Topics: Administrative, President

March 15, 2018

The following email from President Mearns was sent on March 15, 2018, to our students, faculty, staff, and alumni, regarding House Bill 1315. 

Dear Colleagues and Friends:

Late last night, the General Assembly concluded its legislative session without conducting final votes on HB 1315, the proposed legislation that would have given our University the responsibility of appointing a new school board to manage the Muncie Community Schools (“MCS”).

This result is very surprising, because both the House of Representatives and the Senate had approved this bill in recent weeks by very substantial margins. Apparently, the General Assembly simply ran out of time to consider the conference committee’s report, which was virtually identical to the bills both chambers had previously endorsed.

This result is also disappointing because it means that, for the next several years, MCS will be governed by an emergency manager as a “distressed” public school system. I am concerned that we may have squandered an historic opportunity to change the trajectory of MCS.

Notwithstanding this result, I am grateful to all of the people who supported this bill—many members of the General Assembly, community leaders, MCS school board members, and MCS teachers, staff, and parents, as well as Ball State faculty, staff, students, alumni, and friends. Your encouragement gives me great optimism for the future of our University and our community.

I also know that you and they share my abiding hope: that the children of Muncie will receive the excellent educational experience that they deserve.

Thank you.