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Letter: Support for Sauser

To the editor,

I'm writing to encourage readers in the Farmington School district to support Melissa Sauser for School Board this Nov. 2. We have good schools in ISD 192, but we can do better.

I've been Melissa's neighbor and friend for five years. Her background includes a college degree in international politics. In 2004 she worked as a full time substitute in Early Childhood Special Education at Meadowview Elementary. From 2005 to 2007 she served as an English as a Second Language paraprofessional at Edina High School.

Melissa has a plan to improve communication between the schools and parents. This includes improving the district's web site to provide important and timely information for parents concerning class size, safety, public health and transportation issues, weather decisions, class schedule, curriculum and staff changes as well as school board meeting minutes. It could also include an open forum bulletin board to allow parental feedback. Before referendums are put to a vote, parents and teachers could review and comment on them.

Additionally, there are underutilized technologies that could allow real-time classroom links between schools within the district. This could allow for one teacher to reach two or more classrooms. She has ideas as to how this could be done with existing technology and funding.

Melissa strongly believes that school board members should be visible and accessible to the public they serve. This includes a presence at every open house for each school by at least one school board member. She would also like to see members of the school board occasionally attending PTP meetings. There is no substitute for face-to-face contact.

Finally, Melissa is a strong advocate for fiscal responsibility. There is about $19 million left over from the 2006 levy for the new high school and elementary school. She believes that the money should be used to pay off existing debut debt bonds or returned to the tax payers as a rebate.

Melissa shares our values, has the passion for education and offers practical solutions to improve our schools. Please join me and cast your vote for her on Nov. 2.

Robert Italiano,