By Ralph Kowalski
The New Citizens Press
LANSING, MI – In January of 2006, Mrs. Jacqueline D. Warr (Jackie), President of the Lansing School Board will retire from her position. She is planning on spending more time with her family and enjoying life.
Mrs. Warr said that she consented to taking the position on the Lansing School Board because she wanted to defend and advocate for public education, especially Lansing public school for the students and their parents.
Mrs. Warr said, “Every parent needs to be involved with their children’s education. We (the Lansing School Board) cannot decide what that involvement is. Parents should and are welcome to go into schools and observe the teachers. Attending parent teacher conferences and going to P.T.A. is not enough in this day and age.”
She has been serving the last two years as the President of the board and served two years as the Vice President and two years as the Secretary.
Mrs. Warr said with a smile that her most memorable experience on the board was being involved in selecting Dr. E. Sharon Banks as the Superintendent of the Lansing School District.
Mrs. Warr said, “I wanted somebody who is an innovator. Academics is fine but Lansing needed someone who is also an innovator and helped a community of schools to raise their consciousness.”
In November of 1999, when Mrs. Warr ran for office her goals were to improve academic achievement, align curriculum and staff development to the state and national standards. She also wanted to evaluate and expand partnerships with businesses, hospitals and the school-to-work programs.
Some of her other accomplishments were serving on the Middle School Task Force and serving as the Chairperson of the Committee on Parent Involvement. The Middle School Task Force was established to focus on improving the academics and performance of middle school students.
Mrs. Warr said that middle school years are the most important because children change so rapidly.
“You have to believe in children. You need to believe that children will succeed and they will. The school board is an advocate for children. Most children just need guidance because they sometimes make silly mistakes based on immaturity. If you worked with them they may not do it again. They need to be given a chance to succeed,” lamented Mrs. Warr.
While growing up, Mrs. Warr was surrounded by hard working parents and talented siblings. Her father was a real estate broker and that is how he raised the family. However, Mrs. Warr stated that her mother, was a good steward over the money.
In November of 2005, there will be three seats open: Hugh Barrington Clarke , Jr., Jack Davis and Mrs. Warr’s.