With four Radnor-educated children, including children currently in the high, middle and elementary schools, I am deeply invested in Radnor Schools and have a first-hand perspective of all levels of our educational experience. If elected, I would use this perspective to support current District goals and priorities, each thoughtfully identified in the strategic planning process, while also helping to identify new initiatives to preserve and grow a robust educational experience for every student.
As I have done in my professional and personal life, I will work to create a collegial and collaborative environment for optimal board governance--a board that supports our District leadership, while also providing thoughtful and objective oversight for the benefit of our greater community.
As a longtime champion of public education, I am committed to public school advocacy in funding and policy so our District has the necessary resources, and freedom, to successfully serve our students.
Laura Foran - Candidate for School Board
My number one priority is to the children of Radnor - ALL OF THEM. We do a wonderful job with both our Gifted and Special Needs students but we are not as successful with our 'middle' kids. We often tout about a 95% rate of graduates going on to college. I would rather we could tout a 95% rate of community service, personal happiness, caring for our aging parents and service to others. It is wonderful to go to an Ivy League School but it is just as important to discover your passion and find a way to have it sustain you both financially and emotionally. Our 'average' kids are so often overlooked and when we expect so little from them? What message are we giving them? It has to be okay to be a Postal Worker, a Mechanic, a Tradesmen - Radnor needs to do more to make their dreams real, too. Three priorities? Reaching ALL students, supporting their dreams (not ours) and helping to create decent human citizens who have the tools to give back to others.
Ensuring that the District's recently approved initiatives such as our change in school start times and technology integration program are thoughtfully implemented and evaluated, and that our developing District goals and Priority Projects such as our Student Wellness and Facility Feasibility studies are pursued in a way the enhances the Radnor educational experience for each and every student and balances the District's capacity and resources.
Promoting and modeling optimum school board governance for the sake of student achievement. Research shows a strong link between the two. I will continue to work with all members of our community in a spirit of mutual respect, collaboration, and a shared commitment to success for all of our students.
Relentlessly advocating for appropriate state and federal funding of our public schools. Creating a more equitable balance among our various school funding sources is critical.
1. With over two decades’ experience representing some of the state's most well-known businesses, institutions and non-profit organizations in the region and Harrisburg, I aim to lend an experienced, non-partisan and collaborative voice to those advocating every day for the best interests of Radnor students and families, educators and other stakeholders.
2. Support the continued progress and goals being achieved by Superintendent Batchelor, his administrative team, and the School Board, but remain mindful of the District’s increasingly-strained financial resources.
3. Continue to include and engage the community by modeling the transparent and deliberative process that led to the recent vote to move back the Radnor High School start time. The inclusion of educators, parents, outside experts and others in the community to come up with a consensus on such a critical issue for our students was a model that can be utilized to study and consider other important initiatives in the future
1. Character building: As a multi-tour combat veteran who, since leaving the military, has spent many years in service of the public good, I aim to propose, champion, and oversee policies that allow our students to find meaning in serving purposes greater than themselves.
2. Social and emotional wellbeing: As a director at a nonprofit that provides peer-based emotional support to grieving families, I understand the cultural and societal stressors that face young people today. As such, I will support the enactment of policies in Radnor schools that ameliorate the often unconsidered effects of culture and technology among students.
3. Preparation for life after Radnor: As a working father with high hopes and expectations for two young children, I will use my position on the school board to prepare Radnor students for the responsibilities, rigors, and rewards that await them as they enter adulthood.
1. LEARNING IS NOW AND HAS ALWAYS BEEN MY TOP PRIORITY
Learning is social and emotional
“Decades of research in human development, cognitive and behavioral neuroscience, and educational practice and policy, as well as other fields, have illuminated that major domains of human development—social, emotional, cognitive, linguistic, academic—are deeply intertwined in the brain and in behavior. All are central to learning.” (The Consensus Statements of Evidence from the Council of Distinguished Scientists National Commission on Social, Emotional, and Academic Development of The Aspen Institute)
2. LONG-TERM FINANCIAL STABILITY
The bottom line in education finance is student success. I have encouraged a curricular driven budget process during my tenure as a board member.
3. BUILDING SUCCESSFUL LONG-TERM DISTRICT TECHNOLOGY CAPACITY
“District technology capacity is the ability of a school district to adopt, integrate, and routinely use technology to benefit teaching and learn
1. The holistic development of Radnor students' academic, social, and physical success. Remembering the "forgotten middle." Radnor does a fantastic job with the kids at either end of the spectrum, but sometimes the kids in the vast middle can get lost and forgotten.
2. Long-term financial planning for an expanding student body - what that means in terms of paying for more staff [if needed], and also what it means for our aging facilities. We need to have a long-term capital budget plan in place so that we are not surprised by repair bills for our buildings.
3. Balanced approach to technology. Computers, tablets and smartphones can be great. They can also be harmful to our kids. We need to have a balanced approach to how our kids are using these "glowing square-faced friends" so that they do not get addicted to them. We need to make sure the software we are buying is able to work across all types of devices, and that the devices work when the kids need them to work.
As a result of being raised by public school educators and educated within the public school system of New York State, I am passionate about public education. I am thankful to have had the opportunities and resources it provided me, and intend to be a strong advocate of the RTSD and the role it plays in the greater context of our community. All of our children should have access to the resources, services, and activities that our schools provide.
I will represent the Radnor community in an objective capacity, working as part of a team with the Superintendent and other board members. My business background will enable me to make difficult decisions thoughtfully, and with integrity, while ensuring civil and sound governance.
I intend to build upon the success of our schools by supporting our district’s goals and investigating new initiatives to further enhance the educational experience for all students. I will always strive to do what’s best for our children and our community.
#1: Collaborate and govern. A School Director serves as one of nine members, with the Superintendent as the chief executive. As an attorney and a former high school teacher, I respect the work of our educators and will promote responsive, transparent, and professional governance in the District by providing oversight and support—not micromanagement.
#2: Advocate for public education. As an RHS grad and a parent of children in Radnor schools, I have seen the power of public education. In an uncertain funding and policy environment, I will champion public education in our Commonwealth in order to secure a sustainable future for our schools.
#3: Support, monitor, and empower District initiatives. I value the current administration’s focus on “Challenging and Supporting All Students” and “Student Wellness,” and would work to ensure that the administration has the resources to serve all students while relying on data-driven oversight to meaningfully track progress on those goals.
Improvement on the utilization, deployment, and management of technology in the classroom
Assessing the demands on students from classes, homework, sports, clubs, and other activities in order to reset expectations on students and promote better student quality of life
Address the impact of social media on students, teachers, and parents by educating all involved on what the platforms are, what behaviors they promote, and how we can use them to our benefit while mitigating the potential harmful effects