Speak out blogs

Blogs home baldwin boycott blogs

Lies and the Lying Liar School Board Members that Tell Them

Ande Parks:

"People were worried that when they saw we were wanting to build a new primary center that we might be pulling the country kids into town," Parks said. "It's quite the opposite. We're building this facility in Baldwin to house our in-town kids and all of our pre-K students. We're not going to have room to house either of the rural schools. This is more of a commitment to those schools."

September 21, 2010

baldwin boycott blogs

Comments

thunder 4 years, 2 months ago

Stunning! Unbelievable! Umm, not.

0

BigCat 4 years, 2 months ago

Don't forget the flyer that they sent home with the kids saying that by building the PC that they rural schools will stay open!

0

Bloggerboo 4 years, 2 months ago

Maybe that is why Ande Parks is one of the few who doesn't appear to be behind this recent push by Mr. Dorathy? Ever thought of that?

0

Bloggerboo 4 years, 2 months ago

He is only 1 of 7 after all, yet you call him out like he has had this super secret nefarious plan to screw everyone. He stands to gain nothing from this, doesn't get paid for the work he does, and if you have ever spoken with the man you'd know he isn't the type to outright lie. Conditions would have to have seriously changed for him to do a 180, but I am not seeing any quotes from him where he suddenly likes this idea. If fact, his thoughtful quotes make him appear to be only regrettably resigned to this, not actually in favor of it at all.

0

andeparks 4 years, 2 months ago

I try not to get into debates with anonymous message board posters. Since this post calls me out specifically, though, I will attempt to make my record clear on this issue.

During the bond process, I said that the bond and the long range plan that went with it represented a commitment to the rural schools. That was true. I also said, at every opportunity, that if the state cut the district by a million dollars, everything had to be on the table. Not all quotes make the paper.

Now, a few years later, the bond has passed and the state has indeed cut the district more than a million dollars.

My children attended the Marion Springs four year old program. I know that the rural schools do a great job. I know what a special atmosphere we have in those buildings. I have not supported closing any building in the past. I did not support closing one in May, when there was a lot of pressure to do so. When the state surprised us all by holding the district budget flat by raising the sales tax, I was not willing to fire teachers and increase class sizes. I was very public about my reasoning, and I took a lot of heat for it.

Now that we know more about the future of state revenues and the district's financial prospects, I think we have to consider all options, including close buildings. It's not what I would like to do. It's not ideal. As I said at our last meeting, I have real concerns about class space in our in-town buildings. We are past the point, though, of doing only things that are ideal. We have made a lot of sacrifices, in staff and in programs. I'm not sure we can cut any more without looking at the option of closing facilities.

I have not made up my mind on this. We have a process in place. I encourage all concerned patrons to go the usd348.com or contact the district office to find out meeting times. I plan on listening to and considering a lot of public input in the upcoming months as we decide how to move forward. None of this is easy. There are no perfect solutions to the financial problems we face. I can only do what I have always tried to do as a board member: cast the vote that I honestly believe is best for the overall educational experience of the children in our district.

If you want to call me a liar, question my commitment to the education of the children of USD #348, or just ask me a question about where I stand, give me a call or shoot me an e-mail. Harder, maybe, than posting anonymous attacks online, but more rewarding if you're genuinely interested in these issues.

Ande Parks Board Member, USD #348 aparks@usd348.com 594-3292

0

BigCat 4 years, 2 months ago

Ande, I applaud you. You are one of the few on the board who has the guts to stand up to pressure. Please help remind the board that this supposed $400K in savings by closing both schools is the HIGH estimate. The low end is $190K, the board seems to have forgotten this.

Also, why if the schools are closed does it need to be spent (directed at Scott)? Why not hold it for next year when the budget gets cut again? Because if you close the schools and spend the money, what will you have to do next year when the budget is cut again? Just thinking out load. I would like to meet or talk with you about this issue if you are willing.

0

greyghost 4 years, 2 months ago

Ande:

This quote, from you, really stuck out to me. Your name is in front of the quotation, but your use of the first person plural "we" makes it seem like you were talking for the district leadership as a whole. The district sent the flier home with all kids, saying the exact same thing. You sold the idea well. You even sent fliers out with four-year-old kids, hoping to "sell" it to their parents. They bought it. You got what you wanted. The ball fields are built, the auditorium is going up, the new PC is up and functional. Now you all are going back on a promise you made less than two years ago. Does that seem right? Honestly? Remember that 55% of the district tax income comes from the rural patrons. Now does it seem right?

