The Clifton School Board election is Tuesday, March 11.

The Copper Era last week issued an invitation to all school board candidates to submit

a letter to the editor, keeping within 200 words, stating their positions on why they should remain on the school board or why they should be elected to replace the current sitting members.

The sitting members are Adam Chacon and Reynaldo Tavison. Chacon is being challenged by Christine Hancock while Tavison is facing Ron Johnson and Betty Swesey.

The following are their statements submitted as letters to the editor:

Adam Chacon

Our budget last year was just over $400,000. Our budget for this year is just over $800,000. The majority of grades last year were Ds and Fs, and the majority for this year are As and Bs, while most schools will have a C average.

Bowie Districts' budget for this year is over $2 million. Our enrollment compares close to their district, but we have the potential to keep growing. Palo Verde District uses the same exact online curriculum as we do, they're in the top 10 of the state.

Our results for this year has flourished despite the nasty rumors and evil lies some of the few has spread about the children and staff, and which the staff is top notch and doing a tremendous job. Thank you!

One of the CHS students' has asked. "What do I do if the school is closed? This is the first school I have been successful at." Now that hurts and I have a question for those which do care, did our Lord Jesus spend his time with the people which had plenty or the people that needed help?

For those who can hear let them hear and vote for the candidates that are willing to help our communities children who which are already in place: also plan to expand for more children's success!

So I challenge you to help our youth, and fight the people that think they can insult our community who say. "That Clifton is dead and can never come back." Step Up and vote for Clifton’s heart beat to jump start again and show them Who we are and Where we came from!

Adam Chacon

Clifton School Board member

Christine Hancock

I’m a mother, grandmother and paralegal. I’ve lived here in Greenlee County for 32 years.

  Much has been said in letters to the editor by a school employee and the Clifton School superintendent that critics of the school’s operation are “using incorrect information” regarding the school’s functioning. Those critics are simply using statistics and information from the Arizona Department of Education and information made public at school board meetings.

The board and administration challenged members of the public to visit the school to see what is “actually” happening and how students are “thriving on the on-line classes”. I took them up on that offer – or challenge. When I visited the school I saw students talking, giggling, slouched, staring at unmoving screens and exuding boredom. Thriving? Not.

We were told by the board and administration the they had “to levy a small school adjustment tax”. (How small was your adjustment, taxpayer?) The “school has everything it needs to run effectively for years to come.” (At what andwhose cost?)

It has been said “The (elected) board members need to truly care about Clifton and its children.”

What, am I a heartless monster? I absolutely want what’s best for the children.

 What about words never spoken (but should’ve been): We’ll teach K-6 and not raise taxes. I apologize for the tax. It’s just a one-time tax increase. Don’t hire a $3200 per month‘Business Manager’ (Hilyer). Let’s do hire a counselor who actually meets required qualifications. Day: “Thanks for the $25,000 pay raise!”

  What we heard at the Feb. 3 candidate forum from the two sitting board members was “Get over it!” and “Move on!” I totally agree! The Clifton school you remember is gone. It cannot be resurrected or purchased at your neighbor’s expense.

  My position as a school board candidate calls for clarity, common sense and accountability, please elect me,

Christine Hancock

Clifton School Board candidate

  Ron Johnson

My name is Ron Johnson. I am the Chief Deputy Assessor for our county and I

am running for the Clifton school board. I love this community and have

always supported the Clifton schools, but, as a board member, I would make a

few changes!

I have been greatly affected, monetarily, by two of the current board

members' decision to maintain a k thru 12 curriculum when it was clear that

the Clifton community was not, and still is not, able to support this

program. I believe that an altruistic attitude is necessary when dealing

with the youth of our community. We need a school board that is responsible

to the students and our community.

First, I would analyze and assess the current situation, cut the fat,

(what's not working), and maintain what does work OR close the program

altogether. As a board member, I would diligently work to do what is right

and make all things transparent in the process by keeping our community

aware of what is going on while always complying with the Arizona State

Statutes governing school systems.

It's time to change a bad situation into a productive, less expensive, good

experience for our kids and community..whether it's here in Clifton OR not!

Thank you,

Ron Johnson

Betty Swesey

My name is Betty Freeman Swesey, I was born and raised in Clifton.

After attending the Truth in Taxation meeting in July, it was clear to me something had to be done.  I decided to help with the recall and run for a seat on the school board. I have attended every school board meeting since July.  

Any  information we received has come directly from the administration or the state.

The board  spent $93,000 for a computer program , $95,000 for two teachers to supervise and a tech $21.55 an hour to sit in the lab.  There are  programs available from the state for free.  

  The 100 day absence rate as reported by the Arizona Dept. of Education was 25.2% for the high school and 15% for the junior high , with this lack of attendance its hard to imagine these students are making A's & B's.

   I agree the students of Clifton need a chance, they need a chance at a better education.

It’s time for some common sense. It’s time for some accountability.

Betty Swesey

Clifton School Board candidate

Reynaldo Tavison

A letter from Mr. Tavison was not received by The Copper by Sunday, March 2, noon deadline. He did call the Era around 11:45 a.m. Monday and said he had not checked his e-mail lately so he was not aware of the invitation to candidates to submit a letter to the editor nor was he aware of the deadline.

Mr. Tavison said he had his letter written and only needed to send it to the Era. Nothing was received from him by 2 p.m. Monday.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.