Fred A. Dresser: Candidate profile
Geneva Unit District 304 School Board (4-year Terms)
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Note: Answers provided have not been edited for grammar, misspellings or typos. In some instances, candidate claims that could not be immediately verified have been omitted.
Office sought: Geneva Unit District 304 School Board (4-year Terms)
Family: Married to Deanne for forty two years. Two grown children (David & Amy)
Occupation: Retired from the Automotive and Truck industries after forty plus years.
Education: Associate Degree in Marketing. College: Macomb County Community College, Warren, MI
Civic involvement: Board Member for the Villas at Fisher Farms Homeowners Association. Board Member for the Fisher Farms Master Association
Elected offices held: None
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: Candidate did not respond
Key Issue 1
Candidate did not respond
Key Issue 2
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Key Issue 3
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What do you think about the shift to the common core standards? How big a role do you think the board of education should play in setting the curriculum for students and what ideas do you have for changes to the current curriculum?
The shift to common core standards across the nation is intended to bring more attention to the core subjects that today's students will need tomorrow if they are to remain competitive in the ever-changing job market.
Curriculum review and setting should be developed by the "front line" of education…the teachers. In addition, school administrators working in conjunction with the teachers should present to the board, and to the public, their recommendations as to the curriculum they would like to implement. The role of the board is to bring the educational community and the public together to decide the best curriculum for use in the Geneva School District for the benefit of the students.
How satisfied are you that your district is preparing students for the next stage in their lives, whether it be from elementary into high school or high school into college or full-time employment? What changes, if any, do you think need to be made?
Currently, the district has proven that the steps taken in the educational process are providing the students with the skills necessary to move on to college, a trade school or into the job market.
Additional focus on math, science, and technology will become increasingly important as the job market continues to evolve. Once menial tasks, as in manufacturing, now require that the individual has an understanding of the technology that is required to perform those job functions.
Regarding making changes, it's not prudent to make a statement without having all the facts. Not yet being privy to information as an official board member, I am not able to answer this question.
What budget issues will your district have to confront and what measures do you support to address them? If you believe cuts are necessary, what programs and expenses should be reduced or eliminated? On the income side, do you support any tax increases?
The major budgeting issue at this time is the debt that the district has. Without reviewing all the accounts associated with running the district or having done in-depth analysis, it would be difficult to make judgments as to the areas that might need to be adjusted without having all the facts.
Given the enormous debt the district has, the current state of the economy and the possibility that pension payments may be shifted to the district, it would be unfair to burden the taxpayer with additional taxation.
As contract talks come up with various school employee groups, do you believe the district should ask for concessions from its employees, expect employee costs to stay about the same as they are now or provide increases in pay or benefits?
The economy continues to struggle. The sacrifices made by individuals in the private sector (pay freeze, reduction in pay, reduction in benefits or job loss) make it difficult to justify increases in salaries and benefits at this time. Should the economy improve in the coming years, discussion of salaries and benefits can be reviewed to determine if the district can afford the financial expenditure without raising taxes.
If your district had a superintendent or other administrator nearing retirement, would you support a substantial increase in his or her pay to help boost pension benefits? Why or why not?
I would not support increases in pay to boost pension benefits at any time.
With the current pension problem in the state and the possibility that the pension burden may be shifted to the local school districts, why should the tax payer be required to pay for mistakes that were made by those in power?
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