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.
Website: Candidate did not respond.
Office sought: Millburn District 24 School Board (4-year Terms)
Age: Candidate did not respond.
Family: Married with three children. One at Lakes and two at Millburn.
Occupation: Occupational Therapist
Education: B.A. Psychology, Northern Illinois University M.S. Occupational, Therapy Rush University
Civic involvement: Candidate did not respond.
Elected offices held: Millburn District 24 Board of Education Member, 2009-present Appointment: Special Education District of Lake County Executive Board Member 2011- present
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: no
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?
Students will greatly benefit from the adoption of the common core standards. Millburn is currently transforming the standards into a rigorous curriculum which will prepare our students for college or work in a technologically advanced global economy. It is imperative that the Board of Education ensure that resources are allocated to provide the teachers with the tools, time and training necessary to develop and implement the curriculum. Millburn teachers attend Common Core professional development days sponsored by the Regional Office of Education. A District wide Teacher Institute was recently held that focused on the Common Core and allowed for curriculum mapping at all grade levels. The Math Common Core Committee at the elementary school is currently looking at the best way to implement Common Core to 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?
For the past few years our district has ranked in the top 5% of Illinois State Achievement Test scores. Feeder high schools? honor rolls have a high percentage of Millburn students. Students receive a well-rounded education with top performing band, choir, sports, and other extracurricular groups. The transition to a common core curriculum will strengthen our students? academic achievement.
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 district has been confronted with a significant decline in revenue due to reductions in local, state and federal funding. With a commitment to fiscal responsibility, including the adoption of a policy that requires a balanced budget, the board has taken severe measures to reduce expenditures. In the past 4 years we voted to reduce approximately 45 certified staff, transition to grade level centers, eliminate an administrative position, and negotiate down non-instructional contracts. Unfortunately, the reduction of teachers has resulted in high class sizes that are difficult to sustain and will ultimately have a negative impact on student learning and achievement. Because maintaining the quality of Millburn's schools is a top priority I voted to approve a motion to place a referendum question on the April ballot. I believe the additional revenue is needed to offset the reduction in local, state, and federal education funding and help reduce the unsustainable high class sizes, provide the necessary resources to transition to a common core curriculum, and preserve band, choir, and other extracurricular activities
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 Millburn BOE is currently in contract talks with the teachers. I believe the teams will continue to bargain in good faith and negotiate a fair and economically sustainable contract.
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?
Taxpayers will no longer tolerate these types of raises.