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Jeffrey Rentzel runs for School Board Seat E

Published: Sep. 4, 2020 at 4:15 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - Jeffrey Rentzel is running for seat E on the Fairbanks North Star Borough School Board. This seat is currently held by Tim Doran.

Rentzel said he is running because “like many people here in the district, we are not satisfied with the decisions that the school board has recently been making, and we’re not pleased with the direction that they’re headed.”

He added, “For the last several years, the students have actually scored incredibly low on performance tests. Alaska itself has been last for the last several years in school performance and that needs to change. We are not providing the education that our children need to score well on these tests. And if they can’t perform math, reading, they’re going to be totally unprepared for the future.”

Rentzel said that when elected to a board, one can only do so much by oneself. “You need the help of others from that board, and I feel that I am a very cooperative person, very open-minded, willing to listen to the other side and make decisions in the best interest of everybody in the community, not just special interest groups.”

“I’m an open-minded individual. I’m fair, I listen, and I’m willing to work with everybody, which is very important when you’re on the school board, because you’ve got to be able to take everybody’s point of view into consideration and make a final decision. And I think that I can do that. I’ve done that throughout my adult life, and I feel that we need that on the school board,” he said.

He spoke about the effect of school closures on students, saying, “They’re getting further and further behind each day they’re out of school. Parents are finding it very difficult to be able to juggle school and their work, and it’s really becoming a burden on the community. We need to get those schools back open, we need to get the kids in schools, with the teachers, getting the education we are supposed to be providing them.”

“We need to prepare our kids for the future, because they are our future, and if they cannot function in the society, then they’re going to end up being a burden to that society,” Rentzel added.

According to Rentzel, one of his priorities is to make sure that funds are in the classroom. “When we contribute way too much to the administration, and not to the classroom, the kids are really, really suffering. And that’s my main goal, to make sure that we got as much money going into the classroom, for the students and the teachers. That’s one of my big priorities.”

Rentzel discussed the experience of a student whom he currently fosters. “The system let him down. He is a special needs child, and he had been overlooked for the first eight years of his education,” he said, adding, “That is a big disservice. That should never happen, and part of my motivation is because of that. We need to make sure that our students are prepared for the future.”

Rentzel is running against Doran in the municipal elections on October 6th.

Copyright 2020 KTVF. All rights reserved.

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