Monday, July 26, 2010

"We Can Do Better"
As I prepare for the November 2010 General Elections you will see this Sign around Bibb County. I have pledged to conduct a cost effective campaign which I will model as a member of the School Board. I know that I will be but one member of a team of eight, however I know that I can express me views and share my concerns in an effective manner. I am confident that everyone is concerned about the tax dollars that all governments are collecting. I am also confident that "We Can Do Better" as regards the management of the limited resources that all governments will collect in the future. I am aware that many have reduced hours, been terminated, or are living on limited financial resources because of the current economy.

I know that by working together that we can continue to provide an excellent education for the Scholars of Bibb County. Will it be easy? Of course not, but I also know that it can be done. I appreciate your support. Thank You!!!

Published by Alan Thiese
Candidate for Post 8, Bibb County Georgia School Board

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

"We Can Do Better"
In several blog entries I have discussed the fact that Parent Engagement in the nurturing of their children is vital. I have also discussed the fact that a Child learns more in their first three years of live than during any other period.

During the recent Fourth of July (Independence Day) I noted families with young children enjoying the opportunity to learn more about the Birthplace of Macon at Historic Fort Hawkins.
This fifteen star flag was flown at Fort Hawkins on the Fourth of July 2010. Attendees learned about the War of 1812 and how this Flag was of great importance during that time.

Parent engagement such as I witnessed is what I am encouraging now and will encourage as a member of the Bibb County School Board.

Together "We Can Do Better."

Published by Alan Thiese
Candidate for Post 8, Bibb County Georgia School Board

Saturday, July 03, 2010

"We Can Do Better"
Why am I seeking the Post 8 (County Wide Seat) on the Bibb County Board of Education? I have always thought it was much better to be the part of the solution rather than being a part of the problem. I Care and I am a Concerned Citizen and I know that I can work as a team player on the Board of Education to "Make our School System Better!!"
In addition to bringing diversity to the Board I would like to share my comments as to why I am the Right Person to Make a Difference:
My Vision and Goals for high academic achievement for all students:
I realize that a child learns more in the first three years of life than they will ever learn after that.
I believe that all of our Children deserve the best education we can provide.
I believe that the role of public education is to educate all Scholars so that they can be productive citizens in our society.
I believe that all Scholars have the potential to achieve a proper education to the level of their abilities. I am aware that our society will always have special needs scholars and they also must be afforded the opportunity to receive an education.
As a member of the school board it will be my goal to provide a well rounded education so that all can achieve their potential.
Do I have Confidence in our local Public Schools?
Yes. 92 percent of our citizens in training currently receive their education in Georgia's Public Schools. As a society we rely on the citizens who have received a public school education in our every day lives.
I have been an engaged parent in the Bibb School System as my Children attended Rosa Taylor Elementary, Clisby Magnet School, Miller Middle School and Central High School.
  • I was the Chairperson of fund raising at Miller Middle School.
  • I was the President of the Parents organization at Central High School. During that period I was involved with the Principal, Ms. Espy and another Concerned Citizen, Mr. Tom Hudson working on a Drug Abuse Prevention Program.

In recent years I have been engaged as a Concerned Citizen:

  • I have been a Rolling Reader (also known as Read Aloud in recent years) during the period 1999 through 2007. I read to Scholars at Weir, Bruce, Morgan and Vineville Academy.
  • At this time I am a Mentor to a High School Scholar.

I believe in leading by example. Both of my Children were involved in the Sugar Bear Band at Central High School. One Child was a member of the Clisby Quiz Team. One Child was involved with the Army ROTC at Central.

I was also educated in Public Schools and achieved a score of 98 percentile on the Iowa Standardized Test each of My High School Years.

I would submit that I have confidence in our Public School System and when elected I pledge that I will speak to School Parent Groups as often as afforded the opportunity to stress parental engagement as well as address the needs of Children in their first three years of life.

Do I understand the role of the School Board?

Yes! When elected I will be one of eight members of the Bibb School Board. I know that it is the duty of the Board to establish policy and monitor the System. I know that no one individual of the Board has any authority over the system. The Board has the power to manage the system while the day-to-day operation of the system is properly executed by the Professional Educators. In this regard I understand and pledge to adhere to the principles of Georgia Senate Bill 84 as recently passed:

"The General Assembly finds that local boards of education play a critical role in setting the policies that lead to the operation and success of local school systems. School board members hold special roles as trustees of public funds, including local, state and federal funds, while they focus on the singular objective of ensuring each student in the local school system receives a quality basic education. Board duties require specialized skills and training in the performance of vision setting, policy making, approving multimillion dollar budgets, and hiring a qualified superintendent. The motivation to serve as a member of a local board of education should be the improvement of schools and academic achievement of all students. Service on a local board of education is important citizen service. Given the specialized nature and unique role of membership on a local board of education, this elected office should be characterized and treated differently from other elected offices where the primary duty is independently to represent constituent views. Local board of education members should abide by a code of conduct and conflict of interest policy modeled for their unique roles and responsibilities. And although there are many measures of the success of a local board of education, one is clearly essential: maintaining accreditation and the opportunities it allows the school system's students."

