Strategic plan is unveiled

Milford school district superintendent Dr. Jessica Huizenga unveiled the district’s new strategic plan at the board of education meeting held on July 15th.

The multi-tiered plan, which will have a five year roll out, is intended to allow students to “be the designers of their own stories,” with education, guidance and nurturing beginning at the elementary school level through high school and after.

The strategy is to strengthen core curriculum and structure; increase time supports for students, teachers and families; invest staff through powerful ongoing professional development; provide more access, opportunity and encourage innovation at every level; focus on the fundamentals of our elementary education to build a strong foundation for middle and high school students; and expand opportunities for choice and innovation throughout the school district, to increase access to technology, the arts, music, and foreign language.

The strategic plan was favorably voted in by a unanimous decision.

At a previous meeting, there was heated discussion of text messages allegedly exchanged between board member Jenni Siegrist and former staffer Jamie Morgan, that were made public by a person who identified themselves only as, “Milford Citizen.”

On that subject of the outside investigation team report regarding misconduct, board chair Ron Carvell said, “What we will say is that we’re hoping to have the report prior to the next board meeting, If we do not get a report that we can release to the public by that date, we will certainly let you know.”

When the floor was opened to public comments, Milford resident Shane Morgan asked about the statement written and read by Siegrist at the last meeting.

“Since Ms. Siegrist made several allegations and charges on her own behalf against my wife and ‘Milford Citizen,’ if it turns out that those text messages are authentic and correct, will the board be issuing any kind of retraction or apology to my wife and to ‘Milford Citizen?” asked Morgan. “Ms. Siegrist is acting, in my opinion, as an agent of the school board, therefore she is a legal representative authorized to act on behalf of the school board. In my opinion, she crosses the line in defending herself to going on the offense against my wife and ‘Milford Citizen,’ saying things like ‘they are slanderers,’ and she referred to the text messages as ‘libelous and replete with errors, half-truths and above all do not provide any accurate information.’ In the event that those text messages are in fact, correct, what is the board’s stance on that since she is acting on behalf of the school board and thus the school district?”

Ron Carvell answered by saying, “To generally answer it now, we have to wait to see what the Investigation [presents]. We have to see what those facts are and then the board will come together and certainly take a look at that.”