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OUSD election profile: Sarah Butler

By Jonathan Morales
Friday, September 17th, 2010 at 4:59 pm in Orinda, Schools.

Sarah Butler 2010Last in our series of profiles of candidates for the Orinda Union School District governing board.

In running for the school board, Sarah Butler touts her history of experience volunteering in the schools. The 12-year Orinda resident has been an EFO board member, a School Site Council member at Glorietta and Miramonte, a coordinator for parcel tax measures A (Acalanes) and B (OUSD) and on the Acalanes Budget Advisory Committee, among other positions.

“I feel like I would have a lot to offer because I have a lot of background, not only in the classroom but in key committees,” she said.

Butler has two children, one at Orinda Intermediate and another at Miramonte. She has spent the last few years volunteering the schools but before that worked in environmental planning.

Echoing her fellow school board candidates, Butler said the biggest issue facing the district is the fiscal crisis. In the face of that crisis, she said, the board needs to look at all options for dealing with budget woes while at the same time preserving the district’s reputation for high-quality education.

“We would have to look at all options and the key is having a good community process about it to get feedback from all stakeholders,” Butler said, adding the most important things for the students are quality teachers and small class sizes.

Given the challenges, Butler said the district will have to consider an additional parcel tax and find out if there is community support for such a measure.

“I think it come down to what’s going to come from the state next year and do we live with that or explore other options for revenue as well?” she said. The district can also try for state and federal grants, but those are difficult to get, she added.

With three new members coming to the board, Butler said there will be a combination of experience and fresh faces. But she said she feels she brings a combination of both.

“I already have a knowledge of the school board meetings and how the school board operates,” she said.

Profiles of Tyson Krumholz, Christopher Severson, Julie Rossiter, and Bekki Van Voorhis-Gilbert.

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