The Baldwin County Board of Education on Tuesday approved a list of 27 people assigned to the county’s first Community Advisory Task Force, charged with seeking ideas from citizens regarding school funding, curriculum, facilities, leadership and communication. The group will have public meetings twice per month at Robertsdale High School at 5:30 p.m., the first of which is scheduled for June 9.
Proposed as a response to a call from the public for greater transparency and citizen involvement in the wake of a failed sales tax initiative, the school board asked county commissioners and mayors from each of the county’s feeder patterns to nominate citizens to the task force. Some task force members have children or grandchildren in the school system, while others do not.
The task force is expected to deliver a set of recommendations to the board in September.
The task force is Liana Barnett, Bay Minette; Barbara Brown, Bay Minette; Todd Stewart, Bay Minette; Paul Hollingsworth, Robertsdale; Chris Hadley, Robertsdale; Dewane Hayes, Rosinton; Jimmy Davis, Summerdale; Kevin Corcoran, Gulf Shores; Doug Warren, Ono Island; Christina McInnis, Orange Beach; Roger Few, Spanish Fort; Michael Robson, Spanish Fort; Sharee Broussard, Spanish Fort; Vickie Bailey, Fairhope; Tommy Faust Jr., Fairhope; Kathy Sternenberg, Fairhope; Kelly McGriff, Montrose; Cody Phillips, Fairhope; Jennifer Graham Jenkins, Daphne; Starke Irvine, Daphne; Jon Archer, Magnolia Springs; David Vosloh, Foley; Randall Caldwell, Foley; Jennifer Watkins, Foley; Jennifer Archuleta, Elberta; Jason Kozon, Elberta; and Susan Hamby, Elberta.
Baldwin County Education Coalition Executive Director Terry Burkle said she is confident the task force is comprised of people who are eager to serve. Burkle said the task force will serve an advisory role to the board, which will use the recommendations in policy making in the future.
The task force was approved unanimously, but some board members expressed concerns about its size and composition. Board member David Tarwater was concerned that 27 members may be too many, while Angie Swiger objected to at least one citizen she said was connected to political groups.
“I feel very confident they will approach this objectively, with no personal agendas,” Burkle said. “I think they have the best interests of our children in mind.”
The task force had been placed on the board’s agenda at its June 18 regular meeting, but it had just 11 names at the time.