AND SO IT BEGINS…MONTANA’S 66TH LEGISLATURE
The 4th President of the United States said, “The effect of a representative democracy is to refine and enlarge the public views, by passing them through the medium of a chosen body of citizens, whose wisdom may best discern the true interest of the nation.” I think President James Madison was telling us that elections are not the end of a process; that they are in fact the beginning. I think he was telling us that once the “body of citizens” has been elected, it is incumbent upon the public to share their views to ensure wise decisions are made on behalf of the people.
To that end, your GFPS leaders have been working to develop information for our legislators. We have developed a list of priorities for the upcoming 2019 legislative session and we are putting together data to support them. You can view the list of priorities by clicking HERE. Last Thursday night, we met with most of our local legislators over dinner to teach them about school funding and to explain our needs and priorities. They met the Cabinet members that can best answer their questions while they are contemplating the bills that will come before them during the session.
We didn’t do all the talking at the dinner, however. Our legislators told the group that they want to hear from all of us during the session…“all” meaning teachers, staff members, parents, students and community members. They understand that having good relationships with their constituents is important to success.
We think our relationships with our representatives are vitally important as well. We plan to enhance our relationships with them starting now and lasting right up through the last day of the session next April. Some of you may be called upon to provide information and I hope you will be open to sharing your expertise. This is important because wisdom is gained from experiencing many perspectives.
So while I am very relieved that the election ads and rhetoric are done, President Madison reminds me that the real work is just beginning. I hope you will join in as this important work will make it more likely that our legislators’ wisdom will serve our interests well. Elections matter, but the laws that are passed in legislative sessions matter even more.
Take care. Be safe. Stay well.