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Published February 17 2010

West Fargo group wants improved communication

A group that met for the first time Tuesday aims to improve communication between West Fargo school officials and district staff members.

“I think it has that potential,” said West Fargo Education Association President Joan Connor. “We have to start somewhere.”

The communications committee made up of school officials and staff members is doing just that, meeting three times before the end of the school year to discuss issues or concerns in the schools.

A similar panel fell by the wayside two years ago.

On Tuesday, the group focused on the upcoming March 23 referendum, the search for a new superintendent and uniform district discipline plans.

“I think it was a very informational meeting,” said Westside Elementary School teacher Verna Rasmussen. “Any communication is a positive thing.”

In the past year, the teachers association has pushed for the panel to be reinstated to help mend strained relations between administrators and teachers.

Serving on the 10-member committee are School Board members Karen Nitzkorski and Patti Stedman, Superintendent Dana Diesel Wallace, STEM Center Principal Tabatha Joyce and staff members Janice Best, Bette Nerby, Gale Haug, Aaron Knodel, Rasmussen and Weber.

They meet again March 16 and April 20.

“I’m hoping this committee will also talk about positive things,” counselor Michelle Weber said. “There are good things happening (too).”

Readers can reach Forum reporter Kelly Smith at (701) 241-5515