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updated: 2/22/2013 6:28 PM

Mardell Schumacher: Candidate Profile

Elk Grove Township District 59 School Board (4-year Terms)

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  • Mardell Schumacher, running for Elk Grove Township District 59 School Board (4-year Terms)

    Mardell Schumacher, running for Elk Grove Township District 59 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: Elk Grove Village

Website: Candidate did not respond.

Office sought: Elk Grove Township District 59 School Board (4-year Terms)

Age: 80

Family: Married, 2 children and 2 grandchildren, 10 and 6 years old

Occupation: Retired Teacher Retired Merchandising Mgr.

Education: BA from Cornell College, Masters' class/Northwestern

Civic involvement: Two and a half decades on the CCSD59 Board of Ed

Elected offices held: Charter Pres. Elk Grove Jayceettes Charter Pres. Grove Jr. High P.T.O. Past Pres. CCSD59 Board of Education

Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: NO

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

I have spent my life in the field of education--- teaching, volunteering in the schools, and on the Board of Education. Being sure that all children have every opportunity to learn and have a broad range of exciting educational opportunities is my prime focus.

Key Issue 2

Candidate did not respond.

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?

Common Core Standards is a State prescribed program as opposed to NCLB which is Federally mandated. Although NCLB goals are creditable, from the beginning many goals were unattainable mostly due to prescribed groupings of students. The methods used for improving scores were quite punitive. I'm hoping for better results from Common Core Standards.

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?

Curriculum is set by District Administration. It is the Board's role to assess the results and ask for changes when necessary. For years I have suggested that our Spanish speaking 3 and 4 year olds be taught in English. Preschoolers of this age are like sponges. Since they are being taught by certified teachers, it is my contention that they would learn English more quickly if the ESL method was used. Presently they are not taught English until they reach kindergarten.

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?

I am always watchful for unnecessary or unwise use of taxpayer dollars. I do not support tax increases at this time and have asked for the levy to be lowered the last two years.

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?

We are just beginning negotiations with two employee groups. Obviously, the State Pension System will have to be fixed. Poor management always catches up with you, and the State has a big job ahead of it. District 59 doesn't know as yet how it will affect us.

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?

Our superintendent recently retired. Presently, we have hired an interim superintendent and a new superintendent for the 2013-2014 school year. We are working with them to have a framework in place to sustain and enhance our successes and provide relevant educational opportunities for all students in this rapidly changing world. I will continue to work enthusiastically on the District 59 School Board and pledge to work for the benefit of all the people in the four communities which are served by District 59.