Posted on 25 April 2015.
City council and school board elections are Saturday, May 9, and early voting starts Monday, April 27, and runs through Tuesday, May 5.
The Messenger sent candidates questionnaires, and asked that answers be limited to 50 words.
School board candidates were asked to address the following:
1. Rank issues by importance and emphasis: academics, athletics, band and fine arts, facilities, technology, transportation, vocational programs
2. Rank groups as a resource for information in making decisions: administration, parents and teachers, taxpayers, fellow school board members
3. Primary reason for seeking a place on the school board: continue the direction and policies of the district, change the direction and policies of the district, lower the tax rate.
ALVORD SCHOOL BOARD
Occupation: Lease operator
Education: High school
Family: Wife, three boys and one girl
1. One is not more important than the other. There are lessons (life lessons) learned with the right teaching and coaching in, athletics, band and fine arts, vocational programs and of course, academics. It is also important to improve our facilities and stay current with the changing times and seems like nothing changes more often than technology. (Exceeded the word limit.)
2. Everyone plays a part. Parents have their child in school and want the best for their child as well as I do. Taxpayers, we put our money into the school, and we have ideas and would like our opinions heard. For nine to 10 months, teachers/coaches are around our children more than anyone. (Exceeded word limit.)
3. I graduated from Alvord. I have lived here most of my life. It’s time I give back to my school.
Occupation: Chemistry instructor, North Central Texas College
Education: BS, MS
Family: Spouse Marcia Wood (elementary teacher in the Northwest ISD); two children: Zack, 2007 Alvord High School graduate currently serving in the United States Navy at Pearl Harbor and Caleb, 2013 Alvord High School graduate, a junior at Texas State University and serving an internship in the Texas Legislature with District 123 Rep. Diego Bernal
1. Essential school management, as in business, includes setting goals/priorities. Board omission or emphasis of any one area (including food service and maintenance) without supporting data/information would be negligent. Data-driven identifiable district goals that focus on long-term student preparation and success are the most effective approach for a board member.
2. A school cannot function properly without measured participation from all of these groups. School personnel must be allowed to manage the school and provide relevant educational information; the school should seek parents/taxpayers input, but the board must ensure TRANSPARENCY under law allowing ALL groups access to the decision-making process.
3. Bringing a broad understanding of the educational process with experience in board procedures, public and higher education, I am committed to the future of the AISD by assuring all students are provided excellence of instruction and classroom teachers are provided every opportunity for training to address every student’s needs.
CHICO SCHOOL BOARD
Occupation: Small business owner
Education: Associates of Applied Science, North Central Texas College; Chico High School Class of 1997
Family: Wife Lana; daughters Kambree, Abby, Carly, Cara
1. Academics, vocational programs, athletics, band and fine arts, transportation, technology, facilities
2. Parents and teachers, taxpayers, administration, fellow school board members
All dependent on the decision at hand.
3. I feel that there are things that both need to stay the path and be addressed for change. In my opinion, this is an ongoing effort of balance. My goal is to help provide the best benefits to the student and faculty needs, while providing a balanced budget.
JAMES “PANCHO” REDWINE
Occupation: Department of Labor (mine inspector)
Education: Chico ISD graduate, 1982; Mine Safety and Health Academy graduate, 2014
Family: Married to Bonnie Redwine 26 years; J.D. and Jessica Redwine, past graduates of Chico ISD and current student of Chico ISD.
1. Academics, facilities, technology, transportation, vocational programs, fine arts and band, athletics
2. Taxpayers, parents, teachers, administration, fellow school board members
3. Continue the direction and polices of the district
We have a good direction and good policies in place. Even though they are good, they need to be continually updated as our district progresses.
Occupation: Owner/GM of PATH Oilfield Services, LLC in Chico
Education: High School
Family: Spouse – Missy (Ward) Patterson; Children – Hunter York, Alli York, Tanner York and Paisley Patterson
1. Of utmost importance are our children. They are our future. I believe that setting higher goals and standards in academics should be our first priority. In doing so, not only do we improve the quality of life of our kids, but for our community. Programs such as athletics, music, agricultural education and technology are of high importance as well. (Exceeded word limit.)
2. Input from everyone is important, but I believe teachers are highest in priority. They are on the front line. Their input can only better our kids when it comes to education and safety. I am looking forward to working with everyone from the board and administration but will make it a priority to open better lines of communication with parents.
3. My reasons for seeking election to our school board are simple … to improve and increase opportunities for our children when it come to their education and therefore improve the quality of life in the city of Chico. I would also definitely strive to maintain a fair and accurate tax rate for our citizens.
