Con­tested races in 3 re­gions for Boy­er­town School Board

The Community Connection - - LOCAL NEWS - By Evan Brandt ebrandt@21st-cen­tu­ry­media. com @PottstownNews on Twit­ter

The Boy­er­town Area School Board race fea­tures con­tests in Re­gions 1, 2 and 3.

Re­gion 1

In Re­gion 1, which in­cludes Bally and Bech­telsville bor­oughs and the town­ships of Earl, Cole­brook­dale and Wash­ing­ton, three can­di­dates are seek­ing two open seats.

Robert Caso is the only in­cum­bent and he will ap­pear on the Repub­li­can bal­lot line. Rod­ney Boyer will ap­pear on the Demo­cratic bal­lot line and for­mer board mem­ber Ruth Dierolf holds both a Repub­li­can and Demo­cratic bal­lot line.

Boyer, 61, is a mem­ber of the Wash­ing­ton Town­ship Zon­ing Hear­ing Board and is a re­tired pub­lic school ed­u­ca­tor who worked in the field for 34 years, ac­cord­ing to his can­di­date re­sponse.

He holds a mas­ter’s de­gree in ed­u­ca­tional ad­min­is­tra­tion and con­ducted post grad­u­ate stud­ies in learn­ing the­ory.

In his re­sponse, Boyer wrote that he de­cided to run “to en­sure a great ed­u­ca­tion for my daugh­ter and all of the stu­dents of the Boy­er­town Area School District.”

His most im­por­tant goal is “to en­sure the best ed­u­ca­tion for our stu­dents. That in­cludes all aca­demic ar­eas and the var­i­ous pro­grams and ac­tiv­i­ties for which the school district is known.”

Caso, 61, is a cer­ti­fied pub­lic ac­coun­tant, a chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer, and holds a mas­ter’s de­gree in busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion/fi­nance.

In his re­sponse, he wrote that he is run­ning “to give my con­stituents a voice on the Board they oth­er­wise would not have.”

If elected, Caso wrote that his pri­or­ity is to “im­prove aca­demics.”

In her re­sponse, Dierolf, who de­clined to pro­vide her age, wrote that she is run­ning “be­cause I never stopped car­ing about our stu­dents, teach­ers and our com­mu­nity. Our bond rat­ing has just been down­graded, which shows that the board needs help in fis­cal man­age­ment. We need to put our money to ed­u­cat­ing our stu­dents, not fancy build­ing projects that do not pro­duce ad­di­tional aca­demic space. We cer­tainly need to keep our schools in good re­pair, which we have been, con­trary to com­ments that have been made.”

A Boy­er­town Area Se­nior High School grad­u­ate, Dierolf is a re­tired busi­ness- woman. She served for 12 years on Boy­er­town School Di­rec­tor as well as be­ing a mem­ber of the Berks County Youth Aid Coun­cil.

If elected, Dierolf wrote that her pri­or­ity would be “to di­rect our money away from ‘nice to have’ build­ing projects back to the class­room, giv­ing teach­ers the abil­ity to teach our chil­dren with the best meth­ods they know. Too much time is spent teach­ing to tests and try­ing new fads.”

Re­gion 2

Re­gion 2, which strad­dles the county line and in­cludes Boy­er­town and Dou­glass (Berks) Town­ship on the Berks County side and vot­ing Dis­tricts 2, 3 and 4 in Dou­glass (Mont.), has two can­di­dates seek­ing one open seat.

Jill Den­nin, the in­cum­bent, will ap­pear on the Demo­cratic bal­lot line and her op­po­nent, Dana Knowl­ton, on the Repub­li­can line.

In her can­di­date re­sponse, Den­nin, 55, wrote that she is run­ning be­cause “All 4 of my chil­dren re­ceived an ex­cel­lent, well­rounded ed­u­ca­tion from the Boy­er­town Schools and I want to en­sure that all fu­ture stu­dents con­tinue to have the same op­por­tu­ni­ties that my chil­dren had. I con­sider it an op­por­tu­nity to serve my com­mu­nity and ad­vo­cate for pub­lic ed­u­ca­tion.”

