The District 51 School Board’s new conservative majority — Andrea Haitz, Angela Lema and Willie Jones — appear to be getting ready to fire School District Superintendent, Diana Sirko, Assistant Superintendent Brian Hill and Tracy Gallegos, the District’s Director of Equity and Inclusion, who was hired into that position in July, 2021.
The three Board members gave short notice about a special meeting to be held on Monday, February 5 at 5:00 p.m. discuss these three employees’ contracts with attorneys they just hired in January to serve as their own representatives: David Price and Tammy Eret of Hoskin, Farina and Kampf.
The Board members produced the agenda on Saturday evening, 2/5/22, and then quietly slipped it onto the School Board’s meeting website (pdf) on Sunday evening, 2/6/21.
Mimicking Douglas County School Board to the letter:
Over 1,000 Douglas County teachers called in sick to protest the move February 3, leading the District to have to cancel classes. The Douglas County teachers’ union is warning that a high percentage of teachers will now likely leave the District in the wake of their superintendent’s firing, and an online petition is pushing to recall the school board members who voted to fire Wise. So far that petition has gathered 21,781 signatures.
Haitz, Lema and Jones appear to mimicking Douglas County’s playbook to the letter, running afoul of open meetings laws by conferring with each other in secret, moving quickly to clean house of established administrators they don’t like, rescinding the district’s coronavirus masking precautions amid the pandemic without consulting public health authorities and making wholesale changes to the district’s equity policy.
Call to Action
If you want to protest the ongoing attempts at wholesale degradation of School District 51 and help stop the District’s descent into chaos, here are some ways to help:
The school board members will hold their meeting behind closed doors, but supporters of Diana Sirko, Brian Hill and Tracy Gallegos are asking people to show their support by physically gathering in front of the building where the school board members will hold their meeting on Monday at 5:00 p.m.:
D-51 Harry Butler Board Room
455 N. 22nd Street, Suite B, Grand Junction
Sign making: There will be a gathering for sign-making and a quick activist training from a representative of Positive Women’s Network on Monday, February 7, at 3:00. Meet at 1160 N. 4th St. (KWSI Radio station) at 3:00 and then head over to the Harry Butler Board Room (455 N. 22nd St.) for a rally at 4:30.
To email comments of support for those threatened with firing to the school board, use this online form.
Please flood their public comment email with support for Dr. Sirko, Dr. Hill and Tracy Gallegos:
Here are email addresses of the school board members:
Doug Levinson: email@example.com
Kari Sholtes: firstname.lastname@example.org
Andrea Haitz Andrea.Haitz@d51schools.org
Angela Lema: Angela.Lema@d51schools.org
…or use the Comment Form: https://www.mesa.k12.co.us/apps/contactus/index.cfm