6 Things We Look For in a School Board Candidate…

School board members are responsible for a variety of tasks relating to education and school systems. We currently have a number of candidates who are looking to fill the spot being opened by Paul Cushing’s move away from Columbia.  So it seemed like a good time to review the list of what we have recommended in the past as traits to look for when choosing our board members.  Also you can calendar now next year’s candidate forum — March 7, 6:30 to 8:30 pm at the ARC.  We hope you join us.

Here is the list: 

1. Ability to work effectively with others. Ask – does this candidate have effective listening and speaking skills? Has this candidate demonstrated an ability to build consensus and achieve collaborative outcomes?  Will this candidate listen to the concerns and thoughts of parents, students, and faculty with an open-mind?

2. Values diversity. Ask -does this candidate engage and show rapport with different segments of the public?  Have they demonstrated an understanding of the need to involve the entire community in the decisions of how we educate our children?

3. Organization, Fiscal and Leadership Skills.  Ask – what experience does this candidate bring to the table?  Do they understand and respect the differences between policy- making and administration?  Can they work with a budget?

4. Seeks Excellence in Education. Ask – is this candidate open to new ideas? Is the candidate committed to quality through innovation and professional development? Do they have high expectations for achievement for all students?

5. Community Builder and Leader.  Ask – what other organizations, boards, or activities has this candidate been involved in?  Will they be a positive role model for our youth?

6. Strong Advocate for Public Education!

-Jada Winchester, CPPS Intern