Robert Reining: 2023 candidate for Algonquin-based Community Unit District 300 School Board
Town: Lake in the Hills
Age on Election Day: 51
Occupation: Auto mechanic
Employer: No answer given
Previous offices held: None
Q: Why are you running for this office, whether for reelection or election the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you?
A: This is my first time running for CUSD 300 board of education. The main issue is our failing district Report Card issued by the Illinois State Board of Education. Only 27.1% or District 300 students can read at grade level and only 25.7% of District 300 students can do math at grade level.
Q: What is the role of the school board in setting and monitoring curriculum?
A: The role of the board is to approve textbooks, curriculum and educational services. Responsible for evaluating the educational programs and presenting the district report card to the community.
Q: Are there curriculum issues within the district that you feel need particular attention from the board?
A: Yes. the low ISBE District Report Card is a reflection that there are numerous curriculum issues that need attention.
Q: How do you view your role in confronting policy or curriculum controversies: provide leadership even if unpopular, give a voice to constituents -- even ones with whom you disagree, or defer to state authorities?
A: This is where the board needs the most improvement. There is no balance on this current board. Almost every vote is unanimous and very little debate. I think it is important to have an open dialogue with parents and community members. Everyone has something to bring to the table even if we do not agree.
Q: Concerns are growing regarding a new resurgence of the pandemic. If another massive outbreak of infectious disease occurs, what have we learned from the COVID-19 pandemic that will guide your decision making?
A: We have learned excluding children from in person learning does more harm than good. We also have learned that parents know what is best for their children and listening to them is critical.
Q: Describe your experience working in a group setting to determine policy. What is your style in such a setting to reach agreement and manage school district policy? Explain how you think that will be effective in producing effective actions and decisions of your school board.
A: Teamwork, honesty and transparency are essential to reaching any agreement. I think with these 3 things it will build trust within the board, schools and community.
Q: What makes you the best candidate for the job?
A: I am the best candidate because I as a parent and community member have been involved in the district since my kids started school. I was a classroom volunteer, PTO assistant whenever needed and helped at every field day while my kids were in elementary school. I have also been an active member at board meetings and in the community.
Q: What's one good idea you have to better your district that no one is talking about yet?
A: Return the focus to academics and ensure the district's resources are used for direct student instruction, not administrative overhead.