Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Charges about School District are false


Two comments were made in a story in the July 13 issue ("District keeps leadership status quo") that need to be addressed.

Regarding the comment that four members of the public have blamed Blaine County School District Business Manager Mike Chatterton for the lawsuit by McKinstry Essention against the district, McKinstry chose to file the lawsuit. Mike Chatterton is the person who questioned McKinstry's unjustified and unsupported claims for additional payments in excess of the agreed guaranteed maximum. Mr. Chatterton brought this to the attention of the superintendent and board of trustees. The district decided not to give in to McKinstry's demands.

Elizabeth Schwerdtle commented that "$26 million pretty much has been lost here." The district believes this is both factually and legally incorrect. The contract between the district and McKinstry had a guaranteed maximum that could not be increased without prior written approval from the district. It will become clear as the lawsuit proceeds that many of the charges by McKinstry are not supported by the contract and documentation provided by McKinstry.

Due to the fact that the matter is in litigation, the district has been instructed to limit its comments in response to McKinstry's allegations. We believe our view of this dispute will be justified once the litigation has concluded. We ask for your patience in letting this matter be decided in the Blaine County court, where it is now pending as a result of McKinstry's filing of the complaint.

In the meantime, our attention continues to be on our mission: to become a world-class, student-focused community of teaching and learning. As the new school year approaches, we continue to focus on providing the best education possible for all of the children in our community. We encourage people to subscribe to our weekly newsletters at www.blaineschools.org to receive our latest news and learn more about our local public schools.

Heather Crocker

Director of communication

Blaine County School District




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