City councilman blasts school board members for immersion program vote

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Count Wilmington City Councilman Neil Anderson among the Wilmington residents upset at the New Hanover County School Board for voting to move the district’s Spanish Immersion Program from Forest Hills Global Elementary.

WWAY obtained e-mails sent overnight from Anderson’s personal account, the same he lists on his LinkedIn profile, to school board members Ed Higgins and Jeanette Nichols, hours after the board voted to move the Spanish Immersion Program to Gregory School of Science, Math and Technology.

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At 1:02 a.m. Anderson sent an e-mail to Higgins that read:

I look fwd to hearing your reasoning for your rhino vote tonight?
Do u comprehend what u voted in favor of?  Your beloved lcfrwc would not b happy.
Shocked,
Neil Anderson

Six minutes later he sent this message to Nichols:

Of all the members of your board I thought u backed neighborhood schools. U have disappointed me tonight beyond belief. It saddens me, a once beloved board member that no longer  has a clue. I plan to do everything in my power to un seed u when your term is up.
Take care,
Neil Anderson

This morning Nichols responded to the message:

Neil,

Think and act as you wish, but my responsibility is to try to do what is best for all children in New Hanover County.
Most sincerely,
Jeannette


Nichols and Higgins joined Don Hayes and Janice Cavenaugh in voting for the move. A school district spokeswoman said she did not know if Anderson had sent messages to any other members of the board.

A friend tells WWAY Anderson has a daughter who attends Forest Hills. He also attended a school board meeting last month about the possibility of moving the program.

Anderson, Nichols and Higgins have not responded to requests for comment.