“It hit me”

A couple days ago my school board member, the peppy Judy Seliga-Punyko, wrote enthusiastically about the construction of the Red Plan. She began:

“I attended the open house this week at Old Central High School, at which local contractors met with architects to receive information to help them prepare bids for more than $270 million of projects under the district’s long-range facilities plan (“Contractors eager for school projects,” Jan. 22).

The room was standing-room-only. More than 300 people brimmed with positive energy and hope as architects went over schematics and described needed work. Repeatedly, I heard people talk about how welcome the work will be during these tough economic times. These local, well-paying jobs will provide a huge economic boost to our region.

It hit me, and not for the first time, that we with the Duluth school district are providing something good for the community and our children, both immediately and for decades to come.”

This sunny description is in marked contrast to this passage from the story covering Monday’s school board meeting:

“Board members seemed discouraged as administrators rattled off the list of cuts. At one point member Judy Seliga Punyko put her head in her hands “

It was only last month that Judy voted to borrow $5 million from the operations budget to spend on her marvelous construction.

The District is doing everything it can to gin up public enthusiasm for their Trojan horse. I’ve been told that the huge throng of contractors was brimming over with small fry contractors who could never post the kind of bonds required of such a project. They may have oohed and ahhed on cue for the puppet masters but many, if not most of them, will never get a piece of the action.

And one more little detail from the Monday meeting. Judy is reported to have brightened and bubbled about how nice it would be to have a four day school week. Why the McCray, Minnesoto Schools have one and people love it. Tim Grover was having none of it. He made it clear he wanted any happy talk about a four-day week to come to an end.