We have new information about the controversial 13-percent pay raise offered to Missoula Schools Superintendent Alex Apostle.
NBC Montana was there last Tuesday when community members packed a Missoula high school gym to speak out against it; now we have confirmed that Dr. Apostle did accept the raise.
Apostle tells us he took the raise because he feels he deserves it.
“I accepted the raise based on my performance, based on a very specific evaluation instrument and the board based on that evaluation process granted me the raise,” he said.
Apostle says he’s glad people voiced their concerns to him but he feels it’s time to move past the controversy.
“We have great staff and I believe that we will overcome this disagreement and our concern and move on for the benefit of our students because that's what it's all about,” said Apostle. “I believe we have a very professional staff that will do just that.”
But some community members feel their concerns about Apostle’s pay raise are being brushed under the table and their questions left unanswered.
“I was very disappointed and discouraged that not one word that was said was heard,” said Sentinel High School senior Danielle Gornick. “I don't think he's really taking to heart the words that are coming out of people's mouths that are upset about this.”
Gornick tells us students are planning to keep fighting the raise.
“We’re going to keep going with this and Dr. Apostle can expect to see us in the future,” she said.
“Maybe the students didn’t hear exactly what they wanted to hear but I appreciated the opportunity,” said Apostle.
In other business at Tuesday’s meeting, Apostle and school board members chose a new trustee. Missoula parent Scott Todd will now be sitting on the board effective immediately.