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ELECTION 2016: Cromwell School Board candidates

Cromwell School District voters will elect three school board members on Nov. 8 and there are four candidates. The Pine Journal asked school board candidates the three following questions. Their answers are numbered to go with the question below each candidate's name. (Answers were limited to a certain word count, and edited by the Pine Journal if they were too long.)

1. How does your past experience, job or education qualify you to serve as a school board member?

2. Why are you running?

3.  In your opinion, what are the top two issues facing your school district right now and how should they be addressed?

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Timothy Homstad

1.

I have a wide and varied employment history from being a dairy farmer to working in the woods to being an LPN, working with the mentally ill, pastoring a church and currently working in the insurance industry for Lenny Conklin State Farm. All of these jobs, both past and present, have given me the opportunity to work for and with a great number of people. I have served on a variety of boards and have chaired several of them. I believe this collection of experiences will benefit the community and the school as we strive to make Cromwell the school of choice for our area.

 

2.

I chose to run for the Cromwell School Board as I have a vested interest in our community. We have strong connections locally and with some of my grandchildren attending school here, I want to do my part to see that the Cromwell-Wright school remains a strong and viable educational institution for generations to come. I believe in the power of community and that is expressed in a variety of ways, school being one of the most visible. When a school works well, teachers teach, students learn, kids get fed both physically and mentally, local jobs are provided and a community is strengthened. I want to be a part of that.

 

3.

In my opinion one of the greatest challenges facing a school district is keeping up enrollment. With many options for public and private education available, schools are challenged with providing cutting edge education and extracurricular activities. To stay ahead of the curve and plan accordingly is one of the greatest issues facing smaller schools.

The second issue I feel is, of course, finances. Balancing the budget is an ongoing challenge. Finding ways to meet budget without sacrificing payroll or extracurricular activities will be ongoing and will need constant attention. If elected to this position, I look forward to helping our district face these issues and others head on with clear direction and strong convictions that will help our school remain strong, stable and a safe environment to educate the teachers, leaders, parents and board members of the future.

Angela Lind Anderson

1.

I have a bachelor's degree in accounting. I am currently self-employed with my own accounting/payroll/tax business. My experience in accounting and finance allows me opportunities to help with the various issues that our district faces.

 

2.

For me, it's all about the KIDS! I want to do what I can to provide the best learning environment and educational experience possible for every single student who walks through the doors of Cromwell-Wright School.

 

3.  

Lack of elective class offerings for our high school students is an issue. We need to offer students a variety. The addition of a dual-licensed teacher would give us so many more options for our high school students.

Also, communications between board members, administration, teachers, parents and community could be improved. By addressing this, we can also work on the issue of keeping our teachers employed within our district. Our excellent staff is what helps keep our enrollment steady. If we lose teachers, I feel we may start to see a declining enrollment.

Lynn Korpela-Swatek

1.  

Employment history: 15 years of banking, 12 of them in Gillette, Wyo., where I was hired at a $27 million bank as a part-time teller. Five years and many promotions later, my job title was "branch administrative officer" at a now $40 million bank. Duties included supervising operations and personnel, resolving customer issues, training staff on new procedures, auditing bank and insurance agency, aiding in planning the budget, and bidding on investment of funds for public entities (ranging from $100,000 to millions).

 

2.

I was raised in Cromwell and graduated from Cromwell-Wright High School. I recognize the immense strength the community and the people in it have to offer in order to keep our school district strong. I want the top priority, when making decisions for the school district, to be for the good of all the students, teachers and taxpayers. I'm running because I care about the future of this community and the school district.

 

3

No. 1 — After attending many board meetings, I realized the community is unaware of a lot of what goes on at the school district level. Although I have faith in the board members decisions, I believe communication with community, teachers and students are going to make stronger and better decisions when the vote is cast. We need to do a better job, in my opinion, in letting the community know more about what's going on.

No. 2 — Spending and finances needs to be addressed. This goes along with the need in keeping our community up to date. We have a lot of intelligent people in our community and school that are financially wise and with strengths in many other areas. We need to utilize them and empower them to become involved. I hope to see this happen if I'm elected.

Candidate Brian Granholm did not respond to the Pine Journal.

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