In the State of Utah voters are able to select fellow citizens to positions on local district school boards through non-partisan elections. This system allows many decisions regarding public education to be determined on a local level. These representatives add real meaning to the term “Grass Roots”.
We are extremely fortunate in the Morgan County School District to have citizens serving in this capacity that take their assignments seriously and have the best interest of our students in mind. Members include Joey Skinner, Bruce Galbraith, Jodi Hipwell, Ken Durrant and Neil Carrigan. They work tirelessly to fulfill their responsibilities and to represent their constituents in a professional and proactive manner. Members are always open and willing to listen to the ideas and concerns of those they represent. They take this responsibility very seriously and seek to find resolution with those concerns.
The diversity of their educational and professional backgrounds lends itself to the governing process. The Board looks at each issue or matter of business from a variety of perspectives. They are not afraid to express their opinions and perspectives in open forum. At times they agree to disagree, but they always work together as a team to find resolutions to difficult problems.
Thanks to their foresight and wisdom the district is constructing two facilities that will enhance the educational experience of our students. The Trojan Century Center and the transportation facility will provide additional educational services to our children. Throughout the construction process the Board has been diligent in their efforts to build the most useable venues while employing cost effective design and construction methodologies. They want the best bang for the least amount of taxpayer dollars.
The Board is also working to develop a building use policy that covers the actual costs of rental while protecting the facilities and fields that were specifically designed for student use. As civic centers the buildings can be used by other government entities and parties, but not at the expenses of the taxpayer dollars collected to build and operate public education programs. Inter-local agreements with entities like the Morgan County Recreation program will not be affected by the upcoming changes. Other programs such as competition leagues and non-commercial groups could see a slight increase in rental fees, but nothing significant. If changes do occur in rates, commercial and for-profit private parties could very well see the greatest increases. The Boards wants the facilities to be utilized by the public for public events.
As school began the Board also made the decision to offer a school breakfast program at Morgan Elementary. For many years the idea had been considered and Morgan was only one of two districts in the state not providing such a service. The Board feels strongly that providing breakfast will help some families and children in our tough economic times. The program will run throughout the year and the Board will review the program and its effectiveness during the summer of 2012.
During my short tenure as superintendent, I have found each member of the Board to be forthright, honest, and truly interested in the affairs of the district and the welfare and success of our students. On the back of the name placards that rest in front of each member’s seat in the board room are the words, “We are Advocates for Children.” They truly act in accordance with this motto.
I am honored to work alongside these individuals. They serve the public and the schools with integrity.