If we are local taxpayers, our kids should be able to take the course, even if they don't attend school in Crookston.

    Let me preempt this by saying, I don’t like to stir trouble & dislike when I’m put in a position where after weighing the pros & cons, I determine something has to be said.         

    Drivers Education in Crookston for students who aren’t enrolled within the Crookston School District has put me in this position. I was a bit surprised to learn that because my daughter doesn’t attend school here, she won’t be able to take Drivers Education here. After visiting with Mr. Trostad instructor, the biggest question/thought I came away with is if I’m paying for this instruction is it considered privately funded? Does any of the tax money I pay into the District 593 pot get disbursed out to help cover the costs?

    So I placed a call to Mr. Bates, Superintendent of Crookston. If I understood him correctly & I believe I did, it is private pay unless private pay doesn’t cover all costs, then money can come out of the District 593 pots general fund to pick up any difference. I was also made aware that while students who attend school in Fisher use to be able to take drivers training here, the great divide occurred over Fisher sports no longer wanting to partner with Crookston & their sports program.

    I then made a call to Tim Dufault who is a Crookston School Board member, as I was told this was a decision made by the local school board. Pretty much had the same line of discussion with Mr. Dufault I had with Mr. Bates, however Tim wasn’t aware of the change occurring about the time Fisher decided not to partner with Crookston sports. The one thing that was reiterated however, is that because Driver’s Education is sponsored through the school, they are able to disallow any other local residing teen who doesn’t attend school here from taking drivers training locally.

     Then I got thinking about what sponsored means. It would be one thing if the school was actually paying out of their own pot to have kids take drivers training, but they’re not unless they are short. That being said, either way if they were paying up front so kids could take drivers training at no cost or picking up slack on the back side, I pay into that pot. Like any other tax that is public, I have a right to whatever that service may be. Maybe I don’t understand what sponsored means. In my opinion, this doesn’t qualify. To me it looks to be more like a private pay, possibly using my tax dollar, for a service I, along with other parents with teens in the community need. I know there will be some people who will be reading this saying, “that’s what you get for not sending your child to school in Crookston.” Having graduated from Crookston myself, in a perfect world, there’s nothing I would have liked more than to send my child here. However, we don’t live in a perfect world. Sometimes circumstances arise where you have to make the best choice for your child.

    In my opinion, being penalized because of a disagreement over a sports relationship is not a legitimate reason. Punishing kids for adult decisions.

    There was also some discussion had, over the number of enrolled students they are trying to train now & how Mr. Trostad would be able to manage even more if non enrolled students were also allowed to train here.             Knowing what my options are, I would certainly be willing to get on a list & wait our turn if need be. Mr. Trostad would also be able to either decrease or increase the rate to adjust accordingly.

    All being said, if there is a semi-retired, retired or other individual that is looking for a career opportunity within our community, this is it. The lengths that teens & parents who live in this community, but aren’t allowed to take drivers training locally have to go to, to get this accomplished is unreasonable.

    I guess it also makes me question what the word “community” is about. Seems to me someone has missed the mark here.