In the District 5 race for Lee County School Board, it is apparent that challenger Tom Scott has done his homework.
We thank him for his preparedness and his desire to serve.
It is the incumbent, though, who wrote the lesson plan, and it is the depth and breadth of her knowledge that has earned Elinor Scricca another term.
Dr. Scricca, a career educator who has served as a teacher, principal, director of education and superintendent of schools, brings a broad range of expertise and experience to the Lee County School District's policy making board.
In her two terms to date, she has been instrumental in effecting a number of changes that have taken a school district in trouble to one that is progressing, progressing a little slower than many of us may like, but progressing nevertheless in ways that can be objectively measured.
In the last half dozen or so years, graduation rates have improved, dropout rates have declined and students are doing better academically when measured against their peers statewide.
Students also have more educational options and opportunities and that is due, in no small part to educational innovations Dr. Scricca brought to the table, including the implementation of the district's three "comprehensive high schools," which offer students specialty courses to better prepare them academically or in specific skill sets. Dr. Scricca first proffered the idea not as a school board member, but as a citizen volunteer on the Curriculum Advisory Council, helping then to bring the concept to fruition once elected.
Students, who are also required to take the core academic classes, can opt for career courses that will allow them to graduate industry certified in particular fields.
Dr. Scricca credits these schools and their "academies," along with specialized career courses scattered throughout the high school system such as the Microsoft certification program at Dunbar High, with keeping students engaged and so lowering dropout rates.
During her tenure, the district also has expanded its advanced academic programs to more schools.
This, too, is key.
We endorse Elinor Scricca for the District 5 school board seat. Lee County students have benefited from her contributions thus far and she has earned another term.
This is a countywide, non-partisan race, meaning all registered voters can cast a ballot regardless of party affiliation or where they live in Lee County.
Also running: Tom Scott