Springfield school board president Susan White will soon be leaving that role. She lost a bid for re-election on Tuesday. White says she’s not surprised she lost to Mike Zimmers – who’s been a teacher, administrator, and principal in the district.
White talks with WUIS’ Rachel Otwell about recent scandals within the district, problems that arose under Superintendent Walter Milton’s administration, why she voted to close the Capital College Preparatory Academy, and more:
White says as school board president she shouldered much of the blame when tough decisions were made – like voting to close a school and paying Superintendent Walter Milton to leave well before his contract with the district was up. She says Zimmers will serve the board well. But White says she still sees many hardships ahead – namely the continued deterioration of the district’s budget:
WHITE: “If people aren’t willing to make some tough decisions I’m worried that district 186 is going to end up like East St. Louis – under state supervision.”
District 186 is trying to cut several million dollars over the next year. At the same time, the board is facing scandals including leaked confidential student records as well as missing recordings from closed-door meetings. The board’s vote to close the Capitol College Preparatory Academy angered some parents and community members – and many candidates who ran for school board promised to reverse the decision and keep the middle school open.