Oh, okay, it's out of your control. Whatever. The housing market collapsed and the economy was tanking in 2007. By November 2008 the district electorate went ahead with this bond -- because we ALL want the best for our kids -- many of us who went with it, voted for it ONLY for the commitment made from the board and superintendent to the rural schools. How do you think this sits with people when they cast their votes for fraudulent proposals? You may as well have burned my ballot once it made it in the machine.

The whole district leadership made a commitment to the district taxpayers and is now backing out. You're all liars. It would be nice to hear you admit it.

0

501gdm2 4 years, 1 month ago

Maby you should have considered what is really needed instead of what was wanted! Live within your means and then the cuts by the state could have been handled better. The local school board is like our federal goverment (Out of Control on spending)

0

TheOnlyGreyghost 4 years, 2 months ago

Ande~ Anyone who knows you or has paid attention over the years is aware of your integrity and commitment to the children of USD 348. You guys have a tough job and must make do under deteriorating circumstances and with the criticism of armchair quarterbacks who learn just enough through the grapevine to think they are experts on educational issues.

I agree with your comments on the high quality of the rural schools and resulting reluctance to close them. I don't have a pony in this race at this point, but I'd still be sorry to see such closure. Knowing, however, that you avoided doing so for as long as possible and that it wasn't done without a lot of agonizing would make it easier if it has to happen. I think that in the long run the district will need those facilities and that (if one or both are closed now) overcrowding at the in-town primaries will force them to reopen within a few years. We shall see, I guess.

Meantime, don't let people like fakeghost get under your skin. Weasels who are so petty as to steal a long-time poster's blogger name when the LJW (stupidly) reboots their program (or whatever they did that wiped out SpeakOut's history & registrations) obviously has no integrity or sense of honesty, so it's a total joke that he would call you a liar. You're doing a fine job and so many of us appreciate the thoughtfulness and intelligence you bring to the board.

0

Torch 4 years, 1 month ago

" I don't have a pony in this race at this point, but I'd still be sorry to see such closure."

Yes you do...it's your money supporting them. The longer it continues the higher your taxes will be.

You may not care, but you do have a pony in the race.

0

greyghost 4 years, 2 months ago

Only, you're just as anonymous as I am. So, Ande probably doesn't want to have a conversation with you, either, based on that fact.

BTW, where have you been? I thought I had run you off.........

0

TheOnlyGreyghost 4 years, 2 months ago

Ande knows and respects me in real life--that's enough. I don't blame Ande for wariness toward anonymous posters; as you aptly demonstrate, some are simply hiding (though most at least have the cojones to hide behind their OWN original posting name) because they are ashamed of their own comments.

Other advocates of anonymity have more complex reasons for wishing to remain anonymous and I would hope that public officials would assess each posted comment on its own merit. There are many valid reasons for choosing to post anonymously.

An obvious example: John Doe, a local professional, realizes that he's one of a very few Jayhawks in a predominantly Mizzou community. Not wishing to alienate clients (and court bankruptcy), he is very professional and doesn't discuss the rivalry in the office and around town. Going online anonymously, he can say whatever he thinks about Mizzou, gloat when KU is riding high, and know that he won't be losing clientele--his online persona, while representing his true feelings, will not be linked to his "professional face" or cause negative impact to his business.

It should be obvious to anyone that giving one's real name on a forum such as this forces people to be as circumspect here as they are in real life or face offending (and perhaps losing) customers, employees, bosses, neighborhood friendships, or even voters, if the person has a political life. If someone is good with that, fine. I'm not going to fault them for using their real name here.

But I will assert that the thoughts of those who come up with ORIGINAL posting names and whose comments to elected officials are presented with thought and logic (as opposed to infantile accusations and baiting) should be taken seriously, as many have good reasons to shield their private lives and identities.

And don't get your hopes up, faker--honest people will never be driven away by ethically challenged posers. What a pathetic joke that a creatively bankrupt gasbag would think that he wields such power over someone he stole from. Thievery of property (whether physical or intellectual) makes the thief weaker, not stronger.

