©2018 BY FRIENDS OF BETSY LANDERS, JOHN UELEKE, TREASURER

Focusing on the Future

“We have accomplished a great deal as a school district….we must now focus on our future.”

~Betsy Landers

•    Continue to champion school security and safety
•    Keep GMSD on the cutting edge of technology to ensure students post-secondary       education or future employment 
•    Advocate for implementation of best practices in bullying prevention/intervention
•    Encourage optimal classroom size and increased teacher support
•    Plan for additional growth in middle schools
•    Explore the establishment of Health Sciences Academy/Partnerships
•    Maintain strong fiscal responsibility of district’s resources

Continue to champion school security and safety

   I will continue to champion facility upgrades and new opportunities for continued teacher and parent education.  Our children deserve safe and welcoming schools!  

 

   After the Parkland, Florida tragedy, we proactively took a very serious look at each of our schools to identify security weaknesses.  After board approval, the district installed 202 cameras in our schools as well as audible door prop alarms on every exterior door. Working with Germantown Police Department, we offered active shooter training for our teachers.  We just recently received a grant to hire a security specialist for the district to further enhance the security and safety of our schools.

 

Keep GMSD on the cutting edge of technology to ensure students post-secondary education or future employment

   I believe the education of our children is vital for the future of our community. I will continue to support the district’s 1:1 Blended Learning Initiative and our move to digital learning in order to provide our students with resources for enhancing their education, utilizing technology to support their learning styles and making learning more fun and effective.

 

Advocate for implementation of best practices in bullying prevention/intervention

   I will continue championing new polices to provide oversight, continuing education, and work to help strengthen administrative efforts on bullying issues to protect our students and teachers.

 

   GMSD sponsored an in-service training on Improving Best Practices in Bullying Prevention and Intervention.  The community was also invited to participate in a Bullying Prevention workshop geared to help parents.  Greater efforts to intervene and address bullying will continue throughout the school year.

 

 

Encourage optimal classroom size and increased teacher support

   I fully support the efforts to achieve optimal classroom size and ensure that our teachers have the tools and support necessary to offer our children the best in education.  Optimal class size has been a goal of  GMSD, which was identified by the founding Board of Education.  When we open Forest Hill Elementary, the district will be able to move closer to achieving that goal.  Equally important to our students is the second goal of the Strategic Plan, which focuses on recruitment, development and retention of an exemplary staff of teachers, administration, and support personnel.

Plan for additional growth in middle schools

   We need more classroom space in our middle schools.  I strongly support the addition of a classroom wing at Houston Middle School and right sizing Riverdale 6th-8th grades through proper zoning of our middle school students.  Working closely with the city, the board has been able to plan for the financial investment of the HMS addition either in 2020 or 2021, depending on student population numbers once the new Attendance Zones take effect.

 

Explore the establishment of health sciences academy/partnerships

   Our high school students would greatly benefit from the establishment of an additional specialized academy at Houston High School.  The city and district are working together to explore partnerships with local health groups, hospitals and health services companies in an effort to offer health sciences learning opportunities to our students.  I am proud to serve as part of that working group.

 

Maintain strong fiscal responsibility of district’s resources

   Through strong financial oversight and conservative budgeting, the district has been able to create  a multi-million dollar reserve.  I will continue my commitment to maintaining our multi-million reserve.  It is prudent financial management to create and maintain a ‘rainy day’ fund to have the ability to enhance our schools as needed. 

 

   I have held multiple financial leadership positions at the local, state and national level.  Through these positions, I gained deep knowledge of the budgeting process, the nuances of school funding, and non-profit management.  These skills continue to be beneficial to GMSD.