Changes needed from ConVal Board
To the editor:
In a 6 to 5 vote on April 1, the members of the ConVal School Board re-elected Butch Estey as this year’s chairman. My last letter to the editor called for a change in leadership. This board chose not to change their leader, so I challenge the newly re-elected chairman, “to be the change” himself and he can do this by leading by example.
Mahatma Gandhi has said, “If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him.... We need not wait to see what others do.”
Our school district, which includes all the citizens of the member communities — and not just its students, their parents, teachers and employees — are facing difficult social and economic changes. Realities of declining student enrollments, an aging population on a fixed income, and no new or expanding industries with jobs that might attract young families to our region — at least not in the foreseeable future — can no longer be reasonably denied by the board. I heard the spin again as I listened to the board discuss the low kindergarten enrollments to-date, for next year. School enrollment trends in our district have consistently showed a slow decline, so accept this fact and plan accordingly.
The first change I urge Estey to make was demonstrated by Zach Letourneau. Despite the fact that his back was to the public as he addressed the board, Letourneau spoke in a loud, strong and confident voice, such that those of us behind him heard him very clearly. He didn’t need a microphone. This is in stark contrast to the board members, however. Few people can even hear what they say, as they speak in a whispering tone. Even when asked to repeat themselves so others can hear them, it isn’t much better.
So please, speak up and be heard.