The Student News Website of Francis Howell North High School.
The Collector Store

FHNtoday.com

The Student News Website of Francis Howell North High School.

FHNtoday.com

The Student News Website of Francis Howell North High School.

FHNtoday.com

Countdown to the Last Day of School!
days
0
0
hours
1
3
minutes
1
6
seconds
5
1

Two New Members Join School Board

Last month, the constituents of the Francis Howell School District cast their ballots for candidates to fill Adam-Colethe two open seats on the school board. Sandra Ferguson and Chad Lange were elected, beating out Kimberlyann Granger, Mike Hoehn, and the incumbent Eric Seider.

Ferguson is a veteran of the FHSD School Board, having served from 1995 to 2001.

“The technology is what has changed the most,” Ferguson said. “When I was on the board before, we had pagers for a couple of years and then we had some of the very first cell phones. My last year on the board we were just figuring out how to use email.”

Ferguson believes the issues she and the board will face in her coming term will likely differ somewhat from those 20 years ago, but they may still face some of the same problems they did then.

“When we make changes we are always trying to ensure student safety,” Ferguson said. “That was one of the big issues when I first got on the board. My family and I had just moved from California and we had a lot of safety procedures in California schools, but not so many here. When I first proposed them, they all looked at me like I was Greek. But eventually, we embraced it and thank goodness we did. I think a lot of that is going to come back around.”

Ferguson wants the district to focus not only on safety procedures, but also on balancing the budget, and ensuring they operate within their means.

Of all the candidates who ran, Chad Lange garnered the most votes, at 21.7 percent, beating out the incumbent, Eric Seider. Before the elections, Lange spent months campaigning, attending school and community functions and canvassing.

“[When I found out I had won] I was ecstatic, excited, and most of all exhausted,” Lange said. “Campaigning from December til April nearly every day after working a full-time job, and raising four children really wears you down.”

Lange will be serving his first term on the school board. His term will last for

three years, until at least 2018.
“I am most nervous about the huge responsibility that goes with being a

board member,” Lange said. “The fact that I am new has a lot to do with it. I know that I will transition fine. We have a tremendous executive cabinet, and fellow board members that are willing to help calm my nerves and answer any questions I have.”

Both Ferguson and Lange agree that the district’s budget it going to be a major point of contention in their coming terms on the school board.

“I feel it’s vital we find ways to balance the budget, without jeopardizing student achievement,” Lange said. “The biggest issue I feel is money. We need money to operate our schools, and there never really seems to be enough. We need our state legislators to really work on getting our school district fully funded. Being underfunded makes it a little tough to project and budget.”

The school board is also experiencing other changes. Since Eric Seider was not re-elected, Mark Lafata will take his place as president of the school board. The president is responsible for running board meetings, deciding what time is spent on what issues and who gets the opportunity to speak on them.

“I was sad to see Eric go, but I am excited to assume the responsibilities of president,” Lafata said. “I really hope that I can make sure the board runs smoothly and that we get as much done and do as much good as possible.”

Members of the Board of Education run and serve on a voluntary basis. Although they work closely with the district, they are unpaid. Since members are volunteers, they often have jobs outside of the district giving them experience in different areas which allows them insight into different policy issues the board will face.

“When you work collaboratively, when you have all facets of the community together, you can make a better, more informed decision,” Lange said. “The school board has seven members with seven different personalities and seven different backgrounds. That helps give you a better chance of making the best decision.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to FHNtoday.com
$105
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Francis Howell North High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to FHNtoday.com
$105
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All FHNtoday.com Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *