To the Editor:

As a candidate for the Fremont School Board, I would like to introduce myself to the voters of Fremont.

I moved to Fremont almost seven years ago and am a recently retired educator. Before moving to Fremont, I was involved heavily in educational issues, attending school board and subcommittee meetings regularly, was a member of ad hoc committees and an advisory budget committee, chairing that budget committee for one year. It was that involvement that led me to spend five years and many dollars to become an educator (I had been a self employed sub-contractor before that decision). It has been nearly twenty years since my journey began.

Please, don't assume that because I was an educator that I am blind or insensitive to the financial issues surrounding education in Fremont, and our state. While an educator, I came to understand better the many complex issues and difficulties in providing a great education to students while being fiscally responsible to the taxpayers.

I know we will agree that the cost of providing an education is certainly a concern in these tough times, or at any time. But, do we really recognize what is driving that cost besides salaries and benefits? The biggest portion of any school budget is in salaries and benefits... but, shouldn't people be paid their worth? It will always be the major part of a school budget because it is a "human" industry. We ask, shouldn't the community expect good results from the people being paid...but don't consider, does the community realize the state and federal policies and regulations, ever changing teaching strategies driven by bureaucrats and ivory tower thinkers, and the social issues that, especially in middle schools, help create less effective classrooms and drive up cost. There are two sides to every issue.

All education is local, but ineffective classrooms and costs are driven by outside organizations, government, and poor social practices. The educators in your classrooms should not be seen as the enemy of the taxpayer, or visa versa. Fremont needs to take back the education of its children by recognizing these issues and being willing to act on them to promote improvement in the school, and the whole community.

I believe I can bring a unique perspective and affect positive change as a member of the Fremont School Board. I ask for your vote on March 8.

Laurence Dobson

Fremont

 

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