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March 17, 2004

Parents upset with administration at School for the Deaf

From: Aberdeen American News, SD - Mar 17, 2004

Associated Press

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - Some parents of students at the South Dakota School for the Deaf marched and carried signs outside the school on Wednesday asking that the administration be removed.

They accused the school's leadership of not respecting students and want administrators fired.

"If we change the administration and make the necessary accomplishments, then I think that the daily life of the school is going to be better," parent Jimmy Beldon told KSFY-TV through an interpreter.

Superintendent Jon Green said the school does the best it can for students.

"We're a small state and we're a small school and we have limited resources. We can't be everything to everybody so we do the best we can to meet everybody's needs over a longer term," Green said.

The Board of Regents - which oversees the school - said it supports the administration. School officials and regents also said they are open to discussions with the parents.

The complaints are not the first leveled against the school.

In 2002, a group of parents wrote a letter to then-Gov. Bill Janklow asking for Green's removal. They said Green, who was hired in 1995, had inadequate management skills and low expectations for students.

Regents backed Green, saying he had improved the school's facilities and finances during his tenure.

The School for the Deaf, founded in 1880, offers a residential program in Sioux Falls and outreach programs to families throughout the state.

© 2004 AP Wire and wire service sources. All Rights Reserved.