Declo Elementary Parents Met With School Board


By Michelle Bartlome

Burley, Idaho (KMVT-TV) - It's a story that's caused a lot of controversy within a small town. And now parents are asking for answers.

Tuesday night, about 50 parents met with the Cassia County Joint School District Board after an incident that happened at Declo Elementary earlier this month.

Frustration and anger in the eyes of many parents asking for a change just like Cindy Hurst.

"We want to know this isn't going to happen again," said Cindy Hurst, Parent of student punished.

Her son was one of six students in a fourth grade class whose face was painted as a punishment for not reaching a reading goal.

Students who failed to meet the goal could either stay inside at recess or have their faces written on by classmates.

"All in all, this situation was bad and I think parents should agree it wasn't an ideal situation to be in. We have never said that we want anybody's job. We want actions and we want solutions,” said Hurst.

Solutions to a problem that seems to continue to grow.

"What we are here for is to ask the board and parents what we can do to help Declo Elementary move forward,” said Geri Linlenquist, PTO President, Declo Elementary School.

"Shame on you guys for not taking a stand and making a statement. You could have said something. By not saying something, you agreed with the other actions,” said Jacob Larsen, Parent of student in class.

The Board is speaking now, reminding parents they're looking into the situation.

"Something is being done. It's being looked at. Dr. Smyer had an executive session about this. That's about all i can say,” said Mike Matthews, Cassia County Joint School Board.

But is it enough? Parents like Hurst are waiting for the School Board's response.

Cassia County Joint School District officials filed a complaint against the Declo Elementary School teacher.

The Idaho State Department of Education's Professional Standards Commission is examining the case.

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