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updated: 2/22/2013 6:05 PM

Tina Bleakley: Candidate Profile

Batavia Unit District 101 School Board (4-year Terms) (Republican)

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  • Tina Bleakley, running for Batavia Unit District 101 School Board (4-year Terms)

    Tina Bleakley, running for Batavia Unit District 101 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: Batavia

Website: Candidate did not respond.

Office sought: Batavia Unit District 101 School Board (4-year Terms)

Age: 44

Family: My husband John and I have been married for 17 yrs. We have 3 daughters, Kelly 13, Allison 12 and Amy 10.

Occupation: I am a social worker. I work for Mutual Ground Inc., in Aurora.

Education: Bachelor of Social Work, Illinois State University, 1991 Elementary Education Certification, Elmhurst College, 1994

Civic involvement: Candidate did not respond.

Elected offices held: Grace McWayne PTO President 2008-2011 Chair, Batavia Interschool Council 2011-2013

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

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

Ensuring Batavia stays a top performing district.

Key Issue 2

Maintaining the small town feel in our Batavia schools and community.

Key Issue 3

Having the best administrators and teachers working for our district, benefiting our students.

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 of Educations role is to focus on administration, ensuring that the districts mission, vision and goals are being met. Therefore, I believe that the BOE's role in setting curriculum should be minimal, trusting our experts in administration and the classroom teacher to collaborate and create the best learning environment. If the correct administrator is in place then the board should allow them to do what is best for the growth and development of all students and faculty. My ideas for any change to curriculum would be whatever benefits our students in taking them to the highest level of excellence.

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?

There is always room to improve how well a student is prepared for the future. I think our district does a wonderful job preparing students for the next stages of their educational paths. I think if any changes were to be made it would be to do more research on what colleges and employers are looking for from prospective candidates. We could look for any gaps in our programs to help the students in career choices and future occupations. I would also like to see the elementary students eased into letter grades before they enter the middle school.

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 believe budget issues and tax increases are a concern in every district. State funding and teacher pensions will be something we may have to tackle. We have a balanced budget in Batavia. Our finance director and administration worked very hard to achieve that goal and I fully support them. I do support a tax increase if it is a benefit to our schools and student learning. Employing the best teachers, smaller class sizes, and having various programs available to students is what keeps Batavia a top performing district.

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?

BPS101 has had the privilege of having employee groups that have offered concessions before the district ever had to ask. The first year BPS had a budget deficit the teachers union gave back a substantial sum from their contract and made contract concessions in our last negotiations. Therefore I am confident that we will continue to work collaboratively with all employee groups to do what is best for our students.

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 be in support of a substantial increase in pay to help boost pension benefits.