Manatee County schools superintendent wrong on number of issues

May 12, 2014 

Manatee School for the Arts' three-story addition provides 45,000 square feet of classroom, lab and storage space.PAUL VIDELA/Bradenton Herald

PAUL VIDELA — Paul Videla

With Russian troops on Ukraine's border and Syria in flames, it seems odd the prized position for a news story, front page above the fold, would be a story on a local school board member being investigated for a sexy simile involving Dolly Parton's anatomy, likening it to sacrificing a public park for the need of another shopping mall.

The real news here is that the Superintendent of Schools Rick Mills, who is making enemies faster than Putin in Ukraine, is wasting money the school system does not have to investigate a "quip" by school board member David "Watchdog" Miner.

At the same time Mills is looking at Manatee County's public charter schools for money to solve the district's insolvencies. He advised them with no notice and no negotiations that he wants to cancel school bus service for charter schools.

Some of these schools have contracts with the board for these services; all have parents who pay taxes just like the parents of students in regular public schools whose students are bused.

The high preforming FCAT "A" rated Manatee School for the Arts (MSA) sends nearly $400,000 to the district for bus service each year. MSA's bills are paid on time and their books balance, unlike the district.

The other Mills option is a raise in the transportation fee. By the way, this could disrupt thousands of families to save the district a miserable $55,000, or cost MSA one or two teaching positions.

Mr. Mills might start looking at the fat and waste that still exists in the school system and stop wasting time and money on a "Miner" event he has made a political vendetta.

He might also stop bullying teachers and the principal at J.P. Miller Elementary for daring to try to save the park. This is not the Army, Mr. Mills.

David R. Kraner, Chairman, MSA


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