Greeley OKs anit-CSAP bus benches
GREELEY – After two days of banishment, advertisements that encourage parents to opt their children out of the Colorado Student Assessment Program will be allowed back on Greeley bus benches. The signs that were purchased by the anti-CSAP group called the Coalition for Better Education were removed Wednesday – just two days after they were put up.”I felt invaded. I felt violated,” said Don Perl, a former teacher from Greeley-Evans School District 6 who leads the group. “What could be more unjust?” He said he is “delighted” that the advertisements will be allowed to return to the benches. His group has planned a rally for 11 a.m. today in front of the Lincoln Park Library, 919 Seventh St., where one of the signs was taken down. When the signs were taken down, the group contacted several media organizations and has been in touch with the American Civil Liberties Union. Chuck Esterly, Greeley public works director, said on Friday the signs were removed after an employee had a misunderstanding about what kind of advertising is allowed on bus benches. The benches are owned by the group NextMedia Outdoor Inc. which has a contract with the city. Esterly said the city regrets the removal of the signs and has already contacted the media group to say the signs can be put back up. “It’s unfortunate this got out of hand,” Esterly said. “We’re sorry and apologetic and hopefully the signs will go back up.”He said an employee had misunderstood the contract with the media company and thought that political advertising was not allowed on the benches. There is no such policy. The signs place the letters “CSAP” in a red circle with a diagonal line through it and say “Parents, we can do something about this injustice.” Underneath, the signs direct parents to the coalition’s website, which provides letters parents can use to opt their children out of the test.
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