DEA School Board candidate recommendation

By Steve Peterson President, Decorah Education Association

Dear Editor:

There are three open positions on the Decorah school board. The Decorah Education Association (DEA) requested candidate statements regarding important issues for students and teachers in the Decorah school system and conducted follow-up interviews with those candidates seeking additional information.

The DEA believes all the candidates are strong supporters of public education. The school district would do well to have any of them as school board members. Each brings a unique perspective and experience to the board.

Two candidates rose to the top. Our strong preference is for candidates Carole Sand and Aaron Zander, to fill two of the positions. Sand is a veteran teacher – North Winn and Decorah most recently – and a former colleague. We know her commitment to students and her ability to make positive change. Zander, a former teacher now in higher education, also knows the classroom from the inside. He’s young and has young children just now entering the lower elementary system. Both candidates would bring knowledge of students’ needs and classroom realities to their positions, crucial during this time of rapid change in education in Iowa.

Which leaves one position.

In various ways, the other three candidates represent important perspectives. While we highlight Mr. Zander and Ms. Sand’s classroom experience, committee members split on the remaining excellent candidates. Some highlighted the experience, knowledge, and commitment of Mr. Petersburg. Others noted the crucial north Winneshiek perspective and board experience of Mr. Darling. Still others commented on Mr. Robinson’s strong leadership skills and understanding of a board’s role in the education setting.

Decorah is fortunate that five candidates who strongly support public education volunteered to serve our community.

Early voting is ongoing at the Auditor’s Office. Election day is Tuesday, Nov. 7.

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