district 39 wilmette school board
responses to voter guide questions
1. Why are you running for school board and what are your qualifications?
It has been an honor to serve on the D39 Board of Education for the last four years with the past two as president. I have been involved in education at every stage of my professional career as a teacher, principal and most recently as a supervisor of student teachers through Northwestern. I am eager to continue to draw on my background in school leadership to serve our Wilmette students, schools and community.
2. What are your top priorities for D39 and what do you hope to accomplish as a board member?
We are two years in to our Strategic Plan. I am committed to helping the district pursue these ambitious goals that emerged out of a collaborative, comprehensive community-wide process. As a member of our District Strategic Advisory Team (DSAT), I know how focused our staff and administration are on reaching our key performance indicators.
One of the board’s primary roles is to be responsible stewards of our community’s tax dollars. Our district continues to earn the highest Financial Recognition for financial stability. In addition, we are implementing a long term capital planning process to maintain our facilities and to examine resource allocation practices, including staffing, based on best instructional models and techniques.
3. How should D39 address the different needs of all students?
The first crucial step to meeting the varying needs of all students is to know them well across all domains. To do this with integrity, assessments must include a wide variety of formal and informal tools, including but not limited to standardized testing. As part of the strategic plan, we have invested in training teachers and administrators to analyze data effectively and on a regular basis. They are also in the process of auditing assessments in different areas of the curriculum.
Once we understand the needs of our students through these assessments, we need a comprehensive approach to support, strengthen and challenge appropriately. I am excited and optimistic about the recent focus our district has placed on solidifying our MTSS (Multi-Tiered System of Supports). Each building has created an MTSS team and we are committed to providing ongoing training and support to these teams throughout the year. This approach ensures that we provide the appropriate instruction, review and enrichment that each child needs. I encourage interested community members to read this section of our strategic plan for more detailed information. https://sites.google.com/wilmette39.org/strategic-plan-2021-26/2021-26-strategic-plan
4. What are your views on D39’s curriculum?
I appreciate the robust curriculum review process that D39 has in place. Each academic area, as well as Social Emotional Learning, is reviewed on a regular basis, allowing us to continue to improve on what is working well and to integrate the most current research based methods. When we look at data, I am particularly proud of the shift we have had on growth as well as achievement. Looking at student progress through this lens helps us ensure we are meeting each child’s needs and shows us where we need to direct attention.
5. What do you feel the community’s role is in public K-8 education?
Partnership between schools and the community is critical. As a board, we aim to be as transparent and approachable as possible.
Our schools cannot serve our children well without open, productive partnerships with families. Families know their children best and are their strongest advocates. Our professionals at school have the privilege of seeing children in a different environment. As a parent, I have always felt that my children have been well known and understood by their teachers in D39. There is no greater gift.
We value these partnerships between parents, students, teachers, administrators, staff and the broader Wilmette community and will continue to look for opportunities to work together.