Resident supports levy but questions school leadership

| March 4, 2020 2:00 AM

In response to the recent advertisement for a new levy by the Bigfork School Board of Trustees, I respectfully disagree with their claim of “fiscal responsibility.” I find the amount of money spent on our school’s attorney and funds siphoned off to settle lawsuits unacceptable.

Last year alone taxpayers shelled out tens of thousands of dollars to settle one such lawsuit brought by the previous high school principal. In my opinion, this would not have happened had it not been for the behavior of Superintendent Matt Jensen. Furthermore, I believe our school is currently embroiled in yet another lawsuit, as evidenced by closed portions of their meetings. It’s noteworthy to mention that Mr. Jensen has seen pay increases during his tenure far above that of the teachers. All of this has had a negative impact on the school’s morale and created a deep lack of trust that no amount of money can fix. That can only be accomplished if board members stop turning a blind eye to the superintendent’s actions. That said, I fully support a levy to raise the dismally low pay for our teachers and provide much needed funds to reinstate courses cut over the past several years. This May, vote to support candidates willing and able to put the school’s staff and students first, and stop the tide of tax dollars wasted on attorneys and lawsuits.

— Wendy Miller, Bigfork