Campaigns are underway for Board of Education seats in ten local districts, and election day will be Tuesday, April 3. The KC Education Enterprise is asking each candidate to respond to a list of questions that may help voters decide how to cast their ballots.
Melissa Roberts, an incumbent running for re-election to the North Kansas City School District Board of Education, was the first to respond:
1. What skills and experience would you bring to a position on your local Board of Education?
I have been a member of the NKCSD Board of Education for the past three years. I am a nurse, an attorney and also a university faculty member.
2. Are you – or have you been – a parent or grandparent of a child in public schools?
My husband and I moved to our neighborhood of Kansas City specifically so our children could attend NKCSD schools and my children have attended them since kindergarten. I have a son who is a sophomore at Staley HS and a daughter who is in 8th grade at New Mark MS.
3. In what school or district activities have you been involved?
I have been on the NKCSD Board of Education since 2009.
4. How frequently do you attend board meetings, and how long have you been attending meetings?
As a board member, I have attended all meetings. Prior to that I attended occasional meetings.
5. What do you see as the board’s roles and responsibilities?
The role of the school board is to hire the superintendent and ensure that the school district is being managed wisely.
6. What is the role of the superintendent?
The role of the superintendent is to act as the chief administrator and supervisor of the entire district.
7. Can you – or should you – support a board decision you do not favor?
All board of education members should express their opinions during the decision-making process. Once the decision has been made, the board member must support the final decision of the group, even if they disagree with it.
8. What are the some of the challenges currently facing your district?
Challenges currently facing our district include dwindling financial resources and a steady increase in our student population.
9. What are some of the district’s strengths and weaknesses?
The NKCSD is blessed with tremendous “people resources”, as they have excellent staff, faculty and administrators. The district also has the support of the community. The diminishing economic resources available to the district continues to be weakness.
10. What do you think is the most important thing board members can do to support children who attend school in the district?
The most important thing school board members can do to support children in the district is to continue to act as a representative of the district’s patrons and our community members, as well as boosters for the school district.
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