Actions speak louder than words. Treat others the way you want to be treated. Bullying is never okay. These are all principles most parents teach their children, most work places expect,and most teachers model in their classrooms. But it has become increasingly clear to me that many of our school board members and school leaders have forgotten these ideals. If you have attended or watched any of the school board meeting in recent months you have seen many parents, students, and citizens express concern about the direction our schools are taking. Most of these concerns and questions have been either ignored or dismissed. Little to no comment or effort had been made to address these concerns. The school board has remained all but silent on the subject of problems which have been brought to them as the district implements new programs. Most have shown no concern with the families and students who have left the district to attend other area schools. I doubt this is how they would want to be treated if they found themselves in a similar situation. This tactic was overwhelmingly obvious when one board member at the last meeting asked to add the discussion of these concerns to the agenda and was unable to get any other board member to second the addition. This seems like bullying to me. What is the harm in adding a legitimate concern to the agenda when numerous citizens including our own mayor would like the board to discuss the topic? Is it because the board doesn’t want to discuss this in a public meeting? Or is it simply to ignore these concerns as if they are not worth the time of the board?  I am aware a letter was sent to parents of high school students explaining different options for students next school year however, this letter has brought more questions than answers. It does not address the fate of Kennedy students or the potential plans for the middle school or the other 3 elementary schools. I am also am aware a work session has been scheduled to discuss Redesign for next school year. The work session is planned for April 2 at 2:00pm. This doesn’t seem like a favorable time for most working adults or students who would want to attend. The actions of the majority of the school board and the upper administration are clearly speaking louder than the few words they have uttered. As I have stated before, I think it’s time for a change to the school board of USD 353. I hope if you agree with me you will take action and attend the upcoming school board meetings and work session.  After all, shouldn’t we hold our school leaders to the same principles we are trying to model for our students?

Linda Ledesma