I am disappointed but not surprised . . .

. . . that the Trib has chosen not to print my reply to former School Board Chair Miernicki. I’ll post that email exchange later today. For now I share the thoughts tat you will not be reading in the Trib prior to the Election:

To the Editor,

It has been a quiet year-and-a-half since my old friend Mike Miernicki stepped down off the noisy school board he chaired. His leadership in spending two hundred thousand tax payer dollars falsely accusing a colleague of racism, conflict of interest, and assault was a thinly disguised attempt to violate every teacher’s mission: encouraging students to ask questions. And such questions Art Johnston was asking: Why did the spending for “21st century” schools balloon to a half billion dollars? Why did promises of great savings lead instead to spending $11 million dollars less of local taxes in the classroom annually than just ten years before? How could laying off hundreds of teachers and swelling classrooms to 40 students be justified while 30% of its students were exiting the schools?
For Chair Miernicki, such questions called for silencing with false accusations of assault against a School Superintendent who denied it had taken place, on the word of a single witness who was later rewarded with the chairmanship herself.

With Mike’s retirement, these questions are again being addressed with few easy answers. It’s not easy to patch up a system that has cannibalized 11 million classroom dollars to repay building debt. Mr. Miernicki yearns to return to the good old days when a dictatorial majority could suppress debate by overturning the election of West Duluth voters.

Supt. Gronseth told one of this year’s candidates that, “campaigns can get ugly.” I’m just sorry the News Tribune’s editors would confirm this by printing Mr. Miernicki’s asinine letter on the Friday before the election leaving Mike’s victims almost no time to reply before votes were cast.

Harry Welty
Candidate for reelection to the Duluth School Board, At-large