On the “Red Plan Plus” side

I was asked about “Red Plan Plus” at church yesterday by some parishioners who wondered where these folks were during the election. The proposal to keep Central around does have the appearance of being too little too late but that’s not really true. We can spend $45 million on a new western middle school (that can begin accumulating garbage under its bleachers immediately) or we can save the money by keeping one middle school in the center of town. Having a Central High Middle School might come in handy when UMD buys Woodland Middle School to expand. Not spending this money would help pay for ongoing maintenance which was not included in the Red Plan budget.

To alter our course one of Dr. Dixon’s school board supporters would have to change sides. Folks are putting pressure on Tim Grover and he must have winced when this letter made the Saturday Trib:

Everyone should look up and read the pre-election questionnaire Duluth School Board member Tim Grover filled out, and which was published in the News Tribune on Oct. 28, 2007. His responses then versus his actions now are inexcusable.

“I voted ‘no’ on the red plan because it is too costly and leaves the 3rd District with almost no school (and no high school),” he responded. “The red plan would create an educational void in the center of the city. The plan severely limits reasonable access to public education for this area. I believe that Duluth’s geography virtually requires us to keep three high schools, which we have now and which works well.”

Red plan supporters continually argue the public doesn’t need a vote because we get to vote for our representatives on the School Board. What happens when it seems that a representative completely misrepresents his intentions in order to get elected? Or who seems to abandon all promises as soon as he’s sworn in?

Grover’s loyalty should be to his constituents. If it wasn’t for his betrayal, those who wanted a more-sensible plan for the Duluth school district would now have a majority vote on the board.

Whether you live in the 3rd District, Grover’s vote affects you and your kids. Write to the Duluth school district. Letters will be counted, and if enough people write, Grover will have to listen.

Loren Martell

The Teacher’s Union is belatedly sticking up for Central so long as it doesn’t lead to 7-12 schools that would potentially undermine the long move to institute poorly funded “middle schools” in the Duluth Schools.

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