0

lisagaylesmith 4 years, 2 months ago

I think Ande is right about anonymous posters. I can never figure out why people would pay attention to anyone that won't sign their name to their post.

Ande, The point you made in your statement about building a new school in town still rings true. There is NOT enough room to house all the students comfortably. The comment you made at the last board meeting about being uncomfortable putting all the K thru 3 kids into rooms that were not designed for them was encouraging to me. You were so careful to design the buildng to fit students into pods. It is a shame to close two buildings and destroy that.

You say the board has made all the other cuts they can make. Have you considered closing the building that house the district offices and use the new building for what it is intended for INSTEAD of closing the rural buildings? Or at least one of them? If VES closes, maybe some of us would drive our kids out to MSE instead of in to town. Another question I really want answered is this: Do you forsee the third graders ever getting out of the PC and moving back to the IC? If so, how? There will only be two empty rooms right? The PC teachers seem to think the third graders will only be at the new building for two years so you can get the extra state money. The reading room and the other room that were never intended to be classrooms will be classrooms forever, Correct? Or will the third grade be split into two buildings?

Ruth Barkley has asked Mr. Dorathy repeatedly to contact the intermodal and have a representative come to a board meeting. Why hasn't that happened yet?

I could find a few more cuts before closing schools. Why can't the IC and the PC share a principal like VES and MSE do? Why do you allow the coaches and Scott to continue to make sports a priority instead of the quality of education? You are charged with providing a free and appropriate education, not after-school activities.

Closing the buildings is a long-term solution to a short-term problem. The economy will recover. If we start kids out in town and then two or three years later decide to open a rural school back up and you do not enforce the boundries then you will have another set of problems. We will have modular units sitting outside the new buildings. I think we should name the first one "Laurisden's modular" since he does like to name facilities.

I know there are RIF meetings already and I know that Mr. Dorathy has said that you must give the public a time to speak as part of the legal process before you close the buildings. It is discouraging to us to see the board acting as if the vote has already been cast. I am very glad to hear you are still undecided. Three no votes would be better than two when the votes are cast.

Lisa Smith

0

Bloggerboo 4 years, 2 months ago

Wake up, Lisa. Ande is just one of seven people. You act as if he has all the control. Also, three no votes still gets you where you don't want to be. How is that any better?

I understand your sentiment, but you need to face reality.

0

Chicramblings 4 years, 2 months ago

Bloggerboo, maybe you are the one that needs to wake up and try to fully understand the ramnifications of the decision to close two schools. You can't just look at year 1 or 2, step back and scope in a few years down the road and see if you like where it is leading. The current $2.5m/year in bond payments will be doubled based on these decisions and our district will be holding 2 vacant rural buildings and a large three story building in town that is heated, cooled and serviced to only hold the district offices...Yeah, I really think we should do this. You might as well as vote on the next bond right now too because that is what you will get. Gosh, think of what we could do with the $2.5m in debt and debt service we spend every year? Or even if we could have half of the amount. And you know, if the economy is so bad, then why did the average expenditures per student increase by $530 for the current school year? Oh yeah, because our debt costs went up by $700,000. Amazing what is going on when our enrollment levels are the same as pre-recession levels ('06-'07) which by everyone accounts was a "boon" time. Hmm, it is not having 4 elementary schools that is causing us issues and draining the bank accounts, it is the lack of planning and management of resources.

0

Bloggerboo 4 years, 2 months ago

Chic,

I have never disagreed with this statement: "it is the lack of planning and management of resources". So, I believe I am as awake as you are. However, my comments to Lisa were about her apparent misunderstanding of what exactly one board member can do. Not to mention, she appears to be preaching to the choir by begging Mr. Parks to take care of things.

I am aware of the financial ramifications, but the district needs to cut expenditures, according to the BoE and Dorathy. One immediate option with the potential to save close to half a million dollars is on the table for them. You have better suggestions, or some better way for them to get funds to pay for everything, I'm sure they would love a call from you.

