To the editor:
As I watched the School of Innovation presentation to the Mehlville District, I was amazed.
At this time last year, the district was charging parents for bus service because we were so broke. There was a list of pending cuts put out, and some were even put into effect before the vote on Proposition R.
I served on a focus group which met with the professional hired by the Board of Education to assess the necessary cuts to be made if Prop R should fail and to recommend the tax increase amount we believed the voters would approve. At that time, I believed the board was acting in good faith, and since Prop R passed, I believe the voters thought that, too.
The slogan was “Protect Your Property Value. Restore Our Schools.” Many community members, parents and students worked very successfully to pass that tax increase for that purpose. At no time during these discussions was a Choice School of Innovation even mentioned as a possible use of this tax-increase money.
According to the presentation made to the board, this school for lottery-chosen elementary students would cost over $1 million just to begin operating. The yearly expense to operate this would be at least $600,000.
Once again, I believe that the taxpayers of Mehlville have been fooled. This money should be put to use to actually restore and improve the schools we already have, as promised. That is what we voted for and what we should expect to receive.
Editor’s note: Joann Folluo is a retired Mehlville School District teacher and a district volunteer.