KOOSKIA – Following more than an hour in executive session Monday, Aug. 17, the Mountain View School District 244 board of trustees voted unanimously in favor of a resolution to not fund any employee dependent insurance premiums and stick with the same salary schedule and 188-day contract as the 2019-20 school year.
“Whereas a financial emergency was declared June 15,” due on part to the failure of the $3.9 million levy, “and after nine negotiation sessions with no definitive agreements,” chair Rebecca Warden read, the board imposed the above-mentioned items as well as to not fund any of the insurance buydown program.
In a separate motion, the board also voted in unanimously to adjust the district calendar and add back in the eight furlough days taken from administrative and non-certified staff at a previous board meeting.
The decisions came on the heels of superintendent Todd Fiske telling the board that “20 – no, more than 20 counting paraprofessionals and other staff,” have resigned from MVSD this school year.
He said various reason were given for the resignations; however, the reasons varied from the board taking away insurance, negotiations going awry, COVID-19 and simply deciding upon other jobs.
“There will definitely be some very difficult roles to fill – especially so close to school starting,” Fiske said. He went on to say the personal part of him understands making the best decision for one’s family, but the professional side “has a difficult time with so many resigning so close to the start of school.”
“I assume there will be more resignations after tonight,” he added.
In earlier negation meetings, Central Idaho Education Association president and Clearwater Valley High School teacher, Char McKinney, stated “There will be a mass exodus of teachers and staff if you take away family and dependent insurance, because many people simply will not be able to afford to work here.”
“These decisions are gutting the district,” McKinney shook her head following the meeting.
Additional details on the meeting will be provided in next week’s paper.