Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Five Seek 3 Board Positions Effectiveness in the Face of Obstacles Is an Issue

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Five Seek 3 Board Positions Effectiveness in the Face of Obstacles Is an Issue

Article excerpt

The effectiveness of the Ladue School Board has become an issue in this spring's campaign for three seats on the board.

Five candidates are seeking three seats on the board in the election April 2. Three of the candidates - Linda Sher, Bob Adler and Nancy Albert - are incumbents. The other candidates are Gary Growe and Susan Miller Nuetzel.

In the past year, members of the Ladue board have disagreed over use of school buildings by outside groups, financial procedures and even the order of filing for next month's election. Some candidates have questioned whether board members could work together well enough to deal with problems.

Whoever gets elected to the board will deal with uncertainty about funding, including any decision about the future of the voluntary desegregation program. Also, school officials have predicted the district will run out of money and need to ask voters for help in two or three years.

Nuetzel, 44, said uncertainties associated with the future of desegregation and school aid formulas make it a critical time for the district.

She said the current board had taken too long to make a final decision on the use of school facilities by outside groups.

"The board does not have the confidence of the community," Nuetzel said. "We need to be able to all work together in a professional manner so we can deal with key issues . . . My concern is the board makes issues out of things for political hay."

Observers say board members have screamed at each other at board meetings and questioned each other's motives.

Nuetzel would like to see more information, including copies of plans, made available to the public at board meetings.

Another candidate, Growe, 44, said the board has gotten off track. "It has devoted too much time to issues that are more political in nature and not enough time to the quality of educational services," he said. …

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