Saturday, March 1, 2014

Know Your Candidates Part 2

We have 3 people vying for two seats on the school board.  Incumbent School Board President is running for re-election.  The open seat was vacated by two-term school board member Jill Camber-Davidson, who has certainly "done her time". does one decide?
There are some questions that should be asked:

What do we know about these folks?

How engaged in the school district and school board affairs are our 2014 candidates?

Are they well versed on all the issues?  Or just one or two in particular?

Basically....we should be asking the question: what have you done for us lately to show that you are actively engaged in the many aspects of school district affairs.

Let's take 'em alphabetically, shall we?

Carol Albright [Gobeli?]
We know that Ms. Albright is a former teacher who retired several years back.  We know her forte was Spanish at the middle and high school level.  We know she is a member of SPARC...the local liberal grassroots political movement.
 But that's about all we know.  Until recently we had not even seen her at a school board meeting.  So why the interest now?  We get that it's hard to be involved while one is a teacher and thus employee of the district.  But, since she retired in June 2010 wouldn't one think that she's had nearly 4 years to "come out" and be involved in school board affairs?  Maybe serve as a citizen representative on a board committee?  How about even a a teacher representative on one of the older committees?  Going back to 2005, we can't find any indication of involvement.
And as a teacher of Spanish, does she understand the non-curriculum issues the board/district face daily?  Human Resources issues (after all, SPASD is in the top two employers in Sun Prairie)?  Where does she stand on Ashley Field?  Has she ever been to Ashley Field?  What about Buildings and Grounds issues?
In short, we have a lot of questions and not very many answers.

Jessica Moehr
Ms. Moehr currently serves on the school board's Performance and Operations Committee and previously served on the other Board Committee: Planning.  Prior to that she served on the Board's Human Resources Committee.  Especially with the new committee format, Ms. Moehr has been involved in and gained familiarity with all facets of district operations.  She also is a mother of two children currently in the district, which is another thing departing board member Jill Camber-Davidson brought to the table.  In her "day job", Ms. Moehr is a Human Resources (HR) professional; and those paying attention know that HR is an element of district operation that has come under great scrutiny in the past year.  In a nutshell, we view Ms. Moehr as being perfectly positioned to step into board seat.

Tom Weber
Board President Weber has done more for this district than any other president at least since we've been paying attention.  He is engaged in the district, has kids in the district, and spends countless hours working towards resolution of critical issues.  He also serves as a liaison to the City Council and has helped repair what had been a very fractured relationship.
We credit Mr. Weber's leadership for helping the school board (well, at least 71.4% of it) turn the corner from being a bunch of rubber stampers to being one of the most respected school boards in the state.  This board does its homework.
We've gone from being a "Whatever You Want, Dr, Culver" mentality to one that is truly data driven: Tell us what it is you desire and then SHOW us the data that supports the need.  Then bring to us a plan o how you plan to pay for it.