January 18, 2022

Attack discouraging

The editorial and article in the weekend edition of the Bangor Daily News (Aug. 1-2) regarding certified training for board members appeared to reflect a knee-jerk reaction to a potentially fruitful and beneficial project. The negative response seemed to be founded on the belief that somehow an opportunity to provide further education for board members would threaten traditional school governance and the democratic process.

The attack, while not surprising, was discouraging. At the same time that school districts as organizations are challenged to explore and implement system-wide fundamental change; that teachers and administrators are investing in new training to meet the needs of all students and design learner centered schools; that traditional approaches to education are questioned, a proposal to offer similar educational experiences to the policy-makers is rejected as suspect.

As a superintendent of schools, I welcome the support of trained and knowledgeable board members. While the district and Maine School Management Association provide workshops and other training, a systematic approach to the learning process would only add value. More knowledgeable board members should not be seen as a threat by leader of any organization, and certainly not by leaders of schools. Dr. Frances G. Wills Searsmont

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