North Bend Eagle

 

 

Six vying for school board

by Nathan Arneal
published 10/29/08

There are six people running for the three seats open on the North Bend Central Public School Board of Education. Below are each candidate’s answers to an Eagle questionnaire.

Jeff Alderson
Alderson

Jeff Alderson lives in North Bend and has served on the board since 2005. He as a daughter, Mary, in the eighth grade at NBC.

What would you say are significant issues you have dealt with during your time on the board and how you handled them? Grade School Addition. As the number of students increase in the lower grades, it was apparent that we needed a two-section-per-grade school in addition to other mandated needs. We were able to fund this project by using existing dollars while reducing the levy.

Roof replacement on both schools. This is a 10-year project that we are about 3 years into. This will also be accomplished without raising the levy.

Federal and State mandates for testing and reporting. I think the government has messed up the system causing our best people to put in a large chunks of time testing and reporting in a system that is not up and running and is changing every year.

What challenges do you see NBCPS facing in the near future and how do you propose dealing with them? I think a future challenge will be meeting the mandates of the government while allowing our staff to educate the kids. There is no fix until the state comes up with a system that works and stays with it. I am still amazed that individuals outside the field are calling the shots on how we should educate our children. The challenge is to retain good people through this process.

Challenge two will be the loss of experienced staff over the next five years and our ability to replace them with quality individuals. I think we have great facilities, course offerings and comparable pay to attract these individuals. We need to keep a close watch on this. It will be hard to replace the experience and quality we have now.

Challenge three is to payoff the current bond issue early and then look at how our high school will be fit to handle the next 20 to 40 years of educating. Our high school facility is about 40 years old. While it is in great condition, the way we teach and the way the school is equipped will have to change to meet the demand of educating over the next generation. This will include upgrades to computer and science labs, room design and communications. This will be the next large project. We need to pay off current debt to keep the levy down while approaching this issue.

Is there anything you’ve learned about the educational process during your time on the board? The thing I have learned about the educational process is that as a government and a board, we need to let the teachers teach and the administrators administrate. These are the qualified people that have the experience to educate our kids. We have been good about hiring the experience and with thought, we should listen to their recommendations. We are here to help meet these needs and to make sure the staff and kids are in a good environment.

Anything else? I did not run for the school board four years ago with a personal agenda. Understanding fiscal responsibility and having the ability to project out 10-plus years in order to meet the fiscal and educational demands of our district is a top priority. I believe I have the experience to balance the money with the operational goals and needs of our district. Thank you for your vote.

Mike Borer
Borer

Michael L. Borer of rural Morse Bluff has four children in the NBC system: Danielle, 8th grade; Zachery, 2nd grade; Bailey, 1st grade; and Lacy, kindergarten.

What prompted you to run for school board? I was asked to run by members of the community and with my background and education I felt I would be an asset to the board.

What makes you a qualified candidate for school board? I was an education major in college and received my BA degree in Industrial Technology with an emphasis on Industrial Technology and Coaching. I am an alumnus of NBC and have been a member of the community my entire life. I have four children attending the North Bend School system and am active in coaching wrestling and T-ball. I have done teacher observation for my degree in every school in the community including Wahoo, Bergan, Fremont, Columbus and North Bend. I was the assistant wrestling coach at Bergan High School for two years. As a maintenance engineer for Hormel Foods I have a lot of experience in maintaining the facility and its assets and managing budgets.

What challenges do you see NBCPS facing in the near future and how do you propose dealing with them? Economic: maintaining and controlling budgets so we are not wasting valuable tax dollars while still providing the best education for our students.
Qualified Teaching Staff: Keeping quality staff members in our system to meet the challenges of the student body. Keeping student/teacher ratios at a level that provides the best opportunity to learn for every child.
Curriculum: keeping it up to date so that our children are prepared for life after school. Making sure that we provide our teachers the proper tools to prepare our children.

Anything else? I am very proud of our community and our school system and I want to help maintain the highest standards possible for the youth in our community. As a parent with four children in the NBC school system I hold a lot of personal stock in the future of the school and therefore want to contribute however I can to help all the students at NBC obtain the best education possible. I feel I am very qualified to represent you on the NBC school board and look forward to the opportunity. Thank you.

Jim Dake
Dake

Jim Dake of rural Ames has two children, Justice, a fourth grader, and Liberty, a pre-schooler. He has served on the NBCPS Board since 2004.

What would you say are significant issues you have dealt with during your time on the board and how you handled them? Interviewing and hiring the principals of both the high school and elementary school. Working out he expansion at the elementary. Keeping a 40-year old building up to date with roof repair and other updating.

What challenges do you see NBCPS facing in the near future and how do you propose dealing with them? Finding a new superintendant when Jim Havelka retires. I hope to work with prior board members and parents to find another who will serve the district as well as Havelka.

Is there anything you’ve learned about the educational process during your time on the board? A public school system is the heart and soul of small towns. Keeping the staff and facility at the high level they currently are at is reflected in the students.

Anything else? I have really enjoyed serving these last four years. I have learned a lot and hope that I have contributed my knowledge and background to making this an effective board.

Mel Kreitman
Kreitman

Melvin Kreitman lives in rural North Bend and has three adult children.

What prompted you to run for the school board? Change starts here. Control spending. Common sense decisions.

What makes you a qualified candidate for school board? I’m a taxpayer and resident of North Bend since 1976. I have worked in the school system part time for many years and have considerable knowledge of the system.

What challenges do you see NBCPS facing in the near future and how do you propose dealing with them? I believe the future could mean less federal and state money, thus the need to tighten the belt on spending.

Anything else? As a candidate for the board I will work hard to maintain quality education with the least amount of taxpayer dollars.

Lisa Voss lives in North Bend and has a 10th grade daughter, Rachel Neisus, atteneding NBC.

What prompted you to run for the school board? I want to be a voice for the people. I want to vote as the people would. People meaning taxpayers, parents, guardians.

What makes you a qualified candidate for school board? North Bend Central alumni. I have a child in the North Bend school system and I want the best possible for her and everyone else’s child. I have a small understanding of the way the school runs and want to learn more. I won’t back down from something I or the people believe in. I’m not afraid to say NO!

What challenges do you see NBCPS facing in the near future and how do you propose dealing with them? Safety of our children in school. Anyone can walk into the high school right now and not be noticed. I know many people who have and it doesn’t sit well with us. I want to make it secure for our kids at school

Anything else? I will be available anytime as I am needed to listen and hear what the voters have to say. I am running for them, to be their voice. Thank you for your consideration.

Dan Wesely
Wesely

Dan Wesely of rural Morse Bluff has had to daughters, Jennifer and Melissa, graduate from NBC. He has served on the school board since 2001.

What would you say are significant issues you have dealt with during your time on the board and how you handled them? Closing and bringing all the elementary students to one school, reducing staff and dealing with bond issues for the addition to both schools. Also going through the interview process for two new principals.

What challenges do you see NBCPS facing in the near future and how do you propose dealing with them? One will be changing staff because of retirements. We have done this before. You need to search and find the best replacements for those retiring.

Dealing with the ever changing state mandates. We have a good staff that keeps up with these changes.

Is there anything you’ve learned about the educational process during your time on the board? Many things have been learned. You need to keep an open mind and work with many things that you may not be able to control.
Having a good staff that knows how the process works and being able to have good new hires to the staff makes the process keep running well and efficient.

Anything else? Thank you for allowing to serve on the board the past eight years. I know with the help of the rest of our board members, I can help NBCPS in the next four years run just as well.

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