School board election is extremely important

School board election is extremely important

By Carol D. Bell

School board election is extremely important

In reading the most recent guest editorial in The Rock River Times, I find that the distortions, finger pointing and misinformation on behalf of the R.E.A.CH. leader continues.

It is blatantly obvious that Barb Dent’s intentions are to paint the picture that only R.E.A.CH. affiliates are financial fiscal conservatives. In order to accomplish this goal, she selectively places board members into years of service, which she portrays as deficit spending periods (i.e., Carol Bell, 1993-1997). Then she places those who share her philosophical bent, in years of service that she portrays as years of tax savings and fiscal responsibility (i.e., Bill Neblock and David Strommer, 1997-2001). The record will reflect that the three named individuals served on the board from 1995 to 1999.

This is not atypical of the fuzzy math and distorted road map presented to this community by individuals who have neither the survival of the Rockford School District nor the best interest of all students as a primary focus.

Financial crisis is no stranger to the Rockford School District, from failed financial investments in California banks in the 1970s, depletion of the Working Cash Fund in the early 1980s to give the appearance of financial stability, to the 1990’s loss of tort funding without a sufficient backup plan.

It is no secret that the R.E.A.CH. group has been working vigorously for many years to remove the Tort Fund as well as denounce the court findings. The secret for some Rockford community members is that there continue to be those who will not learn from history; therefore, they are prone to make the same mistakes of the past. The secret for some Rockford community members is that there continue to be Rockford School Board members who believe that tort funding only aided “those people,” and they have no qualms about articulating how they are not going to support those “lazy, liberal carpetbaggers.”

If education and the stability of this community had been a priority, instead of wasting time celebrating loss of the Tort Fund, it appears to me that Dent and Company would have immediately divulged their action plan to guarantee continued funding for the Rockford School District.

The greatest tragedy of all is that the educational process and children suffer, when adults fail to establish strategic plans that keep education as a primary focus. The fact remains that there have been several opportunities offered that would have allowed the Rockford School District to develop its own action plan to prevent this present crisis. There have been missed opportunities to stop the distortions, stop the finger pointing, and stop the misinformation being disseminated in this District, but it hasn’t happened.

Perhaps the time has come for this District to address the findings of the CRO, and develop an acceptable plan of action that assures the court and provides specific assurances to the plaintiff class that they will never again receive an inferior education. Perhaps the time has come to support implementation of a sound educational program. The present state of affairs shows us that development of a viable long-term financial plan is long overdue.

May the Rockford community BEWARE of those who profess to have all of the answers!!!

Barb Dent and I agree on only one thing.

The upcoming School Board election is very important to the survival of the Rockford School District and this entire community.

Carol D. Bell was a former Rockford School District Board member (1995-1999).

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