Two candidates are running to fill two positions on the Morenci Board of Education. Incumbent Carrie Dillon is seeking another term and Larry Bruce is running to fill the seat vacated by Gary Ries who is retiring from the board.
Board members are now elected to six-year terms of office.
Larry Bruce is a retired Morenci teacher and coach who worked in the Morenci school district for 29 years.
He and his wife, Sharon, raised two children, Kirk and Kirsten, who graduated from Morenci, and they have four grandchildren.
“My major reason and goal that I am running is to keep the Morenci school system intact, if that is possible.
“The major problems for the school are financial and the school of choice options. We need to maintain and hopefully increase the present school enrollment.”
Carrie Dillon has lived in Morenci for 30 years and raised one son, Matthew McCowan, who, she said, received an exceptional education in Morenci.
Dillon works for the State of Michigan with the Unemployment Insurance Agency in Detroit as an Unemployment Insurance Business Analyst.
“My job is to make sure our computer services, phone systems and all applications are available to the public and our employees,” she said. “I am currently working on a new development system for our Benefits side that will be available in September 2013.”
“I feel the experience I bring to Morenci Area Schools as a board member is the fact I can communicate and relate with all parents, teachers and community members. I am committed to being a part of our children’s education by supporting our staff and encouraging students to be positive and open to learning. Our children today live in a very complex world and need all the role modeling and encouragement to succeed in today’s world. I dedicate my time to the Morenci Area Schools through volunteering for several events and this is the way I stay connected to our school and students. I enjoy seeing students showing pride and enthusiasm through several school events.
“My main reason for serving as a school board member is I believe that I am a stakeholder in public education and I have a job to support our administrators, teachers and support staff as well as our students in the community. The second reason is that I truly enjoy watching our students learn in the educational environment we provide to our students in Morenci. The reason Morenci Area Schools exists is because of the students that attend Morenci and they are entitled to the very best public education. My job as a school board member is to make sure they are receiving the best education possible.
“The goals I have for Morenci are:
• To set and meet high expectations for academic achievement for all students in order to prepare them for a productive adult life, continuing education and responsible citizenship.
• To set and meet high standards for the performance of teachers and administrators leading to and evidenced by improved student learning.
• To provide a teaching and learning climate where racial, ethnic and economic isolation is reduced and the diversity of our student population is embraced.
I believe the main challenge for Morenci is balancing our budget by staying out of deficit, maintaining and/or attracting new students to our community and restoring the commitment to our community that we are an independent school.
I feel the State of Michigan needs to work and create a school aid fund that supports public education. Without consistent funding we are forced to make decisions that are not ‘popular’ but must be done in order to stay in business for the educational purposes of our students in Morenci.”