The Brainerd School Board's Facility Committee meeting on Monday was a disappointment. For the entire board to not recommend re-opening Whittier Elementary School next fall without having the specific documentation on the costs of running the school was not in the best interest of the public. How can the board make a decision without accurate data? With a number of concerned citizens attending the meeting, could the chair have opened the meeting for some public comment?
The Brainerd Neighborhood Schools Coalition has been requesting accurate data on Whittier School from the district office for months without success. The public should be able to see the supporting documentation on the numbers they used to justify closing the school and specific data on the true costs of using it as an elementary school in the future. We are not asking the board to spend money for a select group of students; we are asking that the board have all the information in front of them in order to give a fair and open assessment on decisions that affect our entire district.
The Facility Committee's recommendation is untimely. Before decisions are made on our facilities, we should first know what our needs are. The Long-Range Planning and Finance Committee should have been looking at the elementary school issues months ago. Our elementary schools are facing many issues with over-crowding and large class sizes. Before we re-purpose an elementary school our board should have a clear long range vision and the community should be a part of the plan.
At Monday's school board meeting, our board members need to table their decision regarding Whittier Elementary School until they have accurate data to make an informed decision.
Brainerd Neighborhood Schools Coalition
Community forum on poverty
On Tuesday from 5 to 8:15 p.m. at the Central Lakes College cafeteria in Brainerd, there will be a community forum to discuss the issue of poverty in Crow Wing County. A light meal will be served and some door prizes are available.
We will be hearing from a panel on what resources and challenges currently exist across a number of systems. However, more importantly, we want to hear from the citizens of Crow Wing County on what they think we are doing well and what needs improvement as more and more people face job loss, high costs of living, and struggle to make ends meet. This comes at a time when government is cutting back due to budget shortfalls. There will never be enough governmental resources to meet all of our neighbors needs, so how can a community come together to focus on things that we can do as persons affected by poverty and as good neighbors to address poverty and its impact.
We hope many of you come to share your insights and a willingness to serve.
Instructor says 'Slow down'
Hi. My name is Sondra Dircks, owner of the Brainerd Driving School. I am writing this because I am concerned of everyone driving on the fringe of out of control. We tell our new, inexperienced drivers to slow down and increase your following distance. OK. That's very important but if most drivers are driving on the fringe any action or one to two miles an hour more and bam, you are out of control.
Due to our slippery roads everyone should be decreasing their speed and increasing their following distance. Experienced or not, slippery is slippery. You have no control (steering, braking or acceleration) on ice.
Keep our roads safer. Leave earlier and slow down and back off. Good habits save lives.
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