by Diana Haecker ~ October 1st, 2010
Voters will decide on a new slate of school board candidates at the Borough elections on October 5. Unlike the Borough Assembly, where voters select their district representative, the school district’s board of directors do not represented a specific geographical region.
This year, incumbent Myrl “Boone” Thompson of Big Lake is being challenged by Wasilla resident Lynn Gattis. The seat is seat G, which is generally thought of as the ‘upper valley seat’.
Gattis has lived in Alaska her entire life. She is excited about the new superintendent and believes he is more transparent than past administrators. She believes she’ll bring a different aspect to the Board on how to fix the problems, which is not to throw more money at it but do more with less. She believes that the ideas used in the past aren’t working and changes need to be made. She says that teachers are the biggest priority when it comes to contracts. Her mother lives in east Talkeetna and she either flies or drives up to Talkeetna often. She is the current assistant secretary of the Alaska GOP. Residents can follow her on twitter and her facebook page.
Thompson currently sits on the School Board. He spent about 4 years in Juneau writing about the legislature and says he learned a lot from the political process in those years. He says he is running for a second term because he wants to provide continuity on the board. He was apprehensive about the new administration but says the new superintendent is very professional and knowledgeable. He says it was hard to get straight answers about the budget in the past, but he believes that has changed for the better. He says he tends to go out of his way for the upper valley because they tend to lack representation. He enjoys the challenge of the Board and wants to continue to move the district forward and continuing improving schools in the district.
Voters will choose between Thompson and Gattis for Seat G. Susan Pougher, of Palmer, is running uncontested for Seat C. The current School Board president Colleen Vague, of Wasilla, is being challenged by Neal Lacy of Wasilla for Seat F.