School board election planned for June 2

Sarah Ebeling | Managing Editor
sebeling@ncppub.com

On Tuesday, June 2, the Parker School District will host their school board election. Due to COVID-19, the event was postponed until next month.
Polls will be open from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. and voting will take place at Parker Community Building in Parker.
Voters can also vote absentee if they do not wish to vote in person. A mail-in ballot was sent out via the Secretary of State’s office or individuals are able to stop by the school’s business office and vote absentee as long as they have a photo ID.

Jason Chester
Why are you running to be a member of the school board? I enjoy being part of the board and helping our school maintain its high quality of education.
Why do you think you are qualified? I’m a lifelong Parker community member and supporter of our school.
What one thing would you like to do if elected/re-elected? I don’t have a specific agenda, you have to work with your fellow board members and the staff to meet challenges as they arise.
What are some things you feel the school district is doing really well? Parker has always maintained high academic standards, while there is always room for improvement I think our school can be proud of the educational innovations that have been implemented.
What is a challenge you see in the school district and what support can you offer in that challenge? There are always budgetary challenges, and with the discussion of a large building project at some point in the future there will be a lot of time spent working with those numbers. I have experience working with the school budget and feel that the current board has done a good job of trying to provide the best school experience possible while being mindful of the fact that we’re working with taxpayer dollars.
Have you served on the school board before and if so, for how long? I have served on the board for nine years.
What goals do you have for the school district? I would like to see our school have some more technical options, we use the CTE Academy but it would be nice to have more of those classes in house. On a budgetary note, I would like to see our school to continue to run without an opt out.
What makes you a great candidate for the school board? I take things in stride, most problems can be worked through with a little common sense!

Jay Sanner
Why are you running to be a member of the school board? I am very interested in being involved in the process, as it has always been an interest of mine. This last year I was contacted by members of the community, including students, parents and grandparents asking me to become involved and run for this position. I decided, now that I no longer have children in the district, this was the right time for me to become involved.
Why do you think you are qualified? I am a 1983 graduate of Parker High School. I have been self employed in this community for 30 years. I have invested in this community and school district by volunteer coaching, sponsoring, mentoring and have established relationships with the students and staff at PHS. I am not only a fan in the crowd at sporting events, I am very interested in seeing that our school remains a district leader. I believe our school is a marketing tool to welcome new families and new businesses on Main Street.
What one thing would you like to do if elected/re-elected? Work to bring the district back to a Blue Ribbon status by focusing on a strong commitment to increasing our state testing scores. Which would mean giving the staff the tools and resources they need to accomplish this goal.
 What are some things you feel the school district is doing really well? I am very impressed with the way the district handled the current pandemic. They closed the school for the safety of our staff and students but immediately had plans in place for online and home learning. Although none would say it was what they wanted or expected, I believe they did an excellent job continuing to teach and provide distance learning. I also feel that the continued lunch program for our students was very important and job well done.
What is a challenge you see in the school district and what support can you offer in that challenge? I expect the biggest challenge in the future will be state funding. Our revenues are already 50 percent behind due to COVID. How the state deals with the shortfall could drastically impact school districts. Once we learn how that funding impacts us, it will be the board’s responsibility to focus that funding in the most productive and efficient way to help our students and staff.
Have you served on the school board before and if so, for how long? No.
What goals do you have for the school district? As I mentioned earlier, improving our testing scores to make us a Blue Ribbon School is one goal. Give staff and students the tools that they need to be successful. I have also heard from students and parents that they would like to have better student/teacher relationships. I would very much like to be on the board and be creative in finding ways to make students excited to come to school, to learn and to be proud members of our district and representatives of our school.
What makes you a great candidate for the school board? Confidence with my decision making. Relationships within the community. Provide a new prospective. I think I am open minded and want to work with the other board members to promote the district but still protect the taxpayer.

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