In this article, you will get all information regarding Two candidates filed for the two-year seat
On November 8, voters in the Farmington Public School District will choose one person to serve on the school board for two years. Voters will also choose three candidates for six-year terms.
Members of the school board oversee the district and report to body superintendent Christopher Delgado. The school board does not conduct day-to-day operations; This is the role of the superintendent.
Hometown Life sent each candidate a questionnaire today on their views and the state of the district. Especially long answers were shortened, which is indicated with an ellipsis.
Michelle Bushe I am a teacher and first time candidate. Her volunteer experience includes working with her church and the Woodbrook Hills Swim and Tennis Board.
Claudia Heinrich The board is running for a second two-year term. She is retired, but spent her career as a math teacher. Henrik has also been active in community groups such as the PTA, Jessie Women and Girl Scouts.
There is also one person running as a write-in candidate in the district: Karl Mintz, Hometown Life’s questionnaire was also sent to Mintz, but Mintz did not respond.
What makes you eligible to be a member of the school board and why do you want to be on that position? What do you see as the role of a member of the school board?
Bushy: I hold a BS in elementary education and a master’s degree in special education, I have been in education for more than 20 years as a teacher in multiple grade levels. I spent a lot of time reviewing and selecting curriculum for multiple grade levels and subjects. I’ve participated in a number of collaborative team environments, both in the school system and on other boards. I am very dedicated and invested in serving the community of Farmington Hills. I am also a parent of three school children. ,
Heinrich: I have worked in school board since January 2020. In June of 2022 I received a Certified Board Member Award and Award of Merit from the Michigan Association of Schools Boards. The role of a school board member is to act as a member of a team consisting of 7 board members and 1 superintendent. The board hires and evaluates the superintendent. The board sets the policy for the running of the school district. The board works with the superintendent in setting goals and monitoring progress.
Are you happy with the overall direction of the district? why or why not?
Heinrich: Yes. We have hired an excellent superintendent. We are in the second year of the strategic planning process. A lifelong learner profile was developed in 2021 and will be used to update the vision and mission of the districts. The district is committed to diversity, equality and inclusion by ensuring that every student has the opportunity and support to reach their full potential.
Bushy: Farmington Public Schools has amazing potential, with wonderful teachers, administrators and support staff. Our students have lagged behind in reading and maths over the years. The covid lockdown and keeping children at home for such a long time has saved a large percentage of students below grade level in reading and maths. I think our district can do better to prepare its students to meet their grade level expectations. All while successfully accelerating and advancing students at or above their grade level.
What should a school district’s priorities be with the COVID-19 pandemic, including how it spends ARPA funds?
Bushy: The district should focus concretely on improving the reading and math abilities of our students. It should be focused on finding and implementing solid research curricula with a focus on interventions. Reading is fundamental to student success in all subject areas and academically. Mathematics is also an essential skill that needs to be focused and improved in 60% of our students who are below grade level. A student who is struggling academically usually also struggles with confidence. We need to make sure that we are reaching all our students properly.
Heinrich: Priorities should be to assess learning impairments, gaps in achievement, and to provide each student with the support and resources to pursue them. Some of the funds will be used for teaching opportunities for all students. It is also being considered to provide transportation for students who will not be able to stay after school for additional tuition.
Issues related to diversity, equality and inclusion are frequent conversations among students, staff and the community at large. What concrete actions can local districts take to address diversity, equality and inclusion?
Heinrich: FPS completed an equity audit in 2020 and is using the results in working with each building to identify and take corrective steps. The results of equity audits are also incorporated into the strategic planning process.
Bushy: Our district needs to ensure that all students are treated equally and get there academically and socially. Districts should support providing every student the opportunity to excel in courses, sports and other extra-curricular opportunities. Studies show that stronger relationships between teachers and students lead to better academic outcomes. Diversity training for staff is very important for our students to understand and meet their needs.
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School districts saw a dramatic decline in student enrollment in private-, charter-, home- or non-school options during the COVID-19 pandemic. With school funding directly tied to enrollment, what are your thoughts on schools of choice policies, and how will you attract new, returning students to the district?
Bushy: We need to find out why our students are leaving. The district has lost more than 500 students in the last 2 years. That’s over $4.5 million that our district can’t give up. FPS needs to be brought back to where people want to go so that their children can attend the public school system there. We need to interview or survey families who have dragged their children, find out why and use this data to implement improvement plans. FPS needs to offer programs to help with the learning loss that has occurred during COVID. We need to focus on a curriculum that best suits our diverse learners.
Heinrich: The district should focus on sound teaching and learning practices that impact student achievement. Use marketing strategies that highlight the use of data to report on district strengths, student growth and achievement. Existing school of choice policies provide benefits to both families and the district.
What is the problem facing the district which is not on the radar of the residents and what should be? What steps would you take to address that issue?
Heinrich: Michigan Merit Curriculum (MMC) graduation requirements. As a current board member, I am involved in goal setting. One of our goals at Exploring Innovation is to explore MMC options that will allow FPSs to pilot programs that assign lifelong learning district goals to student development, learning, achievement and career readiness with our profile.
Bushy: Our district has become distant due to the use of scriptures. Our students need to read for academics and for fun. Our curriculum should promote reading in all academic fields.
Contact reporter Shelby Tankersley at [email protected] or 248-305-0448. follow him on twitter @shelby_tankk,
Two candidates filed for the two-year seat
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