Election 2002: Experience counts for incumbent

If Sylvia Sims DeLay is re-elected for a second term on the San
Benito High School District Board of Trustees, she feels the new
superintendent will be the most important factor for Trustees.
If Sylvia Sims DeLay is re-elected for a second term on the San Benito High School District Board of Trustees, she feels the new superintendent will be the most important factor for Trustees.

“We’ll be getting to know him or her and working with him or her,” she said. “I don’t know what the reaction is going to be from the public or the teachers, but we’ve worked very hard to make sure the qualifications of that person are met.”

The Board is currently in the hiring process for a new superintendent and is expected to have one aboard in January.

Sims DeLay is vying for one of three open seats against incumbents Ken Kovanda and Judy Rider, and challengers Stefani Fowler, Jan Joseph and Bill Tiffany on Tuesday.

The freshman campus, which the school plans to build and has set aside funds for, is something the Board will need to tackle within the coming years.

“The freshman campus will be a pretty big issue for the Board to deal with,” Sims DeLay said.

If elected for a second term, the incumbent would like feedback from parents and staff on how to improve programs at the school.

“I would really like to go in there and listen to what they have to say and improve it,” Sims DeLay said. “Programs are important. I would like to make sure programs are up to par, make certain if parents or students feel a program is neglected, hear what’s going on and effect it in a positive way.”

The discipline policies at the school, which came under fire earlier this year for being inconsistent, is a work in progress, she said.

“One of the things we’re working on is disciplinary process,” she said. “We’ve changed a lot of things and there’s been an improvement to make it more fair. We dissected the disciplinary process and corrected anything that was wrong. We want to continue keeping an eye on that as problems are presented.”

Sims DeLay said she is always willing to listen to comments from outside sources and bring the comments back to Trustees, also adding that her experience is valuable to the Board.

“When you’re in it for just four years, you’re just getting your feet wet,” she said. “It takes a while to understand the students, teachers, budget and administration. I don’t think four years is enough time for the average person to accomplish what they’d like to accomplish and because I think I’ve done a lot of good as Board member, I’d like to continue.”

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