School board chairman Earl Campbell occasionally responds to frequent critics of the Beaufort County School District, but he took it one step further at Tuesday night’s board meeting by telling unnamed critics they will “go to hell.”
“Sometimes people get their blood pressure up staying negative, but you will die and go to hell and these kids will still be here and some of us will still be here,” he said.
Campbell said he was not talking about one individual in the county, but his remarks appeared aimed at Citizens Advocating Responsible Education, a local advocacy group known informally as CARE.
During a public comment period earlier in Tuesday’s meeting, CARE co-founder Rich Bisi criticized the district’s test scores, though the group tackles a variety of education topics, including attendance, credit card spending and school board elections.
In an emailed response to Campbell, Bisi wrote, “Your comments were not only beyond the pale, they were indicative of your complete lack of understanding regarding the nature of public conversation, a complete misunderstanding of your role as the supposed Chair of the (Board of Education), and a complete disregard for fairness, decency and probity.”
Campbell did not return multiple phone calls for comment.
“We always can find bad things to talk about, but we never talk about the good things that happen in this county,” he said at the meeting.
Campbell is the longest-serving current member of the board.