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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Letter: What was the hurry with West decision?

  • To the editor:
    With the closing of West Intermediate School, our children's future educational opportunities are dimmer. Why do people we've elected refuse to work for our best interests?
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  • To the editor:
    With the closing of West Intermediate School, our children's future educational opportunities are dimmer. Why do people we've elected refuse to work for our best interests?
    When I wrote to the editor a month ago, I urged Leavenworth School Board members to listen to the public. I chastised two of them for calling the West building awful. They didn't listen.
    The board hired a new superintendent and then tied his hands on the West closing.
    What an insult to him.
    He should have had the chance to observe the status quo and then render his expert input. I have friends in Clearwater who think highly of him, saying he is very frugal, but always puts kids first.
    Was that standard in play here?
    According to the Leavenworth Times, the school district has a cash reserve of $2.4 million that has not been tapped for years. Wasn't this the time to use some of it? On top of this, we have more than $3.5 million in our building fund. We could have used some of the first reserve and not cut any staff.
    Some entities tax and spend. Evidently, the school district taxes and saves.
    Most districts do not have a huge reserve, but they aren't closing any buildings, they bus their children, have high test results, pay their teachers well and lower school taxes.
    However, we have been paying our superintendent the ninth highest salary in the state. Does this make sense? Where are our priorities?
    The Times also revealed one School Board member mentioned that it would be impossible to offer physical education at Richard Warren Middle School with 200-plus more students. Another said no approved storm shelter was accessible at Warren. The administration's response was irresponsible and untruthful.
    Kudos to board members who had the courage and insight to do the right thing and listen to the public and voted to put this off.
    What was the hurry?
    Thanks to the Times for superb reporting and smart editorials on the sorry state of our school district.
    Donald  Kloepfer
    Leavenworth

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