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School board not listening

Dear Editor:Mike Bair, president of the [Re-1 district] school board, stated in the paper last week that, “It’s really important that instead of criticizing the schools, we need to be involved in our schools.” Concerned parents tried to be involved last year at Bridges High School. Meetings were held between the principal, students and parents. Letters were written. A parent group was formed. We got a meeting set up with Dr. Wall and Mrs. Haptonstall. Board members were called by parents and asked to come to the meeting. My understanding is not one parent got a return call.Where was the board last year when all those “concerned, involved parents” were asking for them? Why do any of the board members feel that they have a right to criticize a concerned, involved parent before looking at their own actions? Mrs. Bair, principal of Bridges High School, not only didn’t go through a hiring process that involved the public for the principal’s job at Bridges, but she didn’t have to interview for the job she held at Carbondale Middle School. It is also my understanding that Mrs. Haptonstall and Mrs. Bair have a close relationship. I find it hard to believe that Mr. Bair’s position has no influence over his wife’s positions or vice versa. I also agree that Mr. Bair should recuse himself from the hiring process of the new superintendent. In fact, I feel very strongly that it is a conflict of interest for him to be on the board at all.If the board is listening and works for the public, then shouldn’t all of us “loud, vocal people” have a right to “try and influence the process”? Didn’t we elect these people to listen to our concerns? I did not feel that I or the other parents of Bridges were listened to last year. I felt intimidated, bullied and pacified. The board might go back and read the “administration goals” on the Roaring Fork School District website. It’s under the “Policies and Procedures, Section C – Administration.”When did the power of the people get shifted to the power of the administration? Because that’s what it feels like. Our district wants and needs a change. Is the board listening?Tammy PraetoriusGlenwood Springs


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