Daily’s tirade forces recess in his, Berg’s final SKSD meeting

The Nov. 14 South Kitsap School Board meeting briefly spiraled out of control after outgoing director Jeff Daily expressed his final thoughts in a fiery “fifteen minutes of fame” statement concluded by his familiar call for all present directors and superintendent Tim Winter to resign.

Emotions were already on edge as it was the board’s first meeting since the results of the district’s latest attempt to pass a bond were announced. A simple majority has since been reached for the $271 million measure, but a 60% supermajority is required for passage.

The meeting also signaled the final time two incumbent directors would occupy their seats. District 2 director John Berg failed to advance past the August primary and District 5 director Daily announced in the final weeks of filing that he would not run. Those seats are expected to be filled by Megan Higgins and Jay Villars, while District 1 director Kate Espy has retained her seat as indicated by the polls.

While the remaining directors gave their thanks to Berg for his work on the board, the same could not be said for Daily, a common critic of the district and board.

He continued that message in a statement at the end of the meeting’s public comment period. He first thanked those in attendance for continuing to attend the meetings. “The board is responsible for educating the children of the district and to answer to all of you, not the agenda, not the policies they make up. It’s you that makes the community run,” he said.

Daily’s statement quickly dissolved into a tirade against the district, saying his departure will return the board to five nodding heads in agreement instead of any true conversation and debate. He also claimed the bond’s failure came down to the district’s lies to the public.

The statement continued well beyond his allotted three minutes, prompting calls from Berg and other directors to have Daily’s microphone silenced and have the director removed from the room. Daily appeared at one point to approach Berg’s table and attempt to bait Berg and Espy into physically escorting him out of the meeting.

Board president Jeffrey Wilson sent the meeting into a 10-minute recess, the audio on Zoom being cut. The rest of the meeting was conducted without Daily in the room, the microphone he had carried in his hands sitting in front of his vacant chair.