Meet the Candidates: School Board District Five

Published 3:00 am Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Editor’s Note: Candidates were sent a questionnaire via email.

 

  • SHERRY DEFRANCESCH – INCUMBENT

Sherry DeFrancesch

Date of Birth: 04/12/1970

Why did you choose to run for school board? I have served the school board for 12 years. In that time, we have weathered literal storms and a pandemic. I chose to run again this year to continue to provide a balanced view to our school district. My belief in peacefulness and open-mindedness informs my actions as a school board member. I listen to the issues at hand and make the decision that will assist the district in building a prepared work force and future leaders for our community.

What is our public school district’s No. 1 challenge? The number one challenge of our school district is recovering from learning gaps created by the pandemic and storms that have impacted our community. I believe that we can work with our administration to identify resources and remediation programming for our students in need.

What is our public school district’s No. 1 asset? The number one asset of our school district is obviously our student body, but beyond that the resiliency they demonstrate. The past 12 years have given difficult circumstances to endure for our students and staff. Despite it all they come back and work. This effort when allowed to get beyond crisis is something that can take our school district to a new level.

What would you like to see improved or upgraded with our public school district? I believe the area of improvement for our district is to work with our administration to ensure a safe environment for our school communities. Working with resources in our community and state to identify our weaknesses and vulnerabilities is of utmost importance. When we have a safe environment, learning is possible. This goes beyond the security measures most schools look to implement. We also need to look at programming that allows students to find inspiration to come to school and want to learn. Programs in the arts and humanities are examples of things that can enhance our current offerings and serve all students. When students are fulfilled, they gain confidence to learn in all areas of their lives.

What qualities would you like to see in a new superintendent? Our new superintendent needs to demonstrate the capacity and drive to bring our district back to pre-pandemic levels and beyond. They need to be focused, responsive, and maintain commitment to follow through for the betterment of our community. They need to be able to build a team with a common goal to do their best work every day. Our best candidate needs to be there for the service to and achievement of our students.

How do you plan to make a difference? I offer a thoughtful approach to all school board matters. My observational skills and ability to weigh the pros and cons of each situation allow me to make the best decision for our students and families. The best decision is not always the easiest one. Doing the right thing is always my focus even when it is hard. Our students deserve someone who is thinking of them first.

 

 

  • LATUNYA DYKES CREECY

LaTunya Dykes Creecy

Greetings my my is LaTunya Dykes Creecy I am a State Registered Social Worker running for School Board seat in District 5 #67.

I’ve been living in St John the Baptist since 2003. I’ve been attending  my local School Board mtgs since 2013. All three of my daughters participated in the public School System their entire school careers.  I have one who graduated in 2016 another 2022 and one future graduate of 2024.

Besides being a parent and advocating for my own children I’ve also advocated for several other students in the locate  public and private schools, along with their families while being employed as a FINS Officer in our local court system and working for a few local Mental Health Agencies here in the parish.  I have also had the privilege of counseling other students and their families in our neighboring parishes St. Charles and St. James. I have been employed as a Substitute  Teacher in every public school on the East Bank of St John and I have been employed as a Substitute Teacher in every public school on the East and West banks of St. Charles.  My children have been active in local Summer programs, 4-H, parish community sports and they also played on their School teams since they were 5 years of age. I try my hardest to attend as many community  meetings I feel will affect myself, my family and my property. My personal struggles with learning and  negative behavior as a child in school  have also played a huge factor of me wanting speak up for those who are not able or those who are disregarded.  I’m not a person running for prestige, benefits or politics.  I’m running because I know I can give District #5 the kind of positive  professional and passionate voice it’s never experienced. Although I am not a life long resident I’ve been doing my homework on the schools, its students, its staff, their educators, the communities along with their customs and traditions. I see many many  great skills talents and achievements that go unnoticed throughout our Public School system and I’m asking for your vote so I can bring these innovative ideas to the table and work along side other passionate school board members who would like to turn our School system around and lift the morale and motivation levels of any who are attending, employed or simply a guest at our public schools. I’ve been employed and a product of many successful systems outside this parish and outside this state. I’m ready to be the Change I’d like to see in society, so please give me a chance on November 8. Thank You.