Eureka School Board
May 10th, 2021 Public Meeting
By Sally Durham

0:00 Pledge

Vote results

1:22 Motion to approve election results- Approved

2:02 Thanks to Kade for service

2:28 Swearing in elected members

4:26 Technical issues

5:21 Nominations and vote for co-chair, switch of positions

7:35 Nominations for vice chair and vote

9:25 Nominations for Parliamentarian (provides advice on parliamentary procedure)

10:00 Suggested they table vote on parliamentarian

11:53 Voted in parliamentarian

12:00 Nomination of clerk and vote

12:53 Time for meetings discussed. Board chair suggested board training with board attorney there to answer board questions. Motion passed to keep regular meetings at the same time.

15:43 Non Agenda Item public comments

16:24 Public- I have a handicapped child. She talked about how involved the teachers in Eureka have been with her children. Made aware of inappropriate material showed to children. She watched it with the intent to defend the school. Shocked by what she saw. Wants the school to renew the trust in school.

20:15 Public- If we educate you without teaching moral principles, we create clever devils. This has always been a great institution. I recognize not all moral principles align. But “First do no harm.” Want to trust the kids will be educated and looked after academically and morally.

22:40 Public- Reiterate previous comments. I can’t even speak the foul language in these movies during the board meeting without being kicked out. So why is it being shown in the school? I was going to read content out loud and I can’t bring myself to do it. You need to watch it and make a determination. You need to do a formal investigation. How did this get passed? We need answers? Who knew about this? Calling for emergency school board meeting.

24:46 Public- Board needs to watch the video and so does everyone else who is defending the film. This was not an art film.

25:22 Public- I’ve got grandkids getting to school age. We voted in these school board members to represent the parents, not faculty.

26:00 Public- Been in this school generations. We appreciate teachers, worked as a substitute. I want to protect those coming in. As a substitute teacher, I showed a video I should have objected to then. The movies are getting more graphic. I want this school to be home for up and coming generations. A family protects each other. When they showed Schindler's List, they sent a note to the parents. Did they give parents a chance to opt out?

30:03 Public – When we moved here, we toured the schools. I was impressed. It was positive. I was also a teacher. There are policies in place to protect teachers and students. That should be the focus rather than an attack. These are difficult situations. Hoping for a resolution where we learn from mistakes.

32:09 Public – I started a school. I am very interested. On behalf of the community, the main concern is curricular review. The calls we’re getting now, they’re concerned. They want parent involvement. Critical Race theory is being debated around the country. I encourage the board to have a parental curriculum review. I think that would be wise going forward to prevent these situations going forward to protect everyone involved.

35:25 Public- Maybe it’s a rumor, but I’ve heard 3 days suspended without pay. I don’t think this is going to fly. Based on the video I saw, that’s not going to work. These people aren’t going to be bullied by the teacher’s union this time.

37:01 Public- There are a lot of rumors going around. Someone needs to say what’s out there. The kids are getting bombarded with questions about what’s going on. The kids don’t understand what’s going on and they shouldn’t have to know. Is someone explaining things to them.

38:00 When is the investigation going to be complete? Timeframe explained. Expected investigation will be done by next board meeting.

40:14 Public- Not sure how this happens. Everything we watched growing up, there had to be a permission slip. Teachers are here to educate, not indoctrinate. I don’t get it. I watched that movie. I don’t know how anyone thought it was okay to show that to kids. We’re the parents. We need to know what’s going on.

41:35 Public- I have 2 daughters. I grew up here. I came back to Eureka because of the safe community for my kids. I’ve never once questioned their safety. Tonight I am in fear for my daughters, and the lasting damage it can cause. I’ve worked with kids through youth ministry. I know that mental damage can be more lasting than physical. Regardless of religion or belief, do the right thing.

44:35 Public- What I saw looks like a sexual predator. How long are you going to wait?

45:20 Public- This decision shouldn’t be made based on our opinion of the people involved. All that’s necessary for evil to prosper is for good men to do nothing. We need to act for the good of the children, and not for popular opinion. This is our community, our children. That needs to be our priority.

