Betsy Les

Demographics

Independent

61

Crystal Lake

Bachelor's Degree, Elementary Education, Bradley University

Master's Degree, Reading Specialist, Northern Illinois University

Other, Education Administration, Northern Illinois University

Ph. D., Curriculum and Instruction, Loyola University Chicago

Married, Tom Les

Abby Wiley, 31

On the Record

What experiences do you have that make you a good candidate for office?

My extensive background in education makes me an excellent candidate for the District 47 Board of Education. I was an elementary teacher for 14 years so I have first hand knowledge as to what happens in our school’s classrooms. I was an elementary school principal for 20 years. This enables me to understand the complex issues that are facing our schools everyday. I have also worked as a college professor teaching graduate level courses for teachers who are pursuing a master’s degree in the teaching of reading so I have extensive knowledge in the area of curriculum. I believe my background in the field of education will provide an additional viewpoint to the business leaders, accountants, and attorneys currently serving on the District 47 Board of Education.

What are your top two or three priorities if elected?

2. My top priorities for the Board of Education for District 47 would be: 1) Demonstrating and insisting upon fiscal responsibility to all stakeholders including students, parents, staff, and the taxpayers in our community 2) Insisting and expecting that all students attending District 47 schools have a positive educational experience that results in educational excellence provided by the highest quality teachers and staff 3) Establishing policies that support academic excellence benefitting all students.

Would you support freezing your taxing district’s levy until housing prices rebound? Why or why not?

One of my major responsibilities as a board member is to maintain fiscal responsibility and manage the dollars the district receives from all sources. The question of whether or not to freeze tax levies is not independent of itself. While I understand the dynamics of falling housing prices and increased tax rates, a school board member must also weigh the impact of other resources that are coming into the district (i.e. state and federal funding). Variables such as the impact of pension reform on school districts, pending teacher contracts, and other factors play into this decision. While I understand this not a direct response to the question, in my mind it is a bigger picture issue. A tax levy that I will support will be based on the dollars needed to provide a quality education within District 47 and not simply based on the total amount of tax dollars available to us.

What one decision in the past year by the school board do you most disagree with and why?

I support the decisions that have been made by the District 47 Board of Education during the past year. I do not have any significant disagreements with their actions.

What was the biggest accomplishment of the board in the past year?

The district continues to provide a quality education while maintaining the fiscal stability they have achieved while other districts have not been prepared to meet the financial challenges that are currently presented in our struggling economy.

Why should voters elect you to office?

I have a full understanding of what policies and procedures are needed at the elementary level within the school system to achieve academic excellence, a high level of academic achievement, and preparation for a student’s continuing education in high school based on my teaching, learning, and administrative experiences. It is my goal through my experience to complement the current knowledge and expertise of the other board members that are serving District 47