POP QUIZ: When is Elsie Arntzen going to speak the truth?

If given a quiz about the truth of her own public remarks, the self-described “A+” Superintendent would instead earn an “F.” Here’s why:

  1. She claimed she’s not getting rid of Graduation Matters Montana. FALSE: Her staff said the program was being phased out and removed the website from OPI.

  2. She claimed she was a school principal who ran successful school carnival fundraisers. FALSE: She was never a school principal (we’re not sure about the carnival part).

  3. She claims her words have been misconstrued by the press. FALSE: Transcripts attached to the stories show her words were never misconstrued.

  4. She claimed there was federal investigation of the Office of Public Instruction on ACT testing used for assessments. FALSE: Turns out it’s just a human resources review of procedures.

  5. She said she would never “impede” public preschool in Montana. FALSE: When serving in the Legislature she signed a letter urging the Governor to reject federal grant money for public preschool.

She continues to be dogged by Montana press for her incoherent public statements and false claims.

“Heads ducked behind hands to whisper frustration, brows were furrowed, some — quite audibly — rebuked the superintendent for avoiding the question and speaking in an indecipherable stream of consciousness.” -- Great Falls Tribune on 2/2/17.

“Arntzen's blame-the-media play was lame and hardly original. It tried to distract from the fact that Graduation Matters is indeed being phased out or relegated. Arntzen is simply upset that her actions have been made public.” -- Billings Gazette editorial board on 2/3/17


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