47:07 Public- This has been a long time coming. It’s easy in a small community to say those problems are elsewhere, but it’s here. I don’t believe in cancel culture. But someone in this Board thinks this isn’t a big deal. If that’s how you feel, you don’t belong here. Do what is right.

48:37 Public- We have an opportunity to not focus on this video but the system. Make sure the parents are in the loop and part of the process. Not scapegoat one person.

50: 19 General Board comments

50:34 Communications and reports.

51:00 No changes to the agenda

51:28 Business Report- We’re where we were last year. Adding more finance to the training for new members of board. If you see anything that jumps out at you, ask questions. Still have large ticket items coming in. COVID funding available for them to apply for. We don’t have deep pockets. We’re hoping to use it to help funding next year. It could get us through. We need elementary staffing.

55:45 Public question. You’re getting covid funding but not spending it on COVID things?

Board- COVID money helps with expenses. Kids attending have been down because they’re staying home. I don’t know yet the rules for the COVID money. Declining enrollment due to COVID is covered, but we don’t want to get reliant on that band aid.

57:48 Minutes included from committee

58:19 No online comments

58:45 Personnel report- Ron transfer discussed. Motion to hire Ron. Passed

1:01:06 Speech Therapist need is growing. We’ve overworked her. Recommend hiring another half-time therapist. New Bill passed saying they need a 4 year communications degree. Getting this new person is really good. We got lucky, it’s a difficult position to fill. Motion to hire Shelby- Passed

1:03:16 Social Studies Teacher interviewed. Recommend we hire him. There’s no affordable housing here. It’s hard to get teachers in Flathead. We’ve talked about having small homes available. It’s good for the economy, but bad for new hires. Motion to hire- Passed

1:06:01 Jason for sub-custodian. He’s already stepped up and subbed. Motion to hire- Passed

1:08:15 Hiring non-certified staff. Need letters of intent. It’s been hard to get custodians and bus drivers. We need to get those letters out. Recommend we hire the whole list. Motion to hire. Most are on multi-year contract. Rehires no longer governed by nepotism rules. Motion- Passed

1:11:39 New Business- COVID changed mask mandate and language which allowed it. Band aid language. Motion to change language switching from CDC guidelines to Department of Health guidelines- Motion- Passed

1:13:46 Checks issued 2009-2015 and not cashed. We can’t reissue them because they are pre-conversion. They need to issue new checks. It’s been years. If someone does try to cash so late, we can bring them before the board for approval. Motion to cancel outstanding checks- What happens to those funds? Board has to get more information. They’ve never done that before. Contacting appropriate people- Motion Passed

1:18:14 Administrative Report- Continue electronic meetings? Time limits suggested. It does let people participate. How well does it work? Continue for now

1:20:01 Insurance quotes coming in. Another 0% increase this year. Self-managed. Heat bio-fuel system normally gets shut down in May. We shut it down in April because it broke. Back up unit is leaking. Afraid to fire it without repair. It’s been cold. One building was in the mid-fifties. Boiler inspection coming. Hopefully this won’t be an issue next year, but struggling to regulate temp without causing more damage to equipment. We advised people to dress for the weather.

1:25:04 Training scheduling discussed. 4-8 PM followed by Board Meeting on 7th of June.

1:26:26 Big ticket items. Paint on the bus barn suggested $15k. & $12k to upgrade the lights in Gym to LED to oppose costs later on. Life expectancy for bus barn is low.

Public- would board be interested in community involvement on the painting of the barn

Board- we have to check legality, but we would love participation. Discussed further

Roof bid coming up

When do we reassign the committees? Volunteers for committee. Whoever isn’t at meeting will get volunteered. You can vote in, but please don’t miss next month because of the training.

1:32:25 Discussed food

1:33:10 MHSA annual proposal. Not anticipating any change to sports, but it will be on next month’s agenda.

1:33:48 Safety Plan- For July meeting. Transportation committee.

4-hr training and a lot of agenda items for next month. Another meeting can be called to cover everything. We don’t want a 4-hr meeting after a 4-hr training. We can also transfer agenda items to July.

1:38:19 Public- We would like to sponsor board luncheon- until we do more research on what’s allowed, we need to say no.

1:39:16 Adjourn

“There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.” - Martin Luther King Jr.