Vail Daily letter: Is this leadership?
July 2, 2010
I believe all of us need a refresher course on the definition of the word “leadership.” The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the word “leadership” as the following: 1) the office or position of a leader; 2) capacity to lead; 3) the act or instance of leading.The third definition of the word “leadership” is where our Eagle County School District superintendent and school board have failed the families, students and teachers of Eagle County. To read in the Vail Daily that our superintendent, Dr. Sandra Smyser, has accepted a bonus and salary increase in these economic times is reprehensible – especially in light of the school district asking the teachers for concessions in salary and bonuses and the cutting of 50 staff positions.Summit County School District’s superintendent, Millie Hamner, is retiring soon. In the Vail Daily online article, dated Wednesday, it states “At its meeting Tuesday, the school board negotiated a contract with Hamner for her remaining year. Like all staff in the district, she agreed to a salary freeze in ongoing efforts to deal with declining revenues. Next year will be the third in a row that Hamner has not taken a raise. Furthermore, Hamner delayed the start of next year’s contract to Aug. 1, rather than July 1, so the district will save one month’s worth of her salary.”Link to article: http://www.vaildaily.com/article/20100623/NEWS/100629933&parentprofile=search.This quote from the Vail Daily online article is the antithesis of what type of leadership our Eagle County School District has exhibited.If I am mistaken in my view of how the Eagle County School District has acted, I certainly welcome a clarification.Ann Woodworth Eagle