Den­nin, who is seek­ing a sec­ond term, is a part­time sub­sti­tute teacher and com­fort keeper. She holds a bach­e­lor’s de­gree in po­lit­i­cal science and pub­lic pol­icy

Her most im­por­tant goal for a sec­ond term is to “hire a su­per­in­ten­dent who has the skills and ex­pe­ri­ence to lead this district en­sur­ing that all stu­dents who grad­u­ate from Boy­er­town are ca­reer or col­lege ready and pre­pared to suc­ceed in a chang­ing world.”

In his re­sponse, Knowl­ton wrote that he de­cided to run “to give back to the com­mu­nity and im­prove per­for­mance for the stu­dents.”

A con­sul­tant with a mas­ter’s de­gree in busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion and fi­nance, Knowl­ton wrote that he has “20 plus years in ex­ec­u­tive man­age­ment op­er­a­tions and an ex­ten­sive sales and mar­ket­ing his­tory.”

If elected, Knowl­ton wrote that his most im­por­tant goals are “im­proved aca­demics and re­spon­si­ble spend­ing.”

Re­gion 3

There is also a con­tested race in Re­gion 3, which in­cludes Dou­glass (Mont.) vot­ing district 1 (res­i­dents liv­ing north of the Mid­dle Creek) as well as New Hanover and Up­per Fred­er­ick town­ships.

In that race Bran­don Foose, who will ap­pear on the Demo­cratic line, is fac­ing Roger Upde­grove on the Repub­li­can line.

Foose, 33, grad­u­ated from Boy­er­town Area Se­nior High School in 2002 and Duke Univer­sity i n 2006 with a bach­e­lor’s de­gree in bi­ol­ogy. He works as a com­pli­ance so­lu­tions lead for “a ma­jor phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pany.”

“I’ve been a wrestling coach for 10 years at both the high school and youth lev­els. My vol­un­teer work in­cludes ef­forts with the NHUF PTO, lo­cal sprue teams, Boy­er­town Mu­sic League, Foun­da­tion for Boy­er­town Ed­u­ca­tion, and as an alumni in­ter­viewer for Duke Univer­sity,” Foose wrote in his re­sponse to an elec­tion ques­tion­naire. “Th­ese, along with my pro­fes­sional ca­reer in science and process im­prove­ment, give me a well-rounded per­spec­tive on the merger be­tween strong schools and a strong com­mu­nity.”

“I re­ceived a qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion with am­ple op­por­tu­ni­ties and want to en­sure that oth­ers re­ceive the same. Af­ter at­tend­ing board meet­ings for a few years, I felt that we could do bet­ter, and that our chil- dren de­serve bet­ter. I want to em­power our teach­ers and in­spire our stu­dents,” Foose wrote.

“I’ve seen far too much po­lit­i­cal pos­tur­ing and grand­stand­ing, but very lit­tle in the way of thought­ful so­lu­tions,” Foose wrote.

He said his most i mpor­tant goal is to face the “very real bud­getary chal­lenges fac­ing pub­lic schools and the only way to ad­dress them is by work­ing to­gether to­ward a com­mon goal — en­abling all stu­dents to suc­ceed in a chang­ing world. When we lose sight of that goal we sac­ri­fice our fu­ture.”

In his can­di­date re­sponse, Upde­grove, 66, wrote that he is run­ning “To boost our stu­dent aca­demic out­come. To en­sure all stu­dents have the skill sets needed to be­come com­pe­tent eth­i­cal adults.”

Upde­grove owned and op­er­ated a small busi­ness for more than 25 years and holds a bach­e­lor’s de­gree in busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion.

If elected, he wrote that his pri­or­ity is “to im­prove gov­er­nance of our ad­min­is­tra­tion to en­sure we achieve the over­all district goals.”

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