Holt: School board members need an open mind

  • By Bill Holt
  • Tuesday, September 30, 2014 9:38pm
  • Opinion

I have enjoyed being a member of the KPBSD Board of Education for the past six years. The experience has been productive and very rewarding. I am currently serving as the school board representative on the Career and Technical Advisory Committee (CTAC), the Kenai Peninsula School Activities Association (KPSAA) executive board of directors, the school board’s Legislative Affairs committee and the Charter School Oversight committee. I hope to continue my participation on these committees if I am re-elected to the school board.

My wife Kathy and I have raised our three children, Galen, Marina and Ellen in Kasilof and all three have attended and graduated from peninsula schools and all have gone on to graduate from college. Raising our kids in Kasilof and working with the schools they attended gave me a great appreciation for our area schools. I have been a commercial fisherman for over 40 years and this work has afforded me the opportunity to spend winters helping raise my children and the chance to participate with their school activities. I have been an assistant ski coach at Soldotna Middle, Soldotna High and Skyview High schools. I worked at Skyview High School for five years as the Community Schools Coordinator and as the pool aide. My wife, Kathy, has followed her commitment to education even farther and is now a teacher at Soldotna Montessori Charter School. I was a board member of the Tsalteshi Trails Association for twelve years and am currently the Tsalteshi Trails Maintenance and Development Director. My work on the trails as well as my work on the school board has kept me in close contact with peninsula students and their families.

Five years ago I helped start the Tsalteshi Trails Youth Ski Program for kids 6-12 years old and we have now successfully grown the program to 150 children and their supportive parents. I am a firm believer in the benefits of outdoor education and am proud that this program is an asset for our young students and our whole community. As a member of the school board and the Physical Education Curriculum Committee I will continue to encourage geographically specific physical education activities. We need to embrace our Alaskan climate and find activities that our kids can carry with them throughout their lives. The schools can do more to get kids outside.

Working on the school board requires commitment and a willingness to look at problems with an open mind, to be able to see the issues from more than one perspective and be able to make decisions that best support the success of our children. I look forward to continuing my service with the students, families, teachers, administrators and support staff of the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District.