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Home / Articles / Special Sections / Vote 2009 /  St. Vrain School District breakdown
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Thursday, October 8,2009

St. Vrain School District breakdown

Vote 2009

District B

Vote for Debbie Lammers

Debbie Lammers, 57, previously worked in the legal field before moving to Colorado. Lammers has 12 years of experience as an active volunteer in with St. Vrain schools. She has been on various PTO boards, was on the district's Ballot Campaign Committees, chair of the Community Bond Review Committee, and is currently the president of the Niwot High School Education Foundation Board of Directors. Lammers says that the school district is facing the challenge of higher student performance expectations along with critical funding concerns. Lammers says that curriculum options are essential to student achievement. She says that teachers and other employees are entitled to compensation increases.

Alexander Sharp, 46, says education is the foundation of that future and that the country has no chance to compete effectively and efficiently globally without strong public school systems. Sharp says the key issues are fiscal responsibility, student achievement, wellness of teachers, staff and students, as well as strong community interaction and involvement.

Sharp says that being in the military for 27 years has taught him about how to work with a team. Sharp says that since he has lived in the area for a little more than two years that he comes to the position with out any preconceived ideas or bias.

Alexander Sharp is aware of many key issues, but Debbie Lammers boasts 12 years of experience in St. Vrain's schools ranging from PTO involvement to serving on the district's committees, proving her dedication to the school system. Vote for Debbie Lammers.

District C

Vote for Robert Smith.

Strider Benston has a bachelor's in political science and master's in humanities in philosophy and history from UCD and did graduate work at Cambridge University. He was a substitute teacher in Colorado for 13 years.

Benston says he brings a fresh perspective to the district, since he was involved in the civil rights movement and was a labor organizer, community organizer and is passionate crusader for justice. Benston says the key issues are a respect for diversity and modes of teaching. Benston says that schools should focus on history in humanistic education. Benston says that a voice like his hasn't been represented on the board yet.

Incumbent Robert Smith, 62, was appointed to the Board in November 2007. Smith has 35 years of experience as a senior health executive with a background in strategic planning, health care financing and contracting as well as quality improvement. Smith says that he is running because education is the foundational issue for assuring a stable present and viable future for our community. Smith says that key issues are defining student achievement targets, engaging parents and staff in achieving those targets in a diverse population and managing and operating capital expenses. Smith says the Board currently is pursuing specific measures of student achievement, engaging staff and addressing funding.

We like Strider Benson's perspective and background, but Robert Smith is a seasoned board member who knows the district's key issues and has a solid background in finance and planning, something the St. Vrain district needs right now. Vote for Robert Smith.

District D

Incumbent Dorinda Van Lone, 43, has been on the board for the past four years. Van Lone says she is running to ensure the completion of projects in the 2008 MLO and Bond initiative. Van Lone says the key issue is concentrating on equity in all schools in the district. She is running unopposed.

District F

Incumbent Rod Schmidt, 53, has four years' experience on the school district's board of education and served for four years on the Citizen's Bond Review Committee. Schmidt says that budget cuts must be made due to state deficits and that this will force cuts both this year and the next year in spending. Schmidt says that every financial decision the school board makes must have the potential for long-term sustainability. Schmidt says that the district's primary goals are raising the achievement levels of students, preparing all students in the district for post-high school education and career opportunities, as well as ensuring that the district continues to be a desirable district to work in. He is running unopposed.

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