Union leader, not teachers, disrupted board meeting

I am writing to correct the portrayal of the Del Norte County Board of Education in Feb. 10's andquot;About to sail andamp; dragging anchor.andquot; At the board meeting on Feb. 8, the teachers comported themselves with respect and dignity. They wore black shirts with signs on the front and the back. Their presence was definitely noticed and felt. They stood in the room quietly, and when they exited they went quietly. In no way did their behavior seem rude to any school board members.

The rude behavior was the disruptive voice of a single individual. Although he had a spot on the agenda when he was scheduled to make a presentation to the board, he chose instead to disrupt the orderly proceedings by stepping to the front out of turn, forcing several others who were scheduled to speak next to wait until he was finished. He spoke discourteously and loudly, and he ignored the instructions of the board president who is charged with running the meeting according to the agenda.He was gaveled twice before he turned and shouted instructions to the teachers to andquot;Walk!andquot;

The teachers have indicated to him and some also to several of us privately - that his behavior was not representative of them.

If the teachers association were being ignored, if the management team was refusing to meet with them and if the board was not allowing them to speak, both in a regularly scheduled agenda item and during the public presentation period of the board meeting, then there would be cause, perhaps, for the rude disruption of the union leader. Those are not the current circumstances.

Faith Crist

Del Norte County Board of Education

Crescent City


Reaction again shows district doesn't respect its teachers

Thank you for recognizing the true intent of the teacher gathering at the school board meeting (andquot;About to sail andamp; dragging anchor,andquot; Feb. 10)Many of us were sad and sick because of the confrontive nature of the reaction to our demonstration. There are also those of us that were happy to at least get a response to yet another attempt on our part to be heard.

Teaching is a strenuous and consuming profession. Most of us become teachers because it is a calling. We put our hearts and souls into doing the best job that we can. We are asked to take on more responsibilities every year, and children seem to need more and more of our personal time and care as well. Teaching is a job that we carry with us all the time. We do not put down our burdens at the end of the day.We wake up at night thinking about our students. Our minds wander back to them and their needs throughout the day. We are constantly working, whether by deed or by thought.

The simple truth here is that our salaries no longer keep up with the cost of living. We are not asking for a raise. We are asking for an increase to offset the existing economic reality of higher prices.

While I am profoundly proud to be a part of the teaching community, I am deeply sad and genuinely weary of the constant need to ask for fair compensation and respect from this district.

Hollie McKinney

Crescent City



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