Carefully choose school trustees

2010-05-04T00:00:00Z Carefully choose school trusteesDENISE JUNEAU Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction The Billings Gazette

Today, you will elect school board members for your local district and vote on mill levies to support your local school. The vote you cast is vitally important to your community’s future. In a recovering economy, it is especially important to focus on the next generation and make sure our students have the skills and knowledge to compete in the global economy.

You have an opportunity to ensure a quality education is provided to students and to bolster Montana’s economy by voting in school board elections and on local mill levies.

School boards are very powerful elected bodies. They deal with multimillion dollar budgets and make policy decisions that establish the vision for our schools. They make critical choices such as hiring the superintendent and administrators responsible for establishing the organizational and operational structure needed to create a positive learning environment. School boards decide everything from establishing bus schedules to determining the length of the school year. Your vote in local school board elections determines the future of all students in your community.

School boards play a large role in student achievement. They establish goals for student achievement and evaluate student progress. They are responsible for adopting policies that affect all schools and students in the district. Researching each candidate’s views on positions is essential. Here are some questions to consider when evaluating a candidate:

Does the candidate understand the role of the school board in promoting academic excellence?

Does the candidate understand all the issues facing the school district; both educational and economic challenges?

Will the candidate bring additional skills to the board and represent the diversity of the community?

Will the candidate be able to do what is right for all children, even if it requires making unpopular decisions?

There is much at stake today. Members of your school board must be dedicated to serving all children of your community. They must believe in the value of public education and understand their strategic role in promoting the best interests of the entire school community. When schools flourish, Montana’s students achieve academic excellence and our entire state benefits.

Please make your voice heard today by voting in school board elections and on local mill levies.

Copyright 2015 The Billings Gazette. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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