August 1999 / New Column in Peninsula Clarion

Question Mark
Ask the Superintendent: New Column in Peninsula Clarion
Superintendent's Column
Peninsula Clarion
D. Peterson

August 1999

Hi! I’m Donna Peterson, the new superintendent of the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District. One idea for improving communication between central office and parents, students, and community members is a monthly column on the Clarion education page. Rather than us sitting around the table deciding what we should write about, we’d like to try responding to your questions. Here’s the plan : submit your question to the Clarion through e-mail, fax, or mail; the Clarion will forward the questions to my office; I’ll review the questions and respond in the paper – kind of like the Ann Landers for the School District. The questions most likely chosen for a response will be those that have implications beyond a particular school. For example, a question like “How does the school district decide how much money each school gets?” is more likely to get a response than, “ What is the average gate receipt for Skyview High School football game?” Specific or immediate questions should be directed to your school.

Just so you know, the management team at central office consists of myself as CEO of the organization and three Assistant Superintendents – Todd Syverson in Human Resources, Patrick Hickey for Operations and Business Management, and Ed McLain for Instruction. In each of these departments, we have Directors and/or support personnel that assist in getting the job done. In these times of changing regulations and increased accountability, central office folks are the ones who interpret, organize, coordinate, and communicate between outside groups/requirements (State, National, local, etc.) and the schools. The work we do allows the school administrator to concentrate on the business of running the school. Central Office administrative costs for the Kenai Peninsula School District are the lowest in the State of Alaska – less than 4% of the overall budget. So, we’re a small but busy group.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to your questions. Special thanks to the Clarion for this opportunity.