Wants 'the best school experience' for students
TROY - Bill Brasington of Troy was concerned that no one ran in the last election for a vacant seat on the Troy Area School Board.
So, he decided to apply for the vacancy himself.
This week, the school board appointed him to the Region I seat, which includes Troy
Borough, Alba Borough, Armenia Township, and Troy Township. The seat was held formerly by Larry Grace, who didn't seek re-election.
When asked for comment by The Daily Review, Brasington said his first concern is "trying to work toward having the best school experience we can for the kids and to make sure the school is serving the needs of the community."
He also wants to support the teachers in the school district.
"They have a tough job," he said.
He said most teachers want to change the world one kid at a time, "and we need to help them do that."
Brasington has experience in sports, having served as a youth director for USA Track & Field for four years. He said it's the governing body for track and field and runs the Junior Olympics. During his term, he was responsible for the eastern half of Pennsylvania, the southern half of New Jersey, and the entire state of Delaware.
With such experience, Brasington said that he "may be able to add perspective" when it comes to athletics in the district. Technology is another area in which Brasington could possibly help. He has 25 years as a computer consultant.
"I don't come to the board with any kind of agenda," he commented. "All the members of the board have areas of expertise that are valuable to the overall board."
At this week's meeting, school board president Todd Curren asked Brasington why he was interested in serving on the board.
A 1976 graduate of Troy High School, Brasington attended Mansfield University, where he graduated in 1981 with a B.S. degree in business administration, with a minor in computer science.
Because he could not find a job in the computer field in this area when he graduated, Brasington moved to the Philadelphia area in 1981 and raised two daughters, with his wife, Joie. He added that he was very interested in his children's education.
Brasington said he felt that the education he received in Troy gave him a good foundation for life.
When he attended college in Mansfield, Brasington said he could see that, by comparison with students from other areas, that the Troy schools had given him a good quality of education.
Brasington, who moved back to Troy in 2009, said he believes the school district is "an investment in our children."
"They are our future," he said.
He said everyone should be interested in what happens with children in the schools.
Brasington said he was happy that people attended the meetings last year over the football program, noting that they showed an interest in its future.
Brasington said he realizes that school directors don't get paid money and they don't get a lot of pats on the back, and as long as things are going well, people don't say anything.
He told the board that he was concerned that no one ran in the last election for the vacant board seat.
Brasington said the combination of his interest in a quality education in Troy and the fact that no one sought the school board seat prompted him to apply for the seat.
Curren asked him about the role of a school board member.
Brasington said the number one goal of the school system is education.
He didn't think a school board member should be involved directly in what a teacher does, but rather should support the teachers.
Brasington said the teachers have to do the teaching, the students have to do the learning, and someone - school board members - have to do the overall planning.
"I see that as the role of the school board," he said.
Brasington acknowledged the importance of budgetary concerns, and he thought a certain amount of creativity had to be used in complying with the many mandates that come down from the government.
Brasington was concerned about the emphasis on test scores.
He said test scores are important, but a balanced approach is needed in education.
He recalled one of his own teacher's comments. Brasington said his kindergarten teacher, Ms. Young, said that every student should make a good friend sometime during the year, so that when they go on to the next level, they have someone to rely on.
And those teaching history in the district may also have a friend in Brasington.
A history buff, he has been highly involved in the Troy Historical Society and the Bradford County Heritage Association Farm Museum in Troy.
Eric Hrin can be reached at (570) 297-5251; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.