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updated: 2/22/2013 6:29 PM

James Perkins: Candidate Profile

Northwest High School District 214 School Board (4-year Terms)

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  • James Perkins, running for Northwest High School District 214 School Board (4-year Terms)

    James Perkins, running for Northwest High School District 214 School Board (4-year Terms)




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.

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BioKey IssuesQ&A



City: Arlington Heights

Website: Candidate did not respond.

Office sought: Northwest High School District 214 School Board (4-year Terms)

Age: 49

Family: Wife - Angie Married 22 years Daughter - Andrea, Hersey grad 2010, @ University of Wisconsin Son - Joseph, Hersey grad 2012, @ University of Iowa

Occupation: CPA

Education: Bachelor or Arts in Accounting, Economics from Augustana College, Rock Island, IL

Civic involvement: Active in St. Edna parish in several capacities, former youth sports coach, former mentor with Omni Youth Services

Elected offices held: District 214 Board Member since 2007 District 23 Board Member 2001 - 2004

Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: Candidate did not respond.

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

Maintaining fiscal responsibility during this increasingly difficult financial crisis at the state level.

Key Issue 2

Broadening the programs available to our students while staying within the guidelines of a balanced budget.

Key Issue 3

Candidate did not respond.

Questions & Answers

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 board has traditionally stayed out of curriculum decisions and has left those matters to administration. However, any major changes to the curriculum will be discussed with the board in an open session environment.

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?

I am very pleased with the work that District 214 has done to prepare our students for the next phase of their lives. Our ACT scores have risen nearly every year for the last nine years. Those students who are not college bound have many more opportunities for certifications through Harper College prior to their high school graduation.

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?

There is much uncertainty with the future of federal and state funding. In addition, the district is beginning to plan for the near certainty that the district will have to start paying for the pension costs of our teachers. Either situation could have an adverse affect on our budget. The remedies to deal with this will be the topic of many conversations and I do not know at this time what these might entail.

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?

I will not discuss anything regarding future contracts with any of our associations until we are officially in negotiations.

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?