Associate's Degree, Applied Science in General Printing, Ferris State College, Big Rapids, MI
Bachelor's Degree, Bach. of Science in Trade-Technical Education, Ferris State College, Big Rapids, MI
School Teacher, East Aurora School District 131
Married, Wife...Ginny Gaspar
On the Record
What experiences do you have that make you a good candidate for office?
I hope that being in education for the last 33 years will help me make good decisions if elected to the board. I am a good listener and try to analyze all the information before making a decision. If that means asking tough questions or have something explained again in layman’s terms, that is what I would do.
What are your top two or three priorities if elected?
First and foremost, is to be fiscally responsible to the citizens of District 101 and to keep a balanced budget that hopefully wouldn’t cause cuts, I, would also like to see if the district can get other funding to help ease some of the overcrowding in the schools. Also a sound curriculum on all levels and make sure that the common core standards are aligned with the curriculum. We need to make sure we have quality educators and make sure we hold on to those educators in a competitive atmosphere. We want to continue to have safe schools and environments for all students, employees and visitors of District 101.
Would you support freezing your taxing district\'s levy until housing prices rebound? Why or why not?
Tough question to answer at this time, without understanding all the impacts freezing has on the homeowners and school district. My goal is to keep a balanced budget like we do in our household. No one wants taxes raised, I don’t, however, I can’t in good conscious give an answer to that question at this time. If I did, I would be lying without having all the information before me.
What one decision by the school board do you most disagree with and why?
I really can’t say one item has stuck out for me. I think under the current financial situation a lot of tough decisions had to be made and I think the board tried to limit major cuts throughout the district. Yes, raising the taxes slightly was something no one wants, but if needed to run a balanced budget and keep the programs intact, I can understand. I think there is so much information that goes on behind the scenes that citizens don’t understand or see. There were other issues in the papers and in the board minutes that showed the board had to make tough decisions on. I heard citizens complain, about some of those decisions, and that is their right. I hope citizens can come up with meaningful solutions to help the board instead of just complaining. You are not going to please everyone, but if you do your best and be upfront with everyone, you should do a good job.
What was the biggest accomplishment of the board in the past year?
Well, I would say there are two, I think the listening post meetings, is a great idea. However, I was very disappointed in the number of citizens that showed up. I was at two of three meetings and the number of attendees made me sad. I understand people are busy, but if taxes and issues related to the schools are important and you only have 10-20 people in attendance, that is a sad! This is a good way to come out and present your issues and comments to the board. Under the law they cannot respond...it is the law, I hope they are taking these issues and comments back with them for future discussions. Second, I think the appointment of Dr. Hichens to be the next Superintendent was a great fit. I have worked with her during the last three years attending the PAC meetings at the high school and she is a good listerner, communicator and will try to find a solution to any issue.
Why should voters elect you to office?
Well, that is up to them! They can read all my answers and hopefully make a sound choice. I will say this...I am a good listener, will read everything and ask questions about everything that is presented to the board. You might not see it at board meetings, but it will be done at the committee levels. I won’t please everyone, but I hope I make sound decisions that will help the citizens and the students of District 101. I still want to be involved in education after I retire from teaching this June after 33 years. I also believe everyone should get involved with the community in some way by volunteering at the schools, joining groups related to your child’s education, or in the community at large.
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