Troubling statements by Aspen school board candidates

When I joined the group of parents taking on John Maloy, I was scared. There were a few sleepless nights, and an after-hours voice mail left to the managing editor of The Aspen Times where I was recorded, terrified of being quoted in the paper. With this awareness, I prepared a question for the Aspen Education Foundation’s forum with the school board candidates, and it was for Katy Frisch.

“Why did the finance committee fail to meet for the last two years, particularly with the approval of a non secured loan and a CFO who resigned under sketchy circumstances?

As the Times reported, Katy answered that “the last administration, the CFO and superintendent, basically shut it down. There was nowhere to go ….”

Nowhere to go? After such withholding of public financial information from our superintendent, there was nowhere to go? Why didn’t we hear Katy and other committee members at school board meetings, calling them out? Why didn’t Katy, for the sake of our district, work on exposing such tactics publicly?

Katy is a fantastic school board candidate at this time, but the lack of agency here is what gets me.

Another question asked, “Would you vote today to remove John Maloy?” exposed a similar ambivalence to getting at the truth. John Galambos told the room, “I wasn’t paying attention the way I should have . … I would have supported him, back then.” To this I say, he didn’t want to pay attention. Asking the hard questions of a friend and fellow community member is HARD.

Last year, according to Galambos, I was part of an angry mob of entitled parents looking for a cause. We were negative and our ways were unbecoming. Katy too said she wished we’d handled it differently, that it will make hiring a new superintendent difficult when they read about the active parents in our district.

To this I say, any talented candidate will do their research and see that we were justified. Standing up is a spontaneous, messy and risky business.

Marla Butler