By Alyssa Birkeland, Current Staff
The election for two school board seats is on April 7, and Therese Sizer is in the race. Sizer has been on the board for three years and is up for re-election.
Sizer said she was approached to run three years ago because of her education, legal, and business background. She admires the board for its ability to discuss issues from all angles, find solutions, and not just argue each set point of view. Sizer said she is ready to continue tackling those matters, given her familiarity with the complexity of the board’s duties.
“I’ve been through the learning curve,” Sizer said. “I’m in a position to keep working on those tough issues.”
Sizer has a diverse background in education, business, and law. Coming from a family of teachers, she attended Drake University for a degree in education, and taught in the Twin Cities and Gilbert, Iowa. She then went to Drake Law School and practiced law in Davenport, Iowa before moving to West Bend in 1993. For the entirety of her time here, Sizer has worked as in-house counsel for the West Bend Mutual Insurance Company.
Sizer also serves on several non-profit boards. Her work includes the Boys and Girls Club, United Way, the Kettle Moraine Symphony, and the West Bend Schools Foundations.
In an interview with The Current, Sizer was asked her opinion on the following questions:
What is your view of Common Core and what would you do about it?
Sizer said that there always have been and always will be standards, and she doesn’t necessarily disagree with the standards set in Common Core. She acknowledged the difficulty that comes with government regulations on standards and success rates. Sizer said that the tasks of measuring skills, complying with the state, and still trying to keep the students’ best interests in mind are difficult to deal with when all tied together, and that the board is currently working on those issues.
What is your stance on the amount of standardized testing and is there any action you would take on that?
Sizer said that the compliance requirements from the state are the source of testing. She also points out that colleges and scholarships rely on the scores from those tests. Testing is another issue that Sizer said is difficult to simplify.
What do you see as a possible solution for the recent tension between high school students and administration?
Sizer said that it’s not unreasonable to be frustrated and disagree with authority. But when outbursts get out of control, it is now a very real threat to safety, as seen across the country. She suggested that students should find more productive ways to persuade authority to listen to their views.
Click on the links to read full transcripts of Therese Sizer’s answers regarding Common Core, testing, and tension at WBHS.
Also read interviews with candidates Vinney Pheng and Monte Schmiege at The Current.