2018 SHPA School Board Voting Guide Now AvailableLeslie Rimstad
SEVEN HILLS PREPARATORY ACADEMY VOTING GUIDE
NOMINATING AND ELECTIONS COMMITTEE
This Voting Guide is designed to help everyone in the Seven Hills Preparatory Academy
community become acquainted with the candidates for election to the school’s Board of
Directors. School Board elections are important for our school, as parents and staff consider the
strategic needs of the school. As such, please keep in mind the following background as you
think about your choices.
The Overall Function of the Board
Board members have both a legal duty and an ethical obligation to ensure that Seven Hills
Preparatory Academy carries out its mission, vision and goals. As stated in our charter approved
by the State of Minnesota, our mission is to engage students in a rigorous Classical education,
designed to prepare each one for strong citizenship and lifelong learning. The board’s job is to
map out the strategies that will carry Seven Hills Preparatory Academy into its successful future.
Therefore, as part of the Board of Directors, individual board members should think of
themselves as stewards of the school – responsible for the long-term viability of Seven Hills
Preparatory Academy. Whether a parent, teacher, or community member, directors can advocate
on behalf of a constituency, but only make decisions that serve the good of the organization as a
An electronic Voting Guide will be sent home to all families and staff of Seven Hills Preparatory
Academy. This Voting Guide will give you information on all the candidates to assist you in
making your voting decisions. Paper copies are available in LEA offices.
Needs of the Board
In order to make sure the board has all the skills needed to chart Seven Hills Preparatory
Academy’s strategic future, we ask you to consider candidates who would fulfill several existing
needs on the board.
● Commitment to Seven Hills Preparatory Academy’s education model
● Ability to plan strategically for the future
● Understanding of public affairs and communications
● Awareness of development, fundraising techniques, and sources of funding.
The Board of Directors has 3 open positions. 2 at-large vacancies and 1 teacher vacancy.
This year, the voting process for the Board of Directors will be online. An individual link for
voting will be sent by email to the SHPA community on Wednesday, May 2nd. Voting will take place using a secure online process which will permit each community member to vote through their email address. Votes can be cast on an electronic device of the user’s choice. This process also accommodates households where there are two adults casting individual votes. This method will limit each user to a one time vote opportunity per email link
while still ensuring anonymity in the voting process. Voting will open on May 3rd from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. For voters who may not have access to an electronic device, the front office of each campus will have devices available for
voting on the day of May 3rd. The results of the board election will be announced at the May 3rd
school board meeting.
SEVEN HILLS PREPARATORY ACADEMY
SCHOOL BOARD ELECTION BALLOT
___ Renson Anjere (parent)
___ Kate Docken (teacher)
___ Jeffrey Miller (parent)
**Vote for up to 3 candidates
SEVEN HILLS PREPARATORY ACADEMY
CANDIDATE PROFILE April, 2018
CANDIDATE NAME: Renson Anjere
MY CONNECTION TO SHPA: I have two daughters that attend SHPA: Hannah Anjere in 2nd grade and
Lillian Anjere in Kindergarten.
WHY I WANT TO SERVE ON THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS: I would like to serve and support the board in
shaping the education of current and future students by being an active participant in many aspects of
decision making. I believe that I can be instrumental in making a difference in the overall quality of
education that the school provides. SPHA already provides quality education to our children and I want
to make sure the standards are either maintained or improved upon. By serving on the board, I can be a
voice of different segments of our community by making sure that are properly represented. I interact
with numerous parents and often hear some express their concerns, but I have not acted beyond the
informal discussions. If I am elected to be on the board, it will give me an opportunity to know and listen
to more parents and teachers and advocate for their concerns. I will also have the insight to explain
issues that our constituents may not have in-depth understanding.
EXPERIENCE THAT I WOULD BRING TO THE BOARD: I have served on a non-profit board, run a business
and have a vast network of contacts in the Twin Cities. I would like to share my time, personal and
professional experience that I believe to be unique and could add value to the board.
AREAS OF EXPERTISE I COULD BRING TO THE BOARD:
I am an Insurance professional with business management background and a business owner with sales
and marketing experience.
THE CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES I SEE AHEAD AND HOW I PROPOSE HANDLING THESE:
Adequate facilities to accommodate grades k-8 that includes outdoor playground for students at one
location. I know this is a challenge and we are limited with options for facilities but would like to explore
further as the school grows. School transportation with regards to bus companies. At the beginning of the school year, I have heard complaints from parents that communication is poor. Also, drop off times by the bus companies for residents outside Bloomington could be improved. My family opted out of the school bus because the
children were dropped off at 5pm and sometimes later. We can work with the vendor to address these
concerns if the problem persists. The School has a great reputation and academic standards are rated favorably. I would like to make sure that these standards are maintained if not improved. If I serve on the board, I am sure there will many challenges to address and opportunities to capitalize on. Before I can start offering solutions or bring up challenges that may or may not exist, I would like to learn about how the school is run and how the board functions. Once I have gained understanding of why things function the way the way they do, only then can I offer constructive feedback or offer suggestions for improvement.
