Election 2002: Joseph wants to build trust

Jan Joseph wants to rebuild the distrust that he says has broken
down communication throughout San Benito High School.
Jan Joseph wants to rebuild the distrust that he says has broken down communication throughout San Benito High School.

Joseph, who is running for the San Benito High District District Board of Trustees on Nov. 5, said he has met with the superintendent, the teachers union and about 70 teachers and found an atmosphere without proper communication.

“A common denominator I found was a huge lack of trust between the community and administration, the community and (school) Board, teachers and administration; every party said the same thing,” Joseph said. “My biggest thrust would be to rebuild trust between the community, Board and teachers by building trust through better communication and listening skills.”

Joseph is a father of four children, all of which attended SBHS, and is vying for one of three open seats against incumbents Sylvia Sims DeLay, Ken Kovanda and Judy Rider, and challengers Stefani Fowler and Bill Tiffany.

Joseph said he can deal with diverse ethic backgrounds from his experience traveling and dealing with other cultures.

The second goal Joseph would like to accomplish if elected is to increase the quality of education by supporting college preparation courses and to lower the turnover rate of teachers at the school.

“We should be retaining quality teachers,” Joseph said. “There is a huge turnover (of teachers at the school).”

One reason for the turnover rate is that teachers are feeling overwhelmed with extra demands and they don’t have enough support, Joseph said.

Joseph’s third goal is to re-evaluate the school’s zero tolerance policy and create a consistent discipline approach. The high school’s zero tolerance policy came under question from some as being inconsistent and overly harsh.

“I think the zero tolerance policies are important, but they consistently need to be applied,” he said.

Joseph also said the school is behind in its technology and he would like to see upgrades in computers for the school.

“I think it’s very important that those students have what they need and to be exposed to have those necessary tools,” he said. “The school Board’s mission is to be a governing Board that reaches out to the community and provides leadership and stewardship to the school with trust and academics,”

Joseph notes that 25 percent of SBHS graduates go on to four-year colleges and feels the mission of the high school is to prepare students for the world after high school.

Joseph is endorsed by the:

– San Benito High School Teachers’ Association

– Hollister Elementary Schools Teachers’ Association

– Future Farmers of America Boosters

– League of United Latin American Citizens

– SBHS California Schools Employees’ Association

– Parents and Students for Educational Justice.

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