In response to the article on the USD 309 Bond Issue:
I served on the committee that reviewed numerous options, including much more expensive options than the one ultimately chosen. We spent many hours touring our physical plants and assessing both the district’s needs and the financial impact of any bond issue. We had a series of community meetings. At every meeting, patrons, once informed, voted for a more expensive bond issue than the one chosen. Overcrowding and safety issues were only some of the critical concerns presented at these meetings.
Comments in an article in the Jan. 22 Hutchinson News regarding academics at Nickerson High School are insulting and ill-informed. The average ACT score for Nickerson students is a point higher than Hutchinson. Our graduation rate is 5 percent higher than Hutchinson. These statistics don’t take into account the number of low income and special needs students each of these districts serve. As a substitute teacher, I see teachers at all levels going above and beyond to serve the needs of all students.
USD 309 patrons need to make sure that they are fully informed regarding the district’s needs and the financial impact of any bond issue. Our goal is to provide quality education in a safe environment. We want to do this in the most economical manner possible. The affluent in The Highlands and elsewhere and the poor do not and will not carry an unfair burden. Our teachers are providing a quality education with limited and antiquated resources.
We need to show our appreciation and support for them any way we can — not just with bond issues. They are giving far more than 40 hours a week and contributing money out of their own pockets to provide for our students’ needs. They have been doing “more with less” for a very long time.