Editorial: Serve students by joining the school board

School boards make critical decisions about how children are educated and staff are compensated. But there has been hardly any interest for one seat on the Bend-La Pine School Board.

There was little interest for the position that represents La Pine, Sunriver and the rest of southern Deschutes County. The board made the right decision to extend the deadline for submissions until Sept. 19 at 4 p.m.

Competition for such an important position would be good.

Serving on the school board is a volunteer position. But it is no small commitment of time and effort.

There aren’t many official school board meetings — about two a month — but there are many other events and meetings. And to be effective and make a responsible contribution, there’s a lot of homework involved.

Board members set the goals and vision for the district and may weigh in on personnel matters, wage and benefit negotiations, lawsuits, curriculum, state and federal mandates, discipline and more. Candidates should be interested in working as part of a team and in regularly visiting their adopted schools.

The board has an open seat because Mike Jensen has announced his resignation. He was elected to a four-year term in May 2013. The person appointed will serve through June 30, 2015, and could then file to run to the end of the term, which is June 30, 2017. Applicants must have lived within Zone 4 for a year and be a registered voter.

If you are looking for a way to give back to the community or get involved, apply. It’s your chance to make a difference in education.

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