1 What can you do to help every LSR7 child succeed? Be specific

As a member of the Board of Education, I will support the systems in place to analyze data regarding student progress. I will work to ensure the programs in place to help our children succeed are functioning appropriately and at a high level. And I will support and provide input to the superintendent and district leadership.

2 Do you support the dual enrollment plan? Explain your position

I support the Innovation Track. This opportunity will make an enormous difference in opportunities available to our students. College can seem out of reach for many students. The Innovation Track is a way for students to receive the credit they deserve that would otherwise be unavailable to them.

3 What is the role of a board member?

The main responsibility of a member of the Board of Education is to look out for students. I believe it will be my job to continue to incorporate community concerns and needs into the decision-making process of the Board. I have a responsibility to the patrons of the district to ensure students are getting the best education possible in exchange for the support they give the district.

4 What voice should stakeholders have in district policy making?

All stakeholders are represented when they vote to elect our Board of Education. In addition to that representation, stakeholders should find ways to engage with the district in collaborative ways. Stakeholders can choose to be involved in parent groups such as PTA, Athletic Boosters, Lee’s Summit Educational Foundation, Partners in Education, Theater and Music Parents, as well as committees for the district. These groups have the ear of administrators and Board of Education members.

5 Do you or would you uphold district board norms?

As these norms were collaboratively developed and unanimously approved by the Board of Education, I plan to uphold all of them. Being prepared for meetings, submitting questions ahead of time to allow the superintendent and his staff to properly answer them, being confidential, and showing respect to each other and the LSR7 staff are reasonable expectations in a collaborative body. If I have an issue with one or more of the norms, I will follow them until it can be discussed with the group in an appropriate manner.

6 What would you or have you done to achieve the board’s three goals? Be specific.

The three LSR7 Board of Education goals are: increase student learning and achievement, ensure equitable access to 21st century learning environments, and strengthen public trust in the district’s governance leadership team. These collaboratively-created goals are appropriate for any school district, but especially a high-achieving district such as ours. I am appreciative and impressed with the professional and thorough quarterly updates on each goal given by the district leadership.

To increase the learning and achievement of every child, I will make sure the district stays focused on the “every” part of this goal. Committing to the achievement of individual students is very different than committing to broad groups. It requires focused dedication at every level.

The district has made proper financial, instructional, and physical changes to ensure equitable access to 21st century learning environments. I will continue supporting these endeavours as a board member and will look for ways to continually improve district performance and outcomes.

Finally, to work on strengthening public trust in the district’s governance leadership team, I will collaborate with my fellow board members in a transparent and respectful way. I will work to improve our systems and procedures for communication throughout the school district and be available to patrons to hear concerns.

7 What can we do as a newspaper, school district, and community to help prevent bullying and suicides among our grade school and high school students?

What we can do to help prevent bullying and suicides among our students is to look at the entire continuum of the behaviors that lead up to the extreme of being a bully, getting bullied, or suicide. We need to continue to support various systems (such as the Safe Schools Alert) for anyone to anonymously report extreme or dangerous behaviors. We need to make sure we communicate school and community resources to parents and students to help individuals and families. We also need to address issues in our schools that keep students from connecting with adults or activities that could be the needed connection to the community. This will require us to analyze the effectiveness of our support systems and possibly add staff such as counselors and social workers. These professionals are the first line of defense in protecting our children.