GRANGEVILLE —“I’m concerned as a parent and community member,” patron Katie Told said to the Mountain View School District 244 board at the Jan. 18 meeting.
Told used the public input session to speak to the board and administration about her love for the community, respect for the teaching staff and desire to see a reasonable levy pass this year.
Told said she and her husband, Dr. Matthew Told, have five children, two of whom have already graduated from Grangeville High School, and three currently in school in the district.
“All five have been taught and inspired by the teachers, administrators and other employees of MVSD,” she said. “We are proud to be part of this community.”
She stated there are three factors to a stable community environment: the education system, access to healthcare and available goods and services.
“And just like a fire, if any of the three components are missing, the flame dwindles and is eventually extinguished,” she emphasized. “Let’s make this community great. Let’s put away our differences … . Let’s bridge the divide and make MVSD what it used to be,”
Told called on commitment from all, including teachers, staff, administration, city leaders and community members, to set and pass a levy.
“As a board, you have a tremendous responsibility to hear the voices that are vested in this community,” she said.
Ironically, Told’s three-minute time allotment ran out and she was cut off by board chair Rebecca Warden.
“We respect and thank you for taking the time to come in tonight and speak,” Warden told her, but explained the rules state she only received three minutes to voice her thoughts.
Later that evening, Told posted the remainder of her input on Facebook, which called for running a $3.1 million levy, an amount she feels could pass.
On the Central Idaho Education Association’s (CIEA) Facebook site, which was recording the meeting (also available on Zoom), former Grangeville Elementary Middle School (GEMS) teacher Bernadette Edwards was not impressed with the board’s unwillingness to hear out Told.
“Wow. One of your biggest supporters sharing her thoughts and you cannot let her finish? How rude,” Edwards wrote in the comment section. “This is why the community will not pass the levy. Behaviors that disrespect the community. She has spent the last six years helping the schools and the district, and you won’t even let her finish.”
Told was the only person signed up for public input.
Following the meeting Told let the Free Press know she was “trying to unite and not be critical,” she said.
“There is a large group of us who are passionate,” about passing a levy, she stated.