Letter - Don’t blame Miller; people voted their own minds

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The editorial in Wednesday’s Union-Bulletin concluded with this concerning Mick Miller resigning his superintendent’s job and taking another job in Spokane:

“The last Wa-Hi bond failure did stain the school district. Miller’s resignation provides a great opportunity to do some necessary cleanup.”

Oh, please!

Give the voters of Walla Walla some credit in the outcome of the bond measure. I was passionately for its passage, and many people wrote in with their passion for the bond passing for the sake of quality education for our kids.

The superintendent may give the facts ’til his face turns blue about the benefits of the bond passing, but in this time of “don’t you dare raise my taxes,” despite steadily increasing costs and it being time for brand-new construction, some of the voters will vote it down, and be very vocal against it.

Don’t blame him, and don’t say the school district is “stained” because people voted their own minds.

It is doubtful a new face in itself will turn the tide. Of course, the voter is weary of the flood of advertisements on television, radio and in the mail (my pet peeve) if we are already informed and have our minds made up.

Sharon K. Schiller

Walla Walla

Comments

Myinput 6 months, 2 weeks ago

I agree, don't blame Mick Miller!!!

Who should be blamed is the WWSD Board. If they would just listen and give the bond a rest they might have a chance of passing it. Walla Walla has grown weary of them asking the same thing over-and-over again. They think if they just put a new spin the bond that Walla Walla will all buy into it. That is not working - clearly!!! Instead, they need to listen. They are not. I do think Walla Walla will pass a bond for a new Wa-Hi, however, it won't be anytime soon. As for putting the blame on Mick and thinking a new Super Intendent will ensure the passage of a bond, then they are mistaken. The only way this bond will pass is if they give it a rest and get the costs down to a reasonable level. The WWSD Board needed someone to blame for the bond not passing, so they are laying it off on Mick. Good for Mick for seeing the writing on the wall and finding a new job.

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fatherof5 6 months, 2 weeks ago

You write that "Walla Walla has grown weary of them asking the same thing over and over again."

In 2006, the district asked for bond money to completely rebuild Wa-Hi into a single-building fortress. It failed.

The district then waited seven years, gathering input along the way, and put together a completely new, comprehensive package to remodel or redesign much of the campus at record low interest rates. That bond would have served 50% more kids than the entire CP school district and done so at 1/4 the cost per household as CP. It failed.

The 'no' voters said it was too large and didn't focus on the greatest needs. The district listened to that input. (It was exactly the kind of thing you and others were saying here online.) So the district ran a vastly reduced bond proposal at 1/6 the total project cost that would have addressed the greatest need, science, as identified by the Facilities Task Force. The cost of this building seemed high to many on a per-classroom basis, but science rooms aren't cheap, and it was consistent with the cost of other school building projects around the state. (Remodeling the science building was a reasonable alternative, but it would have cost more.) The bond stated that any excess funds would be used to pay down the bond.

So, I have to disagree strenuously with your characterization the district has asked the "same thing over and over again." It has not done this ever. Instead, it has tried three very different approaches to try to get the community to step up to support its high school kids. I think Mr. Miller has done an admirable job promoting the bonds, but there are apparently some obstacles in this community that I don't fully understand that are hard to overcome.

The next bond will almost certainly be run in 2018 after the Edison bond is retired. (My youngest kids graduate in 2020, but I'll still support it.) There will be a new superintendent and probably some new board members. There are a lot of improvements needed at Wa-Hi. I hope the community will be ready by then to support the proposed fixes.

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Myinput 6 months, 1 week ago

"Strenuously" disagree - LOL. Don't hurt yourself.

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wallyworldguy 6 months, 2 weeks ago

two things here, first,the bond failed because people felt it wasn't worth the money they were asking. Mick Miller did everything he could to promote the bond which is what he should have done. It didn't fail because of anything he said or did or didn't do. second, the bond passing or failing has nothing to do with Mick Miller taking the job up by Spokane. Mick Miller is looking out for Mick Miller he took the job up there because that's what he wanted to do probably more money etc. etc. Mr. Miller may have been an excellent superintendent. Don't know why he feels he has to make it sound like he's taken this other job so that we'll have a better chance upon passage or that he somehow let us down.

As I said before, Mick is watching out for Mick, and there's nothing wrong with that

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