S-GI is a district that covers 140-plus square miles, nine taxing districts in two counties, two hamlets, one small town and three school voting districts. Its citizens have a great diversity in educational background, income and employment. The students mirror that diversity and so should the board of education.
In the 25 years that I served on the board of education. my fellow board members lived in Colden, Glenwood, East Concord, Concord township, Collins Center, the village of Springville and Sardinia. They were blue-collar, white-collar and professional; single, married, divorced and widowed; homemakers, retirees and people from the agricultural community; struggling, middle class and well-off. There were parents of children in private and/or parochial school, parents of children who attended district schools and some with no children. Their education backgrounds ranged from high school graduates to PhDs. Some of them were graduates of S-GI and some weren’t. Some worked in the community and some commuted to outside of the district.
There were board members who came with special interests or knowledge: special educations, the arts, sports, gifted and talented, medicine, science, business and finance, to name a few. Some of them had contested elections and some were uncontested. All of them, no matter how they were elected, came to the board table, bringing their diverse interests and knowledge, to work together to provide the best education for all the children, with a fiscally prudent framework.
They represented the broad spectrum of the school district that they served. The possibility for diversity on the board has been reduced. The board’s ability to assign members to cover the necessary committees has been compromised. And the question of whether a majority of three is appropriate to make the important decisions for a district as geographically large and economically diverse as S-GI remains.
There is no fiscal consequence to increasing the size of the board of education since members are unpaid.
I believe that a five member board of education has reduced the representation of the whole S-GI community. We need to return to a seven member board of education. I strongly urge you to vote YES on Proposition #3.