle and padded bottom. The picture was taken in 2002 while Shively was a teacher at Paducah Tilghman High School.
According to reports and posts/tweets on the petition, students and parents of the Paducah Public Schools believe their voices aren't being heard. The group of petitioners believe the removal of Shively and the board is the only way for healing to begin.
Some of the comments posted on the petition include:
"When he made the decision to dress as black face he was already in an education system by 2006 he was already teaching at Paducah Tilghman High School as a chemistry teacher and football coach, he was teaching the very kids you made a mockery out of. How does he expect us to respect him and accept you apology? During this time in 2006 or 2002 whenever the photo was taken, he knew it was wrong!" India Broady
"His behavior was not only highly offensive but violates the code of ethics by having on school apparel while promoting alcohol use.' Brendae McClure
There are a number of comments like this on the petition website. If you're interested in reading more comments, go to the Paducah/McCracken County Facebook page.
President JW Cleary released a statement earlier today:
Today members of the Paducah McCracken County NAACP met with Dr. Donald Shively. Among those present were the NAACP President, NAACP members, a retired educator, community member, and parent representative. We met for approximately two hours to discuss the superintendent's blackface photo incident. Our stand has not changed, we are still calling for the resignation of the superintendent. During the course of the meeting, Dr. Shively gave no indication the he intends to resign. We have requested to meet with members of the Board of Education as soon as possible to discuss the matter further.