As a Candidate I have already participated in a Seminar sponsored by the Georgia School Board Association to learn about Board member Duties. When elected I will participate in all required educational opportunities to learn about my duties.

Do I have knowledge and concerns about the broad range of challenges our School Board must address?

  • Since 1978 I have attended the Budget Hearings of the School Board on a regular basis.
  • As a Candidate I have attended all the Called Meetings and the Regular Meetings of the Bibb County School Board.

The Bibb County School System has a great physical plant. As we proceed in the future the Board must:

  • Provide the best education possible for all of our Scholars.
  • Improve the image of the Bibb System. Policies which enhance open and honest as well as timely communication must be developed. The system must be aware of the need to address the "bad" things that happen in a timely manner. I recall the recent Bloomfield Middle School Gun Discharge Incident and the Howard Middle School Restroom Tragedy.
  • The establishment of a consistent, yet fair discipline policy to insure that all of the Scholars are Safe.
  • Prudent and effective use of the limited resources. We are all aware of the challenges all levels of Government are currently experiencing. Thus the school board will need to continue to address the use of limited funding. As a member of our U.S. Military for 21 years I know that I have personal experience regarding the management of limited financial resources and living within my means. As a member of the School Board I know that we can all work as a team and think "Outside of the Box" as we engage in the yearly activity of establishing the following year's budget. Yes, a challenging task; but one that must be completed each year with the primary focus on providing an excellent education for all Scholars in the Bibb System.
  • I am also aware of State and Federal Mandates on the education process. Many of these mandates are issued without the necessary funding. A major problem, but I also feel that Citizens and School Boards can advocate for their respective school systems. I know that all levels of government that all elected officials must be and always indicate during their respective campaigns that education is a top priority, if not a number one priority.

I am not a single issue candidate and realize that many challenges face all of us.

The Bibb System as well as all other School Systems face major challenges at this time and also in the future.

Can I work effectively with the rest of the Board?

  • I submit that I as a career enlisted Sailor of 21 years in our Navy have the team working abilities to function with the Board. During my 17 years as a production worker at Brown and Williamson here in Macon I worked on a team which consistently exceeded production goals as well as safety goals.
  • I have witnessed the current board as they developed the FY 2011 Budget and am aware of how each current board member interacts.

Do I have a mix of skills and background to contribute as a board member while representing the diversity of the citizens of Bibb County?

  • I am been an engaged parent while my children attended the Bibb County Public Schools.
  • I have been a dedicated volunteer within the Bibb County Public Schools.
  • I served in the U. S. Navy as a Yeoman (administrative clerk and as an administrative supervisor at higher pay grades).
  • I worked as a production worker in a local factory.
  • I currently work part time as a standardized patient at the Mercer University School of Medicine.

I know that I can provide useful, while also being respectful to others on the board, insight as a citizen of Bibb County for over 35 years. I am a listener and can communicate well.

I also communicate with all levels of our local, state and nation on matters that impact on us all.

As a member of the Board I will always remember that it is my responsibility to be focused on the proper education of all Scholars.

In summary: I know that I can share the views of the citizens of Bibb County and also reflect and represent the concerns of these same citizens. I have an sincere and respectful appreciation of "Common Mankind and Common Womankind." I will use a "Common Sense" approach in my actions as a member of the Board while also remaining in compliance with the laws and ethics governing members of the School Board.

Do I have the commitment to do what is right for all children, even in the face of opposition?

  • My life of service to all the Citizens of the U. S. A. as a Sailor reflects that I know what "Service" is about.
  • The mantra in life is: "My Word is Good!"
  • I pledge to continue to act in the best interest of our Scholars as the Board seeks to provide the best education possible for all of our Scholars.
  • I am seeking this office because I believe that "We Can Do Better." This must be done, not only for our own security and well being; but for the future of our next generations. The Scholars of today and tomorrow also deserve a great life.
  • The Scholars of today will be providing the labor and services that our entire society will require in the future.

In Summary:

I desire that our current and future Scholars are afforded the education opportunities that have allowed me to have a productive and blessed life.

I also know that my current campaign will be the model for my actions as a member of the School Board. We need to obtain the maximum impact for the financial resources expended.

As the world currently struggles with the economy I will always know that jobs are essential, but that an excellent education will also be a priority for all citizens. I would suggest that we cannot have jobs without an excellent education. A World Class education for the Future. We can achieve this with a World Class Work Force. As a member of the Board I will always strive for educational excellence and the establishment of policy to make educational excellence possible.

Please Vote for "Alan Thiese" on November 2, 2010.

Thank You!!

Published by Alan Thiese

Candidate for Post 8, Bibb County Georgia School Board