Meredith Maple and Maggie Matheson run for School Board Seat G

Published: Sep. 29, 2023 at 9:51 AM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - Meredith Maple and Maggie Matheson are running for seat G on the Fairbanks North Star Borough School Board.

Maple would like to see the school board function at a higher level. “I would like to see our school board really balance information, whether that’s community perspective, educators’ perspective, and also expert testimony, and make decisions that very clearly balance all of that information, and to do that we need to have a school board that engages in active listening to every single piece of information that’s coming their way.”

She supports more access to preschool and early childhood education in the district if the budget allows. “Access to early childhood education to preschool... has a lifelong impact. Access to early childhood education to preschool means higher graduation rates from high school. It means better job placement after high school. It means better mental health into adulthood.”

She also values the programs that help students experiencing homelessness, foster care, and other potential obstacles to academic success. “What they need is advocacy for these students, the students that they’re serving, and they need it at every level. They need it at the school board level, at the assembly level, at the state level because there are systems that are in place that are failing the students that are being served by our Student Support Services, and I want to be able to be an advocate for those students.”

Meanwhile, incumbent Matheson is running to retain Seat G for another term.

Matheson said she wants to continue doing good work for the community. “I’ve had six of our seven children graduate from our school district. When we first started signing up our students, or our children, into our school district, the schools were wonderful. Right now, Zillow and, they are rating our school district as below average,” she said.

She explained some district policies have, over time, because outdated or obsolete. “Alaska laws have changed. Federal laws have changed where classes that were not once protected are now protected, and our policies need to reflect that we are hand in hand with what our laws are saying.”

Matheson would like to help heal division in the community and have a hand in guiding the new Superintendent. “He’s got some great ideas, and collaborating with him, I feel that that division, we can break down those barriers and those walls. By setting up good policies, good guardrails as to what our teachers can and can’t speak on makes it so that parents will have to have those hard conversations with their children, but it is the parents’ job to do that.”

Maple and Matheson appear on the ballot for the October 3 municipal election.

More information about the candidates and the 2023 election season can be found here.