Article on ballet dispute had the facts wrong | Letter to the Editor
October 4, 2011 · 12:47 PM
Your article (“Ballet program founders in the wake of a tough dispute,” Sept. 21) contained many inaccuracies including:
Betsy’s tenure on the Island — not merely a decade but 17-plus years serving the community.
Betsy sought mediation on three separate occasions to no avail; the hostile side refused, saying there was nothing to mediate.
Betsy did not walk out of the “stormy” meeting but in fact was one of the last to leave after staying to console Kamela on her “rough week.” Betsy did not dissolve the board but was asked if she wanted to dissolve to which she answered, “Yes, I cannot work with it in its present structure” and then the board voted to dissolve.
The park district’s Susan McCabe told Kamela it couldn’t be dissolved without parks involvement, which just gave Kamela one more reason to keep moving; Susan also told Kamela that Betsy was their employee and they could fire her at will. Wrong!
Betsy did step down from teaching regular ballet classes but NOT the production end of it.
Parks failed to give Betsy the meeting she requested between the three entities; she was called late one Thursday evening being told the meeting was the next day at 11 a.m.; Betsy had a doctor’s appointment and could not attend. The meeting went on without her, this after being told by Wendy Briacks earlier that it would not happen without her. Subsequent attempts to reschedule were given no attention. In fact the Parks signed a contract with VICB on Aug. 16.
Parks has continued to aid/abet this hostile board, including speaking with their (VPD) lawyer while we, VJCB, have been given no opportunity to speak.
Parks has exhibited poor judgment/poor leadership in this matter.
— Pam Saunders-Osness