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The latest Montana politics, elections and Legislature news.

Montana public employee union condemns state schools superintendent over leadership issues

A screen capture from a March 30, 2020 video update from State Schools Superintendent Elsie Arntzen.
A screen capture from a March 30, 2020 video update from State Schools Superintendent Elsie Arntzen.

Montana’s largest public employee union helped launch a petition Wednesday condemning the state’s chief of public instruction. It’s the latest volley in a growing controversy over Elsie Arntzen’s leadership.

The petition circulated by the Montana Federation of Public Employees denounces state school superintendent Elsie Arntzen as “failing Montana’s students, families, and educators.”

It simultaneously declares support for Montana’s largest district administrators and others who last week said Arntzen’s leadership has led to widespread turnover within the state education agency.

MFPE says the petition collected the signatures of over 2,000 Montanans in less than 24 hours.

Earlier this week, a letter drafted by two western Montana school trustees in support of Arntzen’s job performance generated well over 500 signatures, including those of over 20 Republican state lawmakers.

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