Name: Alexandra Hedberg
Occupation: Stay at home mom; contract writer for The College Board
Family: Husband; son, 3; and daughter, 9 months.
Incumbent or challenger: Challenger
How do your skills or experience set you apart as a candidate?
My deep experience working in education will make me an asset to the District 833 school board. My entire professional career has been in the field of education. I was a public school teacher in Boston for seven years prior to moving to Woodbury. Since relocating to the Midwest, I have worked as a caretaker, a tutor, and a contractor for The College Board. These professional experiences have given me expertise in how to provide a rigorous academic environment that meets the needs of all students. My teaching background will enable me to effectively work with the school leadership and teacher's union to achieve the best results possible.
What do you believe the school board can do to narrow academic achievement gaps?
As a teacher, my students were all from Boston's underserved communities. My work was focused on closing the achievement gap and creating an educational environment for all students that positioned them for future success. The best, more effective ways to narrow the achievement gap are: hire, develop, and retain excellent teachers; develop a rigorous curriculum that focuses on mastering academic skills and not only memorizing content; and carefully track student data to monitor progress. The school board must focus on supporting teachers and creating a professional environment that enables them to be successful.
Is the budget and school funding the biggest challenge facing the district?
From my external perspective, I think the biggest challenge with setting a budget with limited resources is determining the appropriate funding levels for such a broad and dissimilar set of programs. Everything from academics, to athletics, to other extracurriculars needs to be considered and funded at a level that will provide the best overall experience for our students. I would work with the school board to create a process that allows us to gather feedback from all key stakeholders and to use that information to make difficult decisions. Having the right process in place is a critical first step to evaluating and prioritizing the various educational components.