Mt. Morris resident voices concern regarding closure of Pleasant View Elementary

To the Editor:

As a participant in the recent Wild Rose School Board meeting where the Board voted unanimously to close the Pleasant View Elementary School, the view from the audience section looked very different from what was reported in the Waushara Argus.

First, the set up: Public attendees were greeted with a message in the foyer saying if anyone wanted to speak at the meeting, a pre-registration sign up was required, and only three minutes per person would be allotted. Pens and paper were provided.

Upon entering the auditorium, 75 to 100 people were gathered facing a row of tables, behind which sat administrators, school board members, and the press. The “line up” filled the entire front row of the auditorium.

After initial procedural remarks, the public was “invited” to share their views, called out one by one from the pre-registration papers. About 10 to 12 public attendees spoke, all asking the board members to consider the value of keeping the school open. After 25 minutes the board closed discussion and went on to the second item on their agenda, closing the school – 2 ½ minutes later, the decision was finalized.

From my perspective, the entire meeting was a sham, a hastily orchestrated sham. The decision to close the school was already a fixed deal. The board displayed utter contempt for procedural processes, and disrespect for those who just wanted to be heard and actually listened to for the value of their input.

In the future, it would serve the community much better for the board to treat the community of parents, grandparents and teachers as mature thinking adults that want to be well-informed and are able to process economic issues with balance for social concerns.

/s/Timothy Boersma, Mt. Morris, concerned grandparent and former substitute teacher with many fond memories of teaching at Pleasant View Elementary School.