Greendale voters will go to the polls on April 5 in what is likely to be one of the most watched Village elections in many years. There are five candidates for Greendale’s Village Board and four candidates for the Greendale school board. Many voters have been wondering where the candidates stand on the issues. In an email interview with each candidate, Everything Greendale asked identical questions. The Q&A interviews will be published in their entirety over the coming days. In the second of a nine part series, Everything Greendale interviews School Board candidate Mary Grogan.
Q: What are the three biggest challenges facing the school district?
This question should be posed by the new Superintendent to parents, students, teachers, administrators and residents. Once that data is collected, it should be presented to the School Board, by the Superintendent. The data should be prioritized and aligned with the District’s Strategic Plan. With this information, the School Board can then act.
It appears that the three biggest challenges facing the school district are: increasing transparency, the community working together to honor the Veterans with a Memorial, and the School Board consistently collaborating with the community. In short, coming together as a community by building trust, increasing communication and working together. The only way to verify and clarify potential challenges would be with a 360 survey.
Q: How would you improve the relationship between the Village and schools?
Each School Board Member has only one vote and one voice, but improving any relationship involves: clearing the air, improving communication, resolving to bury the past and begin again. It is in the best interest of both Boards to get along. Every effort should be made to increase contact and communication between the two Boards, with the intent of resolving any personal or professional conflict as quickly, thoroughly and permanently as possible.
Q: Do you support removing voting from Greendale school buildings now that the school district has adjusted their calendar during elections?
It’s my understanding that this issue has been resolved.
Q: What ideas do you have that improve the school district?
This question seems similar to question number one. Greendale High School is ranked #11 in the state, which is something to celebrate. Researching what is going on at high school #1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 would provide a list of improvements for The Greendale School District to discuss with the Superintendent and the community.
Q: Would you support school district plans for a referendum to support improvements to school buildings and facilities?
A referendum must have voter support. If the residents of Greendale want a referendum, I would support it. My job as a School Board Member is to bring the voters’ voices to the School Board table.
Q: Which Greendale community leader (elected or otherwise) do you respect, and why?
This is a very difficult question to answer, as there are several. Bob Rundle, my former boss at Greendale Park and Recreation comes to mind, as do the founding families of Greendale Twi-night. However, I have enormous respect for The Department of Public Works: the Greendale Educators, the Greendale Police and Fire Fighters, and Public Health Nurses, because they work day in and day out, making Greendale great.
Bio from the Candidate
I grew up in Greendale in both the “S” section and Overlook Farms. During my 25 years away, I have built a unique resume. The combination of my hometown roots and my vast experience makes me a strong School Board Candidate. Most recently, I served on a School Board in Sauk County, during the Walker Recall election. Nothing was quite as exciting or quite as challenging.
I look forward to bringing my time, talent and experience back home to Greendale. I would be happy to provide a copy of my resume to any interested voters. I have already provided a copy to the Forum Hosts and Everything Greendale. In short, I have “tasted every piece of the Education pie:” K-12 from Milwaukee Public Schools — to Homeschooling — to rural Public — to Private Catholic — to the School Board table. I have done so as a Parent, as a Teacher and as a Resident. This puts me in a unique position to give back to the community I grew up in.
Three Biggest Challenges
“It appears that the three biggest challenges facing the school district are: increasing transparency, the community working together to honor the Veterans with a Memorial, and the School Board consistently collaborating with the community.” — Mary Grogan
Voting in Schools
“It’s my understanding that this issue has been resolved.” — Mary Grogan
Support of a Referendum
“If the residents of Greendale want a referendum, I would support it. My job as a School Board Member is to bring the voters’ voices to the School Board table.” — Mary Grogan