Addressing Bob Buttke’s Statement
Select here to read Bob Buttke’s original message on the VOTE YES PAC’s Facebook page from 5/13/2016.
I would like to address the statement Bob Buttke and his wife made that has been posted on the Yes 4 Corbett Kids site as “A message from one of our Board Members”.
“Now is the time to remember what we, as Board and Community members, are obligated to do for Corbett kids. We are to educate and protect them to the best of our ability, we are to use the resources available, and care for the assets of our district”.
As a Board member reaching into the past two decades, let’s take a look at the policy he should have been following all along. That would be Policy FA, Facilities Development Goals: To provide and maintain facilities…. Item 2: Meeting all safety requirements through the remodeling of older structures.
That would be an “obligation” he had as a Board member to the students, staff and community. Those responsible for the care and maintenance of our occupied school buildings have not done a good job, but he pushed for “obligating” the district to loans of $1,650,000 for an empty building.
(As he knows, I filed a Public Complaint against the Superintendent regarding his failure to address the issues on the main campus with this money, and was shut down by the Board when I attempted to present my complaint and offer a solution, even though Mr. Trani invited me to come and present my complaint at the board meeting.)
That loan could have resolved multiple issues in the Middle School and taken care of the students and staff. Including upgrading of the plumbing, heating, windows and asbestos abatement.
“Obligation” to our Corbett kids is a very good idea however, our current district population is almost 50% out of area, and while some may say we need to educate “all” students regardless of where they live, it is not reality that a small tax base provide for educational space beyond what is fiscally reasonable for a district of our size.
If the Yes for Corbett Kids flyers give “all the facts available”, then we have a terrible problem. Members of the PAC putting out the Yes flyers have admitted their information is not fact, but is based on estimates and assumptions of an unnamed contractor regarding what a building is expected to cost, and where money is going to be spent.
A detailed list of what projects are going to be done, what building they will be done in, and what the cost for these projects will be has not been provided by the Board, and Director Vo specifically states in official board minutes that you are only voting on the dollar amount, not the projects. I stand by our statement.
SOS signs say “Stop the Growth”, period. The comment that the Board has reduced student count for the last two years and will continue to decrease it this coming year is incorrect. The enrollment for this year is 1,239, the requested enrollment for next year is 1,266 with an addition of up to 100 on line. (Official board minutes 2/17/2016 on resolution 2.116-16a) If those numbers get filled that will be the highest number of students the District has been responsible for in our history. Yes, we are responsible for them as on-line students.
Regardless of how you want to look at this, the growth has come from an artificial inflation of our enrollment numbers and the overcrowding is already accomplished. SOS is saying “Stop the Growth”, there is no way that statement can be outdated or leave out facts, I stand by our statement.
The bond does expand the district because you are expanding the square footage. How can it be viewed any other way? When you go in for a building permit you don’t get to say “I’m not expanding my house because I’ll have the same number of rooms”, if you’re increasing the size of your rooms your house is expanded because you are adding square footage. Again, I stand by our statement.
As to the National average on square feet per student, would Bob please cite his source? It keeps being put out as “fact”, but no one I know has ever seen this National Average document.
(Keep in mind that before the Administration and Board decided to bring in all these students, they had the square footage per student that is now being used as a reason to expand the district. Interesting that the students at Springdale don’t get the same concern shown them with the square footage.)
This isn’t about calling people “reasonable” (which shoots down the sentence just above their comment about putting aside character issues), its about trying to do what is right not just for the “school community” but the entire “Corbett community”.
Sometimes to do this you have to vote “No”.
Save Our Schools (Corbett SOS)