ELK CITY – “I think we need to start talking about the levy,” Mountain View School District 244 Superintendent Todd Fiske told the board of trustees at the Sept. 21 meeting at Elk City School. “Together, we only have a handful of opportunities to discuss this.”
Fiske emphasized it would be “critical” to pass a levy for the 2020-21 school year and “get back on track.”
“We are setting ourselves up for failure to have 35 kids in an algebra class, to not have an assistant principal at Grangeville Elementary Middle School and to have a halftime counselor at Clearwater Valley schools,” he stated.
“We’re doing more with less and we’re hurting kids,” he said. “We need to be realistic and that includes here in Elk City – can we continue with one teacher,” for nine grades if enrollment rises, he questioned.
He said there are 530 students at GEMS and principal Adam Uptmor doesn’t have an assistant. At GHS, all classes have been pulled since teacher Patrick Phillips resigned and that position will not be replaced. CV has a part-time counselor who is housed at the high school and finds it difficult to make any time to get to the grade school.
“I don’t want to be functioning during the year while stressing what might be the next thing to go,” Fiske said. “We need to be consistent and transparent and let the voters know the needs so they can be informed. We need to set this in motion now.”
Along financial lines, business manager Becky Hogg addressed the recent financial audit saying the unassigned carryover would be $848,000, and the state funds the district receives for attendance would be about $409,000 more than budgeted.
“This will help mitigate the budget shortfall,” she said.
In other news, Fiske said he learned MVSD owns a small pie-shaped piece of property three miles outside of Kamiah which and a realtor has made an inquiry.
“I don’t know how or why we have it,” he said, but he went and looked at the area.
The board gave him the okay to work toward an appraisal and bring information to the October meeting.