GREAT FALLS — Kids Education Yes (KEY) held its annual meeting on Wednesday for present and future supporters of public education in Great Falls.
KEY is an advocacy group that looks at how public education can be supported in the community by looking at both the needs and successes of the local public school system.
This past year, KEY conducted a community survey to gauge Great Falls’ attitude toward public education in the community.
Jamie Marshal, KEY chair, told MTN, “We were thrilled to find that 91% are remarkably pro-education. Our community values that. That’s something that’s very important to us.”
But they also concluded that many people in the community do not understand the funding needs for public education in Great Falls, including levy bonds.
“When we look at the cuts that occurred over the past 10 years, we’re seeing a tremendous impact on students, on teachers and on businesses,” Jamie added. “The KEY group is looking to really share those stories with the community and help people become more aware of what these cuts really are doing.”
Everyone who attended the meeting was asked to jot down a short story of a success or failure they’ve seen in the public school system, whether it be a teacher making an impact on a student’s life, how a certain cut class or teacher impacted a student, or something similar.
Jamie said, “When we look at education and the ability for all to be able to have access to that, when we look at the impact that education has in building a community from a business standpoint, from a unity standpoint, from a prevention standpoint, from a youth service, from the earliest of children, education is critical to our community.”