Opinion: ACSU candidate has strong unified board background
I am running for a seat on the proposed Addison Central School District board.
I am a seventh-generation Vermonter who also has decades of experience with single-board public schools in New York state, both as a student and as a teacher.
I have been a member of the UD-3 school board (a unified board) since 2005. I have served on committees on finance, facilities, policy and contract negotiations. I wrote UD-3 policies on student outcomes, the first such policies in ACSU.
In 2009 I founded the ACSU Policy Committee, and have been its chair ever since. This committee has provided policy drafts and advice to ACSU’s nine boards, increasing the number of policies with identical language across all boards, as well as keeping required policies up to date. That said, I’d be delighted to toss out all that work, because changing to a single board eliminates the need for policy coordination.
I have often attended the Vermont School Boards Association annual state conference, conferring with fellow board members, helping to represent UD-3 in the VSBA Annual Meeting, and learning about the board role in public education.
I have been an advocate for a single board for many years. I have testified before both the Vermont House and Senate education committees on the subject.
I have been active in our community in other ways as well, serving as president of the Middlebury Actors Workshop board, treasurer of the Ripton Historical Society, conductor of the Middlebury Community Wind Ensemble, and frequent teacher at Elderly Services.
I know first-hand the emotion that Vermonters have about their towns. But I was raised also knowing the Vermont tradition of practicality. ACSU has actually been a unified education system for a long time, with a single superintendent and a single graduating class. Governance at the secondary level has been unified for decades. I am excited about the idea of elementary boards joining — about the evidence-based possibilities for creativity, efficiency and enhanced student opportunity such a union will bring. I offer my experience with unified boards and policy to contribute to our new board from the beginning.