RussellOlson.com offers a cheerful little ad from the GOP candidate for the District 8 State Senate seat. (It was labeled "movie," but it's only audio. Darn!) Let's listen:
Note the continued shout-outs to the jockocracy of our district (funny—I don't recall football coming up much in the actual bills our legislators have to consider).
Alas, Olson's words don't align with his actions. The Republican candidate voted to force several small schools in South Dakota to close. 2007's Senate Bill 157 required schools with less than 100 students enrolled to reorganize—i.e. consolidate or shut down. Olson voted for it. Olson did vote against HB 1082, which would have closed schools with enrollments under 130. I guess local control is valuable unless you come from a school district to affect your party's chances of winning the next election.
It's nice to talk about how much we love small schools. But Russell Olson has voted to close small schools. Will he do it again? Folks in school districts like Oldham-Ramona (2007 enrollment 104), Rutland (114), and Woonsocket (172) might want to consider that question before November 4.
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