The month of January marks the annual observance of School Board Recognition Month.

The month of January marks the annual observance of School Board Recognition Month. The Leavenworth Unified School District is joining school districts across the state to thank the community volunteers that demonstrate their ongoing commitment and dedication to public education.

Public education is the backbone of American society, and local school boards are deeply rooted in U.S. tradition. In 1966 the people of Kansas amended the state's constitution to specifically call for local public schools that are 'maintained, developed, and operated by locally elected boards.' The job of a school board member is tough, the hours long, and the thanks few and far between.

"Being a school board member is sometimes described as one of the 'toughest volunteer job in America.' Yet our board of education members dedicate countless hours to attending meetings, school functions, and keeping informed on issues facing our school community," said Dr. Kelly Crane, Superintendent of Schools. "They also participate in professional development through conferences, workshops, and webinars to stay on top of the ever changing education landscape. It is a significant commitment of time and energy."
This is a time to not only show our appreciation for our board of education members, but also to educate our school community about the key work and role of a school board. Our board of education establishes a vision for the education program, maintains the structure to achieve that vision, and provides accountability to the community.
The Leavenworth Board of Education's vision for the school district is identified through their established goals: maximize the academic performance of each student; attract and retain quality teachers and administrators; improve collaboration and community engagement of our school district; ensure adequate facilities and safe schools; and maximize funding and prioritize spending based upon the educational needs of students.

The men and women currently serving the Leavenworth School District are:
Marti Crow
Dr. Paul Kittle
Nancy Klemp
Mo Minchew
Verna Raines
Mike Robinson
Loyal Torkelson

"We are grateful to have this opportunity to formally say 'thank you' to our board for their service and advocacy on behalf of the Leavenworth community," said Dr. Crane.

Showing appreciation for the important work of school boards should be a year-round process. This January, the staff and students of our district are asking all members of the community to take a moment and thank a school board member. Thank them for giving of their time and fulfilling this civic responsibility to make local control of public schools in our community possible.

Submitted by the Leavenworth School District.