YORKTOWN, N.Y. - Lakeland Board of Education Vice President Carol Ann Dobson has worn many hats during her nine years as a school trustee and prior to that as a parent volunteer.
Dobson, 57, who has lived in the district for 29 years, said her involvement with the District Parents' Council, board's Management Policy, PTA, Site Based Teams and various districtwide committees has "given me a handle on the workings of the district, the expectations of the community and the challenges of navigating the state education department."
"I enjoy the various challenges. I like working on solutions," said Dobson, who is a medical biller. "I take pride in our success and I think it is important to give back and be part of a team that works to improve things rather than sitting on the sidelines criticizing."
As she vies for a fourth, three-year term on the board, Dobson said the biggest challenges facing the district are the economy and unfunded state mandates.
"Someone needs to look at the long-term impact of these requirements," she said. "School officials, teachers and the board of education are being left out of the conversation in Albany. I feel you need to include all parties to come up with a workable solution."
Dobson said Lakeland was preparing for the state mandated 2 percent tax levy cap well in advance by consolidating, reallocating and looking at ways to do more with less.
"Compared to most districts, we are fortunate to be in a good place financially. This was not by accident," she said. "Educationally, our students are doing well and a recent report shows they have been successful at achieving their college degrees. We continue to offer a variety of challenging programs and opportunities."