By : Mark Stegeman, TUSD Board Member
Dear, TUSD Voters, Staff, Teachers, Parents and other Stakeholders
I write, first and foremost, to express my appreciation to all the persons who supported TUSD’s bond, voted for the bond, or worked to pass the bond.
The results were discouraging, but I believe that there is great potential support for TUSD and desire for its success. The community needs more time to be convinced that TUSD will be consistently prudent in how it spends taxpayer dollars, will tighten its focus on student achievement, and will do what is necessary to ensure a safe and productive environment in all of its schools. Before we ask the community to do heavy lifting by asking for more financial support, district leadership must do its part by showing that we will tighten our belts and insist on consistent excellence in management and consumer service. TUSD must break through the inertia of the past and show that it is willing to embrace the radical change necessary to stem the rapid declines in enrollment. Only after we do our heavy lifting are we likely to earn majority support for more funding.
This critique includes the new board that took office ten months ago. On too many occasions and in too many ways it has been afraid to disrupt the status quo. If this dispiriting election has any positive consequence, perhaps it will be forcing everyone in district leadership to realize that they must not only talk but act, that they must not only accept but lead major change. Simply blaming the state, the desegregation process, previous boards or administrations, or even the voters themselves, is disingenuous and solves nothing.
TUSD’s teachers and site staff already do much heavy lifting. They deserve better from those of us in leadership positions. Thank you for your service, and I am sure that the vote does not reflect upon your efforts, which are appreciated by all.
Thank you, Mark