Friday, January 20, 2017


A big thank you to the Save Hoover supporters who attended Tuesday's FMP listening post!  No matter your perspective on school-related issues, it's so important to engage in opportunities to dialogue. While Save Hoover does not take a position on the upcoming GO bond, we do recognize that the prospect of a school closure continues to be a topic of far-reaching public concern.

Following the meeting, I was disappointed to receive an email from the Hoover Advocacy Committee in which the group’s president, Mary Kate Pilcher Hayek, referred to Save Hoover supporters as provincial and an embarrassment to her.  

The email also characterized Save Hoover supporters as attending the listening post in an attempt to sink the bond.  Having actually attended the listening post, I can say participants shared their thoughts about ensuring our district has the capacity to accommodate future growth, supporting schools that are walkable and environmentally friendly, and maintaining a balance between our more established and our newer elementaries.  Real people from across the district raised real concerns. They were there to learn and share, and that is a good thing for the district.

As our community moves forward, it will continue to be important to engage each other respectfully and not resort to name calling or inaccurate characterizations.  Voicing critical questions about a $200 million bond is constructive, not
 sentimental, as Pilcher Hayek characterized Save Hoover supporters in her email.  Save Hoover supporters aren't concerned about convenience; they're concerned about putting forth the best possible plan, one that 60% of the voters must approve in order to pass.

As the Chair of Save Hoover, I want to thank each of you for standing up for what you believe in, for refusing to be bullied or silenced.  Know that we will stand with you, and that we are ready as ever to advocate for Hoover school.

All my best,
Erin Kaufman

Chair, Save Hoover Committee


  1. How can I get a copy of Mary Kate's email? I think the public needs to know how she feels about people exercising their First Amendment right to free speech.

    Whatever her Hoover Advocacy Committee is about, it certainly isn't about Hoover Elementary. According to what I was told by people sitting at my table during the Grant Wood Listening Post, the plan is to knock down Hoover Elementary and put in a parking lot.
    I thought I must have been abducted by aliens, what they were saying made NO sense!

    Who tears down a perfectly good school that already has the updates the district is paying to make at other schools, for a parking lot??? It is crazily financially imprudent.

  2. Thank you Erin. Call me provincial. That whale of a school bond is now bigger than Iowa's deficit. Debating whether any size bond is worth one's salt is not embarrassing but right.

  3. The $190 million plus bond should be sunk. Tearing down Hoover, which is surrounded by homes, and adding onto Alexander, which has a lot of open field around it, benefits developers and people who make money from development, not all of the people who will pay for the bond.

    The writing is on the wall. The district previously cut hundreds of planned seats in inner Iowa City schools. Now added are cuts to seats at Lemme and Wood. Crazy!

    The district can barely afford to staff now and already made cuts to music, bussing, and foreign languages. What will the district cut next to staff new schools?


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