Dist. 93 Hopefuls Cite Business, Parenting, Board Experience

Article excerpt

Q. If you are not an incumbent, what background, experience or point of view would you bring that the board now lacks?

Or, if you are an incumbent, what background, experience or point of view do you offer that's important to retain? What has been your most important contribution to the board and district?

A. Richard Boyer: Did not answer

Jeffrey G. Knoll: I am the parent to two young children, a working professional with broad technical and legal experience in large corporate and small-firm environments, and a long-term student with an educational background including private and public schools through post-graduate levels.

I have taught semester-long engineering courses at the University of Illinois and annually serve as a judge at my Lombard high school's science fair. As a member of the school board, I would enthusiastically bring the perspective of not only a concerned parent but an academic, an educator and a business-oriented realist.

Susan B. McNees: I am an independent thinker with ties to many different segments of the community, from long-standing residents to newcomers, from senior citizens to parents of school children, to young single adults. I feel that I can see issues from many perspectives and consider the "big picture."

To date, my most important contribution has been to serve on the negotiations committee for the current contract with the teacher's association, and to serve on the District Leadership Council, which was formed by that contract. Through these efforts we have increased the level of collaboration and trust between teachers and administrators and the board.

Thomas R. Petrich: During my four years on the board, I have been involved in several areas of which I feel proud to have been a part of or to have supported. For example:

In the area of finance, I have served on the finance committee, the last two years as the committee chairperson. Our district has worked within a balanced budget for more than 14 years straight. I, as well as other members of the board, are committed to maintaining a healthy financial status. But, within this balanced budget, I feel we have been fortunate to offer several new programs and fund them without eliminating other programs.

District 93 is fortunate to have a strong business office that supports the initiatives of the board while maintaining fiscal responsibility. In the area of curriculum, we have begun several new programs including foreign language, a specified art program, new music texts and support materials, and continued efforts to identify those areas of our curriculum which need further enhancement. As a member of the curriculum committee, I have been involved in the review and approval of these program/text changes. I also have worked with our curriculum and instruction department in reviewing the process our students are making in the state assessments.

The area that I feel has been the most important is in the area of instructional technology. During the past few years, technology has been a high priority of the board. I have served on the technology committee and have been involved in developing District 93's direction in this area. We have added hardware and instructional software to every classroom in our district. Building level administration and staff have been given the latitude to determine the location of these materials in their respective schools in a way that complements and supports the educational process in that building.

As we move forward in this area it will be necessary to stay on the cutting edge so that our students can be the best prepared in the use of technology as an enhancement to and in support of our overall curriculum.

I feel that my participation, support and encouragement in these areas I have listed above, as well as other areas, demonstrate that having an interest in all aspects of the educational process and our school district are the necessary qualities in a board member. …