Kendon H. Perry
Candidate - Zone 4 Trustee
City of residence: Sagle
Years of residence: 3.5 years in Bonner County and 33-year resident of Idaho
Family: Married for 15 years to Judy. Children, Aubrie 6th grade and Kyle 3rd grade at Sagle Elementary.
How can the public contact you?
Education: Graduated Coeur d’Alene High School 1978. B.S. degree in Agri-business and Natural Resource Mgmt from Eastern Oregon State College 1982
Recent employment history: Self employed for over 20 years in N. Idaho
1987-2003 Owner/President Filter Service Inc.
2001-present Agent/Registered Representative Farm Bureau Financial Services and Insurance Company
Public offices held: None
Groups to which you belong:
Past Board member United Way of Kootenai County
Past board member and board chairperson Kootenai County YMCA
Past Board member Inland Empire YMCA
Current board member LOVE INC. Sandpoint
Current board member Rotary Club of Sandpoint
Current board member and VP Sandpoint Little League
Current coach Sandpoint Little League baseball team
Current coach Team Independence. Alpine youth ski team
What particular experiences or skills qualify you to serve on the school board? I can transfer my business background and other board experiences to the school board. Prepare and work within the constraints of a budget, set goals, and communicate the goals to the community.
Why are you running for trustee?
I have a passion for providing my kids and their peers a great education experience. I also have a vision of greatness for LPOSD. We are very blessed to live in a great community and region- our education system should equal the quality of life we enjoy in Bonner County. With two active kids my wife and I are involved in the schools and I believe we as citizens have an obligation to give back to society, share our time/talents, and endeavor to make the world and our community a better place.
How much time can you devote to board service?
My business and excellent support staff allow me the flexibility to set my own schedule, therefore, I can attend the twice monthly board meetings as well as “other” meetings necessary to serve on the school board.
How frequently have you attended school board meetings?
Have you been involved in any other school activities or groups?
I have been on field trips with my kids and I have been involved the past two years with Mars Rover activity at Sagle elementary. As noted above I work with school age children from November-June as a coach. I was also actively involved in the two recent LPOSD levies.
Do you believe the district is doing a good job or poor job in educating students?
I think the district is doing a good job I’m also convinced we need to raise our expectations and continue to inspire our students. In particular we need to increase the percentage of our students that plan to attend college and better prepare them so our actual college and tech school entrance and graduation rate increases. This community needs to expect and provide a great education experience for our children.
Describe the top three to five issues you believe are facing our school district, and your position on these issues.
A. Improve resources for our educators and meet their passion for teaching with acceptable and sufficient resources. Teachers should spend their time and efforts teaching not scratching for money or reaching in their pockets to meet the needs of their students.
B. Improve our facilities. The condition and capacity of our facilities is unacceptable and we have not invested in our facilities and the volume of deferred maintenance is and will continue to cost us money and more in the long run.
C. LPOSD faculty has a significant percentage of teachers nearing retirement and when we factor in the high cost of housing in Bonner County LPOSD will be challenged to attract and retain top quality teachers.
D. Establish a long-term funding mechanism that will replace our need for supplemental levies. Thus allowing LPOSD the ability to create and support programs that address the needs of our student population. This requires a very long and big vision coupled with the ability to communicate this vision as well as the desire and ability to reach out to the individuals in our community that can fund such a vision. The state will not solve our funding challenges for education in the near term therefore the school board and LPOSD must “think outside the current box” and be willing to creatively generate new funding sources.
What changes, if any, would you seek in the district’s curriculum?
I think this is more a question for the teachers. Their expertise is teaching whereas the board is charged with establishing goals, gathering facts, and ensuring the goals (short-term, intermediate, and long-term) and objectives of the district are implemented. Speaking from the perspective of a parent I think the district needs to first concentrate efforts and resources on teaching the basics- our students need be very proficient in the three R’s: reading, writing, and arithmetic. Once this is accomplished we need to expand our resources and efforts to prepare students for college, trade school, and ultimately a career.
What do you see as the role of technology in education?
In the world our children will compete in they need to be very competent with the ever changing world of technology. Virtually every industry in our economy relies on technology. My generation is learning as technology changes and the students, current and future will create that change. Technology is vital for our students to matriculate out of high school and college in to the workforce. We also need to expand the use of technology in our delivery of education.
What changes, if any, should be made in the district’s budget?
I think the district made a very positive step forward with the 2007-09 budgets. But I firmly believe there were/are some areas that if communicated and justified to the voters could have been included. I firmly believe this community will support our schools if we continue to be prudent with the budget, solicit their support by selling the good things our district has accomplished, justify the expense, and asking for enough resources for teachers to teach. A successful business and school district is always looking towards growth opportunities.
Did you support or oppose the recent supplemental levy (which passed)?
Yes I actively supported the supplemental levy.
Describe how you view the district’s current facilities needs.
Huge Need! Parents, supporters, and detractors need only visit our school buildings during class or between class periods and the needs will be painfully obvious. A prime example is to attempt to walk between classes from the SHS portables on the north side walking to the south side and NOT BE TARDY.
Did you support or oppose the school plant facility election last fall (which failed)?
Yes, I supported the plant facility election in principal but not necessarily its timing and delivery.
What, if anything, should our school district do about teaching values?
Unfortunately society and many parents now expect our school system to expand the scope of education. Therefore our district does need to teach citizenship and values. My parents and grandparents instilled in my siblings and me the “Golden Rule” and if we could just use that as the benchmark for society and in our education system life would certainly be better.
Should our district teach about family life, sex education, AIDS?
I do believe we need to teach practical life skills to our students-how to balance a checkbook, save 10% for a rainy day. School is a safe environment and we should educate our students about sex and the ramifications of sex…pregnancy and STD’s.
The education system/process for students in 2007 and beyond is very different and much more challenging than that of their parents and grandparents. Our world is changing so quickly and information is so immediate, therefore, our education system needs to be adaptable to change yet retain or even regain some of the structure that created the public school system. I truly believe our public school is a large supporter of the back bone of society and we as Americans need to recognize the shrinking and competitive world we now live in. We must take the responsibility of preparing our children and invest in them and their future. Their future will be competing locally, nationally, and globally.