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.
City: Long Grove
Website: Candidate did not respond.
Office sought: Diamond Lake District 76 School Board (4-year Terms)
Family: Married with two children.
Occupation: Technology Consultant
Education: Bachelor of Science in Computer Science - College of Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, 1996
Civic involvement: Kids Soccer Coach
Elected offices held: Candidate did not respond.
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No
Key Issue 1
Key Issue 2
Technology for Students and Staff
Key Issue 3
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?
So far, the common core standards appear to be a beneficial shift not only for students and teachers, but also for parents who strive to understand the development and progress of their children. I think that that board's role related to the curriculum is to serve as a bridge between school staff and the parents in the community. This helps to ensure that the viewpoints of parents are represented and that the right information is shared with the parents/community.
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 believe the district has a strong commitment to doing what is needed to prepare students for their next stages and generally students are well prepared for the next stage. However, since the adoption of the common core standards is relatively new for our district, and for surrounding districts, it will take some time to determine the impact and what changes or modifications are appropriate.
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?
One of the budget issues we'll confront in the coming year is the extent to which the district can bring physical infrastructure up to current standards to support technological needs for the classroom and the staff. I'm aware of this based on the agendas from the most recent board meetings, to which the public was invited. Without having a deeper understanding of all the budget considerations yet, I cannot yet comment on expenses that may be reduced but in general revenue increases from taxes should be adopted after prudent expense reductions (those that least impact classroom instruction) are made.
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?
Obviously our employees are critical to the educational success of the district. However, I think the district should ask its employees to bear the same considerations as those made by taxpayers in the given district and to understand what we can afford. The financial health of our district and township depends on the commitment of all stakeholders employees, teachers, administrators - as well as the parents/taxpayers who provide taxes needed to support our schools. As signs point to stronger financial health of the district, it would seem that fewer concessions would be expected.
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 think the board's responsibility would be to determine whether the compensation and pension benefits already in place were appropriate, and make a decision based on those facts. Supporting substantial increases in compensation close to the time of retirement to help senior administrators enjoy a healthier pension does not portray the right optics to other stakeholders (i.e. teachers, parents and taxpayers) and would suggest poor planning. In general, it would seem that previous financial compensation and approved pension structure should be sufficient for pension benefits unless extraordinary unanticipated events occur.