Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education Candidate Maureen Lynn
Education: B.S., Industrial Engineering, Penn State University
Current occupation: Consultant
The School District has made a commitment to diversity, inclusion, and educational equity. Do you agree with this commitment? If yes, what would you do as a Board member to support those values and promote student success?
The CHUH schools and the community have always been a champion of diversity and inclusion and I absolutely support this continued effort. In the schools, it is imperative that each student is treated respectfully, fairly and equitably. I would ensure that across all of the schools, students are given the same opportunities to succeed. Each of the schools needs to offer the same programs and resources for every student’s success. Funding for each school should be equitably distributed so that the maximum amount is allocated for the student.
Regarding the Community Learning Center (“CLC”) that the School District and some community partners are implementing at Noble Elementary School, how would you as a Board member support the CLC and encourage the Noble community to utilize its wraparound social and medical services?
The Noble Community Learning Center is an excellent resource for these families and students. As a Board Member, I would engage the community and families to understand the most essential needs that they would be seeking. Based on this, programs can be prioritized and properly funded. I would also seek Federal & State funding to support this program to ensure that it is thriving and sustainable. If this Center is successful, I would also look to expanding it into the other CHUH School communities.
What actions do you think the Board should take to maintain the fiscal health of the School District? How would these actions affect the quality of its academic and extracurricular offerings?
As a Board Member, I would like to conduct a State Performance Audit. This audit is a full review of the school district’s finances and operations. It is conducted by a team from the Ohio’s State Auditor who have performed audits in over 80 school districts since 2011. The last CHUH Schools' performance audit by the state was in 1999 and identified $6-7 million in potential savings. The goal would be to find the inefficiencies, overspending and fund mismanagement so as to maximize the in-classroom spending. Overall quality of education and other activities would improve when the funds are properly allocated to focus on the students.
What role should environmental considerations play in the Board of Education’s policies and actions?
Any new and/or existing school policies should take environmental impacts into consideration especially when they are able to generate cost savings, enhance efficiencies and improve the student experience. The CHUH Schools should strive to be free of toxins, use sustainable resources and create a safe & healthy place for students. In addition, schools must lead the conversation on environmental awareness with the students. This will encourage the students to engage in protecting their environment and can help the entire community become more environmentally aware.
What challenges or opportunities do you think are presented by the School District’s continued ownership of properties that are no longer used for classroom purposes?
The continued ownership of unused or under-utilized CHUH school properties is a financial burden on the district and the community. Selling or re-purposing buildings could provide more funding for the classroom and student support, which should always be the ultimate goal. Also if the student enrollment continues to decline, the Board needs to determine if existing buildings are being efficiently and effectively utilized.