It seems to me that you have been pushing for one high school for as long as I can remember but now that it affects your district, hmm, well, obviously it has become a "not in my back yard" situation.
I did not care for your comment that you made at the last meeting of the whole when the superintendent announced the plan he would support. (Your inappropriate joke ) that now that the actual half split of the city is 21st avenue east, and you obviously live on the boundary, that you would move over one block. How insulting. I am a central parent and found your joke incredibly insulting.
Let me assure you, plenty of parents in the Central district would not take kindly to your remarks.
Seems one high school only suits you if that one high school is East.
I await your comments.
My Testy "Comments"
What evidence do you have that I have been pushing for one high school? I have no recollection of calling for one high school. Two years ago, I suggested that Central would be a better site than East for a High school. I gave up on that idea when the rest of the School Board ignored me. Then I called for a two high school plan which kept East and Denfeld open. I called it the "Zenith Plan." Its been on my website for the last two and a half years. Check it out for yourself. http://snowbizz.com/Crisis/TheZenithPlanOutlined.htm
Too many people are in denial about our population losses. We have more buildings than kids and it keeps getting worse. We could have closed a high school twelve years ago but after an uproar the school board closed five elementary schools instead. That's when my son was sent to Woodland as a fifth grader. I considered him a guinea pig for a spineless School Board which put the high schools ahead of elementary schools. In addition to those five closed elementary schools we recently closed Birchwood. Even if we close a high school now it will not be enough. We will still need to close additional elementary schools. If we don't close a high school we will have to close another three of four elementary schools. I'll be damned if I'll see ten elementary schools sacrificed to save three high schools.
Why, especially if Central is a better site, should it be closed rather than East?
No matter which high school we close Central will be the most affected. That will obviously be true if we close Central. Its kids will be split up between the two remaining schools. But even if we close Denfeld instead, half the Central kids would be moved to East High to make room for the Denfeld kids. If we closed East High half the Central kids would be pushed into Denfeld to make room in Central for the East kids. In either case the East and Denfeld kids would mostly stay together.
The only way to save Central is to 1., find more money. This means an excess levy. We, the School Board, can not raise taxes any higher than they are now by ourselves. The voters will have to approve it. I worked my butt off to pass an excess levy two years ago. I personally passed out 20,000 flyers. It wasn't a popular cause and we lost because most voters thought we should have closed a school before bringing an excess levy to them. I'm sure they feel the same way today. By the way, did you do anything to help pass that levy?
Or 2, we could also try to keep three high schools open by closing a junior high and five more elementary schools. Unfortunately, this still wouldn't save enough money. Already this year we are five million short and were forced to lay-off 75 teachers. Next year we will be 5.9 million short and will probably have to lay off another 75 teachers.
B, Something has got to give. I want to get rid of the CAB. That would save a couple hundred thousand dollars a year. Unfortunately, that amount is peanuts.
I went to the Denfeld meeting this week and told the parents there what I thought we ought to do - close Central. Since I want to keep Denfeld open they didn't mind too much. I told them the real test would be when I faced Central parents and told them the same thing. I will face them. I wouldn't want a doctor to tell me I had a cold when I was really dying from leukemia. Elected officials should be just as candid.
Even though I made it clear that Central (or some high school) had to close the Denfeld parents are now calling to save all three high schools. They don't want to keep their school open at Central's expense. That's very nice of them but, you know, the western end of town voted most strongly against the excess levy two years ago.
As for my joking about 21st Ave. Give me a break. Bob Mars joked about my living on the avenue too. This is awful stuff we are having to decide. We need to find something to lighten our depressing discussions. If you really think that I dissed Central then you have every right to be mad at me. The fact is, I like Central. I was so damn mad at some snotty eastern parents a couple years ago when I heard them sneer that they didn't want their children to go to school with "those children" that I proposed closing East rather than Central. The more I thought about it the more I realized how much better the Central site and building was than the East building. Even now there are people in my neighborhood who still think I intend to close East.
There are a lot of things about Central that I prefer over East. When I was in sixth grade the white kids in my classroom were slightly out-numbered by the minority kids. It would do East kids a world of good to be in a little more cosmopolitan environment. And two more things, neither of my children felt much affection for East and I attended Mankato High School in southern Minnesota. I feel no loyalty towards East; just to the education it provides.
If you think I'm caving in to East parents then you didn't watch me stand up to the East hockey lobby. I disappointed a hell of a lot of very angry, and very powerful people who live in my District. Even now they've recruited someone to run against me. That's their prerogative. As for me, I'd rather lose an election than cave in to people based on their power and influence, especially when they are wrong.
I believe that one High School needs to close not two. It makes the most sense to me to close Central. I take no pleasure in this. Its just my considered opinion, one I've been considering for twelve long years.