Place of Birth: Cape Girardeau, Missouri
Spouse, children's names: Spouse - Brenda Wissman;
Children - Joe, Jessica, Amanda, Alexa, Lyulf
Previous offices held or sought: Presiding Commissioner, school board
What is the most important issue facing the Jackson Public Schools?
With the growth in the Jackson R-2 district to me it would be overcrowding. This was a problem when I attended from the first grade till 1975 when I graduated. It is true today and will always be an issue facing the district with classrooms bulging due to student overcrowding.
What in your background or education makes you qualified for this office?
I attended and graduated from Jackson. I saw back then a problem of overcrowding and the pressure put on teachers to do their best with a 1-on-1 to help each student. But in reality they were not able to due to overcrowding. Now with one child in preschool and one in Kindergarten I see the problem is still there. Having this real experience in my life and now seeing it again clearly gives me an insight for the need for reduced class sizes to ensure your children and mine get the highest quality education possible as well as teacher assistance.
Do you favor constructing a new elementary school? Why of why not?
I am in favor of any improvements that relate to the education of our children including but not limited to overcrowding. I am especially in favor of any improvements we can do that does not come witb a tax increase. It only makes sense to do what we can now that interest rates are low and one can bargain for the best possible construction costs.
What are your thought on a possible waiver to provisions of No Child Left Behind? What are some ways to ensure schools are held accountable for studet achievement?
I did not like the No Child Left Behind when it was enacted. I do and have always felt that it was a mistake. If a child can't read, do basic math, or have other basic skills they should not be turned out into a "world of wolves" that will only make them fail and feel inferior. The No Child Left Behind only sets up alot of young adults to fail in society. The teachers as well as parents need to be held accountable so these children get the basic skills needed to succeed in the "real" world. We need more parent involvement in education as well as discipline but we have a big flaw that is those "No Child Left Behind" children are now the "No Children Left Behind" parents. Now we must go back and teach the parents as well as the children. Not all parents will need this help but a refresher never hurts no one. Knowledge is the key to success. Without knowledge we fail as parents, teachers, students and society as a whole.