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SCHOOLS: Questions require smart answers

| May 22, 2024 1:00 AM

In the May 11 Press, Shon Hocker announced that he will not take a superintendent job in Yakima. Another finalist was chosen and Hocker is not exploring further positions elsewhere.

“There’s a perception that maybe ‘the supe would be jumping ship because things are tough here,’ and that is not the case at all,” Hocker said.

“You can be exploring an avenue, and you can be 100% dedicated to your current district at the same time, and that’s exactly where I’m at.”

If so, why is he “exploring avenues” after only three years in Coeur d’Alene, anyway?

If so, why is the district facing a $6 million budget shortfall? Could its past use of now-concluded federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (COVID) funds to balance its budget have anything to do with it?

Why is district-wide proficiency (according to NICHE.com) only 60% in reading and 44% in math with a graduation rate of 90%? Could the teachers be pre-briefing answers to tests before administering them? Are students getting passing grades without having mastered the material?

Superintendent Hocker responds to critics who suggest cutting district office staff to save money that, “No departments are overstaffed as reflected in the curriculum audit that was conducted in 2019.” What does a five-year-old $50,000 study have to do with today’s shortfall?

Questions need answers in school districts throughout our area. Why has Post Falls gone to a 4-day week? Why are other districts considering it? Why are parents turning to homeschooling and private institutions?

School Boards: Doing your jobs includes far more than acquiring cash to run the district!

RON DEADY

Post Falls

BOB LaRUE

Hauser