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District 833 School Board candidate: Thor Halverson

Name: Thor Halverson

Age: 46

City: Woodbury

Occupation: Teacher/coach/lawyer

Family: Wife Sheri, daughter Kjerstin, 15; son Erik, 13.

Incumbent or challenger: Challenger

How do your skills or experience set you apart as a candidate?

I have taught social studies and coached soccer in South Washington County at Woodbury High School and East Ridge High School. One of the only A's I got in law school was in Education law. I have interned at the State Capitol and I understand how government works.

What do you believe the school board can do to narrow academic achievement gaps?

We can make policies that ensure that every student gets a fair shot and give teachers the resources they need. Regardless of category, some people just have an easier time in the classroom than others. Teachers need to continue to encourage kids. Some are just learning English, some have learning disabilities or other situations that make achievement more difficult, some don't school seriously. From my experiences teachers are doing a good job, but sometimes need more resources.

Is the budget and school funding the biggest challenge facing the district?

Budget is the biggest issue facing the district and I have already contacted my state legislators about the funding deficit and I will continue to do so. We must pass the referendums but put pressure on our legislators to fund our district adequately.