Fords Prarie Superintendant Candidates

Dr. Grant speaks at Fords Prairie Elementary during a candidate forum for the position of Superintendent in January, 2020 in Centralia.

Centralia Superintendent Dr. Lisa Grant gave a presentation and answered questions at the Centralia City Council meeting regarding the levy that is on the Aug. 4 election ballot.

“We know we have work to do to work more collaboratively with our community and be better stewards of our funding but I am committed to that, our board is committed to that. We know that by working collaboratively we can build strong schools for our students, our district and our community,” Grant said during the virtual council meeting.

Grant explained that the district has three sources of income: Federal — to support certain programs such as special education services. State — which is the main funding source and pays for basic education services and the amount is based upon enrollment numbers. Local — that is the levy that pays for extra activities such as athletics, the arts, and any program before or after school as well as additional support programs for students. 

Councilor Kelly Smith Johnston said that although Grant is early in her leadership, the community had a “resounding ‘no’ vote” to the first levy in February and asked what Grant would say to those who voted against the levy.

Grant said that since assuming the role she has met with 97 staff, community members and other individuals to try to better understand our community and she hopes that those who voted “no” during the last levy election have already started to see some changes within the school district.

“We also, in order to be more transparent and also to involve the community, are forming a budget task force. If anyone is interested, we want to have community members help advise us on the priorities for the levy funds. That group will start meeting in August,” Grant said.

At 5 p.m. on Wednesday the Centralia School District is holding a Zoom levy discussion where community members and parents can ask questions. The Zoom link can be found on the district’s Facebook page and on the district’s website —

“We want people to have the information that they need so there is a page on the school district’s website dedicated to the levy. There’s a place there to ask questions,” Grant said.

(2) comments

Jason E.

I was already inclined to vote no on the levy, and the recent decision to push fall sports into the Spring has cemented that decision for me. School district keeps saying that they need more money to run programs such as sports. But, our children weren't able to take advantage of those programs for a large portion of the end of last school year and it doesn't look like those programs will be available for the foreseeable future. I think that we as tax payers need to send a message to the school district that they need to learn how to affectively use the money that is already allocated to them. The school district needs to stop coming to us hat-in-hand asking for more money when they are fiscally irresponsible.



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