Why is education important to you and what is your current experience with education?
From a priority perspective, education is the foundation that’s going to set our students up for everything else that happens in life, whether it’s formal classroom education, hands-on job experience, whatever the case may be. It’s giving students that opportunity, and then the onus is on the student to make the best of those situations that they possibly can.
My experience with education, other than my own classroom experience and life learning since then, is seeing my girls and what they’ve been able to pick up. I tell folks that our oldest is now a first-year physical therapy grad student at Concordia, obviously very science-intensive curriculum and math and so forth. But she and one of her good friends in second semester freshman year of college, they remarked to us how surprised they were at the number of students at Concordia that were struggling in math that they had done in their junior year at East. So, with her situation, our middle student is a culinary arts student up at Fox Valley Tech in Appleton, and she’s seeing the same thing. We are just thoroughly impressed with how this district has prepared our daughters for life after high school. And that’s a result of the decisions that past boards, administrations, and teachers have made 10, 20, even 50 years ago. I appreciate those decisions, and now with things starting to slow down at home, it’s my opportunity to pay it forward, to serve, to give back to the community for the next three years, and help the next generation of young families in that regard.
Education is an investment in the future. It is the key that opens opportunities for what an individual wants their life to be. It also is the key to a vibrant and prosperous community. A community will feel the consequences of its educational system, for good or for ill. That is why it is a gift worth investing in and cherishing dearly.
Personally, I really enjoyed school. Perhaps I’ll even go back again someday.
When my kids were about to enter school, I really wanted that experience for them, as well. I did a lot of research before my oldest began school–I toured a parochial school and open-enrolled her at another district. Then, I toured Jackson Elementary. I loved what was happening inside that building. Choosing Jackson was the best choice for our family. I became involved: volunteering in the classroom, planning Family Night events to encourage families to join in fun school-related activities, and eventually serving on the PTO Board.
As my children have grown in the district, I’m excited about the education opportunities that are available to them. Their education in West Bend will open doors to whatever path they choose to go down. I’ve learned to advocate for their education along the way and think I’ll be able to help others in that capacity. A quality education and love of school is important to me and my family and I want that same thing for others.
Interviews by Current reporters Rachel Gergetz, Lily Mottet and Justin Scherzer. Responses are listed in the order that the candidates will appear on the April 2 ballot.
Read more about the candidates at The Current, including their backgrounds, thoughts about the referendum and unique goals.