Weatherford Democrat

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April 24, 2013

Q&A: Profiles for the races for places 4,5 on Weatherford ISD board

(Continued)

Are you in favor of the $107.32 million bond proposal? Why or why not?

Yes. Many of our campuses are at a crucial stage of need, security and expansion. This cannot be overlooked because it will impede the welfare and success of students.

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Name: Gail Wirtanen

Occupation: sales

Family: two children, Susan and Sandra

Why are you running for school board?

As I see it, a successful school district leads to a successful community. My time on the school board has afforded me the opportunity to give back to this wonderful community and insure our kids are given the best opportunity to succeed.

Any prior experience running for office?

I don’t consider myself a politician and my only experience running for public office is my service to the school board.

Are you in favor of the $107.32 million bond proposal? Why or why not?

I am committed to the passage of the bond and its benefit for our kids. The last time we asked the community to support a bond election was 14 years ago, in 1999. With the growth in Weatherford, changes in technology and societal changes, I would say we have been very good stewards of the public’s funds.

The bond addresses four critical areas: capacity, safety/security, technology and capital improvements.

Capacity: overcrowding at the K-6 elementary schools is a concern. We have students in portable buildings and attending classes in areas of the school not intended for classroom instruction. The bond will address this by adding a ninth-grade wing to the high school, using the Main Street campus for seventh and eighth with Hall and Tison housing fifth and sixth. This would keep our existing neighborhood elementary schools but change them to K-4.

Safety and security: The safety of our students and staff is always at the forefront of our decisions. We will have a self-contained high school campus, eliminating shuttles. Each campus will receive secure entry areas, security cameras, improved exterior lighting, fencing, keyless entry and upgrades to the classroom door-locking systems. Portable buildings will be removed.

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