Occupation: Owner T Top Manufacturing, Chico and Bridgeport
Education: B.S. Industrial Engineering, Tarleton State University
Family: Wife of 26 years, Carrie; son and daughter-in-law Austin and Shaley Tate; daughter and son-in law Casey and Luke Plummer; daughter Corey at Texas Tech University; grandson Lane Aaron Plummer, 3; and granddaughter Cooper Shae Tate, one month
1. The students are the most important issue. Depending on their career path, each of the above items would play a different role of importance. We must provide the latest technology, a safe learning environment and a well-balanced curriculum to meet every child’s needs.
2. Every decision requires different input. Finances would require all of the above with the student’s behalf being the most important factor. Making decisions with student welfare as the top priority instead of personal agendas is what every board should strive for. Friends or family over the students is not right.
3. Continue to help keep the board focused on the student’s welfare as opposed to personal welfare. Our taxes are paid to produce quality-educated future leaders and providers, not make the district a family business. This is always a problem for small towns.
Occupation: Retired teacher
Education: Bachelor of Education, University of North Texas
Family: Sons J.D. and Jesse; daughter-in-law Alecia; grandchildren Natalie, Cain and Hayes
1. A quality education includes all these aspects. Academics should always be first. Vocational programs, athletics, band/fine arts and technology all create passions in our students to develop new career skills and interests. The importance of quality facilities and transportation cannot be underestimated because it means safety for our students.
2. I am a strong believer in local control. Our families, our faculty and our community know what is better for our children than an over-reaching, one-size-fits-all government. These stakeholders should all have strong, valued voices when it comes to the future of our school and community.
3. Our direction should always be toward excellence for our children and fiscal responsibility for our taxpayers. As a retired teacher, my heart loves kids and believes in education. My late husband, my sons and I are Chico graduates, and my granddaughter is a kindergarten Dragon. I believe in Chico ISD.
Education: Chico High School
Family: Spouse Terrisa; children Jessica Coffman and Melanie Tolliver
1. I feel that all issues related to the kids are important. However, academics are huge for me. If they have a good education, this will benefit them in all future endeavors.
2. I believe that we all must work together for the benefit of the children and community. Our kids are our future; therefore all decisions relating to them should be important.
3. My primary reason for seeking a place is to continue the direction of the district and to make sure that any and all decisions are for the benefit of the children, faculty and community.
DECATUR SCHOOL BOARD
Occupation: Independent agent with Stephens, Bastian and Cartwright, LP
Education: Master’s degree in business administration
Family: I have been married to my handsome husband Cary for three years. I am blessed to have two wonderful children, daughter Parker, 7; and son Jaxson, 5; both who attend Rann Elementary. I also have two step-children Matthew, 14; and London, 9; who attend the Keller ISD.
1. Academics, vocational programs, band and fine arts, technology, athletics, facilities, transportation
First and foremost, we must equip our students with the best possible academics. This goal must reach well beyond the goal of standardized testing and state funding objectives. Band, fine arts, technology and athletics are next in line because of the direct impact they have on producing well-rounded adults.
2. Parents and teachers, administration, taxpayers, fellow school board members
Parents’ and children’s interests must be kept paramount. They are why we exist and need a voice. Next I listed teachers. They are on the front line and are an invaluable resource. They must have a seat at the decision-making table.
3. There are many areas I feel where the direction and policy of our district is right on target. There are, however, concerns that have to be addressed, so that all of our schools are ranked exemplary and we stop losing as many children and teachers to private educational institutions.
DR. MATT JOINER
Dr. Matt Joiner
Occupation: Associate dean, Weatherford College Wise County
Education: Tarleton State University (Bachelor of Science in Education), Texas Woman’s University (Master of Educational Administration), Texas Tech University (Doctor of Education in Higher Education Administration)
Family: My wife, Kelly, a Registered Nurse, and I have been married since 2000. Our children are Trinity, age 10, a fifth grader at Rann Elementary, and Reagan, age 7, a first grader at Rann Elementary. My parents, Gerre and Jo, are also Decatur residents.
1. Academics, vocational programs, band and fine arts, athletics, transportation, facilities, technology Instructional coursework must always take precedence. Research demonstrates that students who involve themselves in fine arts and athletic activities are more successful inside and outside the classroom and in the longer term. The remaining three critical areas infuse themselves into every facet of education and are necessary for student success.
2. Parents and teachers, taxpayers, administration, fellow school board members
Each of these groups has a defined and important role to play in the educational achievements of our students. We’re each playing for the same team and for the same, non-negotiable, foundational goal – student success. Collaboration, communication and high-quality relationships will be key determinants in achieving our shared goal.
3. Continue the direction and policies of the district
Decatur ISD stakeholders must continue to commit themselves to continuous improvement and a future-oriented vision. We are blessed with financial and personnel resources as well as a supportive community. It is my goal to utilize these valuable commodities while helping to make an already-successful district even more effective in its efforts.