Candidates for the Jordan School Board will face opposition in two of three precincts in the Nov. 6 election.
In Precinct 1, incumbent Maurine C. Jensen is unopposed. In Precinct 2, incumbent Linda G. Neff, a board member since 1987, is running against Jeanne C. Winder; and in Precinct 3, Dennis R. Christopherson is running against Rodney L. Dahl.Precinct 2
Linda G. Neff said she believes the biggest educational challenge facing the 64,000-student district is to improve education to provide quality instruction to students, given the economic and physical constraints of the district.
Neff said she hopes to streamline the process for evaluating and eliminating poor teachers from the system and wants public education to operate more like a business with more control given to local school boards and schools.
The four-year board member also wants to change the way negotiations between the district and the teachers union are organized so that negotiations end in July.
Jeanne C. Winder, a Sandy resident for 11 years, is retired. She said she is running because she wants more accountability in the way the district spends its money. She said the biggest problem in education is lack of funds.The greatest strengths of the district, in Winder's estimation, are parents, children and teachers. She said she is running because she cares about the education of her grandchildren and because she feels an obligation to contribute to the community.
As a newcomer to the race, Winder said, she needs to observe the educational programs already in place to recommend appropriate changes.
Jordan School Board President Don A. Carpenter, who has been on the board since 1982, had filed to run for re-election but later dropped his candidacy.
Dennis R. Christopherson said he believes the biggest problem facing the district is a lack of funds to meet the educational needs of students, teachers and administrators.
He said his role, if elected, would be to help improve morale. "I see a dual role with parents in representing their interests as an elected board member, while helping them understand the educational problems and needs of the school district."
But even with low teacher morale, teacher quality, as measured by student standardized test scores, is quite high in the district, Christopherson said.
Having four children in the public schools, Christopherson said, has helped him understand the educational challenges facing students, teachers and administrators.
Rodney L. Dahl, who served on the Jordan School Board and the State Board of Education in the 1970s, said teacher performance would be his prime focus as a board member. "There needs to be more excellence and accountability in the school system," he said.
Dahl said he wants to see the district back a structured performance management system. "We need an accountability system that creates a better link with what's happening in the classroom. A performance management system will give those kids in the classroom a better education," he said.
Incumbent Maurine C. Jensen, a board member since 1979, is unopposed. Precinct 1 includes Midvale, the northeast part of West Jordan, west Sandy and the Union area west of 900 East.