CANDIDATE NAME: Kate Docken
MY CONNECTION TO SHPA: I currently work as the Special Education Director at Seven Hills Preparatory Academy. I began at Seven Hills as a Special Education Teacher during the 2008-2009 school year where I worked with students and staff from both Seven Hills Classical Academy and Beacon Preparatory School. I have had the opportunity to be a part of the school as it grew from about 350 kids in grades K-5 and 6 to around 900 students in K-8 spread across two campuses. During this time, we moved two times while the church
was remodeling and building out the space that the Bloomington Campus currently uses. We then moved the middle school to the Richfield Campus and replicated the K-2 program. I have seen the school develop, grow, and change over the past ten years and I am excited to see and be a part of what is to come.
WHY I WANT TO SERVE ON THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS:
I have served on the board for the past three years and look forward to serving another term where I can help assist in the growth of the school. I have served on the board while we merged, moved, and replicated, and I look forward to continuing to support the school while we finish the replication and expansion. I would like to be a part of the planning and preparation that will go into completing the replication and continuing student success throughout both schools. I am passionate about our school, teachers, families, and students and helping to continue to provide strong communication as we continue to grow.
EXPERIENCE THAT I WOULD BRING TO THE BOARD: I have been a School Board member for the past three years and have sat on the Finance Committee and Facilities Committee. This year, I have also been the Chair of the Facilities Committee. During this time, we have moved the middle school, replicated the elementary program, and planned for and built the gym expansion at the Richfield Campus. I have also assisted in creating the school’s Strategic Plan along with one year and three year goals. I currently take on several roles at Seven Hills and assist in the day to day workings of the school. I am able to bring my knowledge of how the school works along with what the school needs to the Board.
AREAS OF EXPERTISE I COULD BRING TO THE BOARD:
I bring expertise in the area of Special Education compliance, laws, and fiscal responsibilities. I also have expertise in planning and preparing for the upcoming needs in the area of scheduling, staffing, and facilities. I have gained expertise in the area of replicating and expansion as we have worked to build our
new gymnasium and replicate our K-5 program.
I have a strong understanding of our students, families, and staff and can continue to provide insight in how to meet the needs of all of our stakeholders. I have also assisted in fundraising for the school and have a knowledge of what the schools continue to need to be successful.
THE CHALLENGES I SEE AHEAD AND HOW I PROPOSE HANDLING THOSE CHALLENGES:
I believe we will see challenges as we continue to grow with staffing, space, and maintaining the current staff and student culture. I propose handling these challenges by collaborating with other board members and ensuring continued communication with staff, families, and the community.
I also see us having difficulty meeting the needs of our population as our enrollment grows at the Richfield Campus. I propose we continue to focus on diversity and inclusion to meet the needs of these students and families along with working to diversify the staff to better represent our students. I see challenges in growing our fund balance while we continue the replication and growth of the school. I propose we continue to be fiscally responsible and follow our budget in order to ensure we grow our fund balance towards our goal of 25%.
There will be challenges that arise but as a Board we can work together to solve or minimize these
CANDIDATE NAME: Jeffrey Miller
MY CONNECTION TO SHPA: Father of 2 current students. Next year: 3 students: Kindergarten, 2nd
Grade, & 5th Grade.
WHY I WANT TO SERVE ON THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS: SHPA has established itself as a school of
excellence. I want to continue that tradition while helping us grow for the years ahead, and creating a
legacy for our children and our community.
As a lifelong member of this community, with 4 young children, 3 at SHPA in the Fall, and 1 more
student entering Kindergarten in 2 years, I am dedicated to seeing SHPA thrive.
EXPERIENCE THAT I WOULD BRING TO THE BOARD: Currently chairman of a national trade organization
since 2016. Also a Richfield business owner since 2009, as well as a graduate of the Bloomington School
District. I’ve also travelled extensively around the world, and understand cross-cultural communications and
needs for diversity.
AREAS OF EXPERTISE I COULD BRING TO THE BOARD: Global Outlook Organizational Development
Community, Government and Business Relations Commitment to Classical Education
THE CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES I SEE AHEAD AND HOW I PROPOSE HANDLING THESE: As SHPA
continues to grow, adding new grades, new courses, new teachers, new students, and eventually the
possibility of new campuses, our community and government stakeholders, as well as business relations
will become increasingly more integral to our success. Not only planning, but developing key
connections in each of these areas ahead of our need for them will help ensure measured growth which
will allow us to protect our commitment to excellence for each individual child.