0

Chicramblings 4 years, 2 months ago

Bloggerboo - why does the district "need to cut expenditures"? Please don't smirk when I ask, because the last Board meeting made it look like any savings were going to immediately be spent on the "wishlist" of items. So, we are going to "cut expenditures" just to spend it on other areas in the School District? Then, we didn't really cut anything did we? We just rearranged or re-prioritized where the money goes. If that is not what Dorathy and BoE mean to do, then they need some help in communicating. Just a few further thoughts on the projection of funding for school year 2011-12. State tax revenues are $38m ahead of projections at the end of September. Additionally, the State has said they do not foresee any budget cuts for this school year. Now, even at the current sluggish rate of economic growth as well as the pending school funding lawsuit that may get dropped on the State, what is the possibility of State funding cuts in 2011-12?

Finally, please take a look at the reference to the half of million dollars. If you look at everything in the simplistic Fact Finding Committee Report, the savings range is $193,000 to $400,000. If you analyze the numbers, you can start to point out other benefits and expenses that will come out of this decision. It is wise and prudent not to consider this move as putting half a million dollars in the School Districts pocket, it will be much less. Furthermore, is saving some funds for a few years when the District then reaches capacity at the IC and PC the best long-term decision? Because in 4 years the community will be facing another bond vote to expand capacity at the IC and PC. This bond price tag will more than outweigh the savings generated in the short-term. But if everyone is comfortable with debt costs being the 2nd largest expenditure in the school district's budget, then please go ahead and support this move. And, keeping the rural schools mothballed as an option to reopen is great marketing verbage, but it doesn't really fly well in the face of history that shows hundreds of towns closing schools, that never reopen. Sorry to be such a cynic on the last part. I try to believe the best in everyone, but some of this decision is not quite ringing authentic to me.

0

Bloggerboo 4 years, 2 months ago

Well, Chic, I guess you are a financial and planning wizard. Like I said before, if you know better than Dorathy, the BoE, and their hired financial advisers, please call them. They could use the help.

0

BaldwinDad 4 years, 2 months ago

Once again Bloggerboo when faced with intelligent well reasoned questions to your constant chat of "close those schools", you resort to your a poo poo head mentality of a four year old.

Chic is absolutely right about what he posted. I for one do not trust the BOE, the Administration or their hired financial advisers since it seems to me that the strategic vision to quote another article, that they came up with three years ago has proven so inadequate. Perhaps we can get a refund on those financial planners Bloggerboo??

0

Chicramblings 4 years, 2 months ago

Bloggerboo, not a wizard by any means or I would know how to invest in this economy! In all honesty though, taxpayers and the community need to look at the FACTS in this situation and understand the impact short-term and long-term. Sorry for being a broken record on this subject, but as I have paid more attention to it, we do have a lot of individuals dealing in the emotions of the topic, which is understandable, and as many others have pointed out on related blogs, we have lots of people using pieces of facts to sway or incite others. I just want to understand the analysis and facts of why this is or is not the best move right now for USD 348 and its taxpayers. Maybe my expectations are too high that there would be plain speaking and clear number crunching by someone that gives the short-term and long-term impact/plan?

0

hipgrrrrl 4 years, 2 months ago

Interestingly enough, if one would do some digging in the BC Signal archives, one can see that in 2000, 2003, 2005, 2008, 2009 and now in 2010, there has been a small and extremely vocal, pushy, offensive and condescending group of people who think that MS and VES should be closed. This is not a new fight and utilizing recently made up data as presented by the school board (as opposed to previously made up data presented to the school board) is not more sensible now than it was then. I'm guessing Blog was heavily involved in the previous attempts made to close the mentioned schools. Of course, at the time, the reasons were probably different. I mean, this time around, my kid truly struggling in school due to larger class sizes can't possibly compare to the inconvenience suffered by Blog's child when the trimmed budget created a situation where s/he had to sit around on the bus waiting for their optional athletic event to take place.

My suggestion to posters is to ignore the bully in the room. When someone can't even respond to well-articulated points and questions presented except by being snarky, why bother to interact with them? Of course, my mother always told me it was wiser to stand up to a bully than simply ignore one.

The greatest fool is he who thinks he is not one and all others are. ~ Baltasar Gracián

0

Taxpayer 4 years, 2 months ago

What is the plan and the cost to address the over capacity in the PC and IC in the 2012/13 school year (info in the fact finding report)? The BOD will vote after schools are closed on teacher positions. So no guarantees of any of the savings that the fact finding report lists under teacher salaries will materialize.

0

Commenting has been disabled for this item.