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home : news : news Thursday, April 28, 2016

9/4/2013 Email this articlePrint this article 
Two seek seats on Central school board
Two candidates are running for two open seats on the Central Community School Board: incumbent Steve Fuglsang and Angela Rheingans, both of DeWitt.

All of the seats on the Central school board are at-large.

Steve Fuglsang

Steve Fuglsang, 59, is a lifelong resident of the Central Community School District. He and his wife, Connie, who is a retired third-grade teacher, have been married for 34 years and have two children.

Fuglsang received a bachelor of arts degree in teaching from the University of Northern Iowa, a master of science degree in educational administration from Western Illinois University and an educational specialist degree from Western Illinois University.

He worked for 34 years in education as a teacher, coach, principal and consultant, including 11 years in the Delwood school district and 20 years as elementary principal in the Camanche school district.

Fuglsang is a trustee of the Central Community Education Foundation, co-captain of the DeWitt area chapter of United Way of Clinton County and a former member of the Frances Banta Waggoner Public Library board.

What do you think the role of a school board member should be?

The role of a school board member is:

•To develop a shared educational vision that promotes high academic achievement for all students in a safe and orderly environment.

•To develop and maintain board policies and practices that promote the successful achievement of district short- and long-term goals.

•To maintain a fiscally responsible budget.

•To hire and evaluate the superintendent of schools.

•To be a good listener to all involved stakeholders.

Why do you want to serve on the school board?

This is an opportunity for me to return service to the school district for the quality education my children and I have received.

What makes you qualified to be a board member? What skills would you bring to the board?

I have had the opportunity to gain knowledge and experience over my years in education from working with two different school district boards of education, now three. All of these experiences have shown decisions should be made in the best interests of its students.

I feel I have the skills necessary to work collaboratively with other school board members and involved stakeholders so that district goals can be achieved.

I have had experience with blending students' needs and teachers' needs with limited resources.

I will listen to stakeholders.

What are the most important needs in the district at this time, and what would you do as a board member to meet those needs?

I feel the district has placed itself in a great position with its physical plant. The primary focus, as always, should be continually improving the quality of educational opportunities for our students through strong professional development opportunities for our teachers. Strong teachers produce strong academic achievement from our students.

What are your thoughts on the district's budget and financial priorities?

School boards across Iowa continue to be challenged with budget decisions. Regular and timely discussions with local legislators will be important to secure the funding necessary for the rising costs of quality education.

As mentioned earlier, school boards will need to prioritize their needs and purchase what they can afford in an effort to remain fiscally sound. School districts also need to continue searching for available grant monies to assist program needs.

Are there any other issues you would like to see addressed? How would you address them?

My present position as a school board member has been a rewarding experience. I will continue to work and make decisions based on what is best for our students and staff.

What makes you a better choice for the voters than the opposing candidates?

My 34 years of educational experience have allowed me to gain knowledge and understanding of the many facets of an educational system including curriculum, professional development, staffing needs, student needs and legislative action. Using this experience to best meet the needs of Central students and staff will be my focus.

Is there anything else you would like the voters to know?

I encourage you to vote Sept. 10 for the candidates of your choice. If re-elected as a school board member, I will continue to focus on three primary issues:

•Make decisions in the best interest of students.

•Maintain fiscal responsibility and integrity.

•Listen to and communicate with the community.

 

Angela Rheingans

Angela Rheingans is a lifelong resident of DeWitt. She and her husband, Brent, have two children attending Ekstrand Elementary.

Rheingans graduated from Central High School in 1994 and received a bachelor of arts degree in marketing and management from Augustana College.

She works as the director of the DeWitt Community Hospital Foundation, a non-profit foundation that supports Genesis Medical Center-DeWitt as well as healthy initiatives in the community.

Rheingans has been a founder and board member of several young professional networking organizations in Iowa and currently volunteers as chair of the marketing committee for the DeWitt Chamber and Development Co. She is a member of DeWitt Noon Lions and St. Joseph Church.

What do you think the role of a school board member should be?

I believe a school board member's role is always to represent the best interests of the students in our district today and those in the years to come, while listening to the concerns and suggestions of the community.

Why do you want to serve on the school board?

My children and family are the most important part of my life. So, when I was looking at ways to give back to my community, serving on the school board was an opportunity that really appealed to me.

I believe the education a child receives is vitally important in preparing them to be successful in life. There are obviously many things that impact a child, many of which are outside our control. But the quality of education provided in our district is something our community can be proud of, and I know I can assist in ensuring the continuation of that tradition for all Central students.

What makes you qualified to be a board member? What skills would you bring to the board?

I've held multiple positions, paid and volunteer, that are numbers-driven, giving me firsthand knowledge of the importance of budgets, goals and vision.

I am collaborative and able to see things from all points of view. I'm always interested in listening to others' opinions but ultimately make my own decisions after careful thought and evaluation.

I'm a Central grad and have two children in the district.

What are the most important needs in the district at this time, and what would you do as a board member to meet those needs?

I'm not running for school board because I have a list of things I want to change or fix. If I see a need, I hope to be able to work with the rest of the board to address that need.

I am approaching this role with an open mind and enthusiasm to better understand the district's needs, while offering a fresh perspective.

What are your thoughts on the district's budget and financial priorities?

I feel the district is doing a good job of using the budget it has in the most efficient way possible. There are many factors outside the district's control, so there must be good expense management as well as a bit of creativity to best meet the needs of the students.

Are there any other issues you would like to see addressed? How would you address them?

As a Central graduate, I'm very happy with the education I received. But times change. That education is no longer enough for today's students.

The district needs to provide relevant technology, curriculum and services, ensuring that our students receive a viable and competitive education.

I am excited to be part of a board that implements and communicates a shared vision for the district's future. I feel right now we're at a great place, and it would be easy to sit back and ride it out. But the truth is, if we don't look forward and plan for where we want the district to be, we could easily fall behind. We need to keep our momentum going.

What makes you a better choice for the voters than the opposing candidates?

I have relevant work and volunteer experience. I'm a good communicator and am open to new ideas. I have children in the district, and I'm running for this position to positively impact our school district.

Is there anything else you would like the voters to know?

I have a passion for my community and I want what is best for all students lucky enough to attend Central. Go Sabers!


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