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Maple Grove Voice

Election 2016: Osseo School District 279 School Board Candidate Pa Ann

Oct 28, 2016 07:30PM ● By Wendy Erlien

Pa Ann

Pa Ann is among 10 candidates on the 2016 election ballot for three seats on the Osseo School District 279 School Board. 

Osseo School District 279 candidates were asked several questions via email by Maple Grove Voice. Below are the responses from Pa Ann.

Q: What is your professional/personal background as it relates to the Osseo School District/School Board?

A:  My name is Pa Ann Neighborhood Health Specialist, with the City of Brooklyn Park; Public Policy, Leadership, Management, Political processes, governance and conflict resolution; Master’s in Public Affairs, concentrations in Global Public Policy, & Public and Nonprofit Leadership and Management, 2010. B.A Political Science, University of Minnesota, 2007; Osseo Area Schools, FISCAL Advisory Committee, present member; Steering Committee Brooklyn Park 2025 Strategic Plan; Multicultural Advisory Committee, Brooklyn Park Police Dpt.; former board member, Odyssey Academy Brooklyn Center; Community awareness activity, Minnesota Gambian Association; Retired Army Officer; three boy in school district; Enjoy nature, problem solving and reading.

Q Why are you running for office?

A:  As a resident and a new immigrant to this “land of opportunity”, I realized as a parent the least I can do to support my kids and all the children, is to give my support where and how I can to the efforts already on the way by teachers and administrative staff.  I have lived in the Osseo school district for over 15 years and have three sons who attend schools in the district.  I have watched the system work well for them. 

Nonetheless, the system has not worked well for all our children and that should change.   That is why I am running to be elected for school board.  I have the skill set and collaborative leadership experience needed for that change.

Q:  How do you feel you can make an impact by serving on the Osseo School District School Board?

A:  I also have enormous skill set which can be reasonably adapted to some of the needs of the children of this School district, especially my unique background as a recent immigrant. Above all, I want my boys and all kids in the district to achieve excellence, with the right amount of support to the teachers and administration, it ca be done. This is the backdrop of my decision to run for the 279 School board.

Q:  What do you feel is the biggest challenge facing the school district?

A:  The following are the pertinent areas that I will focus on as a member of the school board: Having the necessary conversation with teachers’ administrators to identify priorities for overcoming the bottlenecks we are experiencing, (no one else is more suited to provide the substance and technical information needed to accomplish that).

a.  Closing the achievement gap

b.  Increasing the achievement levels

c.   A focus on low performing schools

d.  Teacher retention measures

e.  More adaptive teacher curriculum for teacher training

f.   Hiring more qualified diverse teacher force

g.  More liaison with respective city leadership forming up school district to celebrate and work together on common challenges

In my view, the most effective way to achieve these goals is through and by listening to and working closely with teachers, they are the front line troops, and what is at stake is our collective development and progress as a community and a people, all of which rest on the fundamentals of a great quality education system, ready to engage the present, but also prepared for the future.

Q:  What would you like voters/community members to know about you?

A:  I would like them to know that am very passionate about the children in the district, in order words their futures and the success of our communities in general. I have the needed skills set to effectively work with others to find workable solutions for our students and the school district. I am a hard worker, and would work hard for excellence for all our children.

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