Marshfield School Board Candidates: Feddick-Goodwin looks for spot on board
By Mike Warren
Second in a four-part series on this spring’s school board candidates
MARSHFIELD – Alanna Feddick-Goodwin moved to Marshfield in 1994. She is married, has stepchildren, and her 13-year-old son attends Marshfield Middle School.
Feddick-Goodwin told the audience at a Feb. 10 candidates’ forum at Marshfield High School that she is invested in and has a stake in “making sure that our school district not only properly and effectively educates our children, but also provides a safe environment, and prepares our students to be the next leaders.”
Feddick served on the Marshfield Common Council for 13 years, and says she understands how boards work.
“I believe that the responsibility of a school board is threefold: No. 1 – They need to set the budget and how the budget works. No. 2 – They need to set policy. And then that policy is carried out by the oversight that the board has over the superintendent. So, our job isn’t to say, ‘You students need to do this’ or ‘You students need to do that.’ Our job is to make sure that policies are set, and then policies are carried forth. And I think that’s really important, so that the public knows what the school board’s job and role is.”
In response to a question regarding challenges, Alanna replied, “I think there’s a number of things. No. 1 – Except for Mr. Yakaites, anyone who gets the second position on the school board is going to be new. They are going to have to adapt to, not only how the school board works in its specific functions, but I certainly am a quick study. I certainly know how boards function. And I would be excited to take on that challenge.
“Secondly, not knowing everything or enough, I believe that it’s important, when setting policy, to talk to the stakeholders – the students, the administration, the teachers, the staff, parents. It requires learning about the problems and learning how we can help, and how we can best make a policy that has the greatest impact.”
The candidates also responded to a student’s question regarding the recent rash of fights at Marshfield High School, the apparent result of cyberbullying.
“This is really unconscionable, and something needs to happen,” Feddick said in response. “Students, it just seems they’re out of control.
“It seems like they’re unmanaged. Parents are unsure what to do. They can’t even come to the school and come into the school and talk to the principle. Teachers and staff are not trained to break up fights. They’re going to get sued. Why would they do that? They can’t go into bathrooms and break up these kids who are vaping and kids who are doing drugs.
“We need to have liaison officers in the schools. We need to have drug dogs going through and sweeping the schools. Something needs to happen right away.”
Another student asked the candidates a question having to do with mental health, and how they would expand programs to help students better cope with academic and social pressure.
“I fully agree there is a mental health crisis, and I think it’s only getting worse,” said Feddick-Goodwin. “I don’t know what the budget is for additional staff. I think there needs to be more mental health counseling. And there needs to be more education for students about resources that are available. There certainly needs to be more involvement, and there certainly needs to be more counselors. There’s far too long a waiting list.”
Feddick-Goodwin also called for more and better communication within the district.
“My goal in running for school board is to make students successful. I want to hear from students. You know that old comment box that we used to have? Why not an electronic comment box? There’s technology now. And I am willing to find out whatever technology opportunity works best for students.
“I want them to comment. And I want those comments to be read at the school board. I want that to be an integral part; because, not only does the school board make decisions that impact the students, but then that impact has ripples of effect, and that needs to be taken seriously and taken to make you guys effective and successful leaders in our communities.”
In closing, Alanna said, “We need to return to fundamentals of educating. We need to have safe schools. We need to empower parents. We need to provide transparency. We need to ensure that our students are successful. We need to instruct our students, not just what to think, but how to think. We need to prepare our students to be ready for college, technical school and to enter the workforce. We need to provide opportunities for our students to get involved in the workforce, and we have those opportunities in our community.
“All of our students should be protected, encouraged and engaged in education and to learn in the way that each student learns best. We need to support teachers and staff by giving them the resources they need to excel. I believe that I could do that on the school board.”
Feddick-Goodwin is one of four candidates seeking two positions on the Marshfield Board of Education in the spring election on April 5. To see the Feb. 10 candidates’ forum in its entirety, find the MFLD-TV 989 page on YouTube.
Following segments will feature remaining contenders: Iddi Adam and Cathy J. Gorst. The Dale Yakaites segment is available here: https://hubcitytimes.wpengine.com/2022/02/25/marshfield-school-board-candidates-yakaites-seeks-reelection-to-school-board/