Press Release #17 – Trustees recognized for Board Appreciation Month

12 Jan

PRESS RELEASE #17/Jan. 12, 20221

As part of School Board Recognition Month, Superintendent Dr. Glenn Maleyko took time at the January 11, 2021 school board meeting to thank trustees for their service to the community.

Dr. Maleyko noted that this is the sixth time he has offered comments as Superintendent for Board Appreciation Month.

“As I reflect on the past year going back to March 2020, Board Appreciation Month means so much more this year.  Living through this pandemic has taught us the importance of appreciating the people and relationships we have in our lives,” Dr. Maleyko said.  “Thank you for the great work you do.  I look forward to working with you in the next year.  I know that we have some challenges and difficulties ahead, but I also know that we will persevere and we will get through it together as a team.  I salute you all for the great work you do.”

Board of Education members develop policies and make tough decisions that help shape the district now and in the future.  They are responsible for the third largest school district in Michigan with an annual budget of $312 million, an enrollment of almost 21,000 students, and 2,700 employees working in 34 district buildings.

In addition, Dearborn School Board trustees also serve as trustees for Henry Ford College.  They are the only school board trustees in the state that also serve as trustees for a local college.  This dual responsibility means trustees spend twice the amount of time dedicated to serving the community.  They evaluate both the superintendent and the college president and must keep abreast of issues, laws and legislation impacting both grades preschool to 12th and the college.

“In a normal year, this Board of Education must make dozens of crucial decisions that direct the education in our schools.  Since last March that task has taken on a whole new direction, elevated to a whole new level.  Our board has been phenomenal in their approach to leading the district through the crisis,” Dr. Maleyko said.  

“As superintendent, I truly appreciate the support and leadership our board has provided during the tough times in the pandemic,” he said.

The board began calendar year 2021 with a brief organizational meeting to select new officers.  Those appointments include Trustee Jim Thorpe as president, Trustee Roxanne McDonald as vice president, Trustee Adel Mozip as secretary and Trustee Irene Watts as treasurer.  The board also recognized Trustee Hussein Berry for his service as school board president last year.  Monday’s meetings were held entirely online because of current COVID conditions.

Below is information about the Dearborn Public School trustees for 2021.

Trustee Irene Watts was one of three trustees who won election to full 6-year terms in November.  Her term expires in 2026.  This is her first time on the Board of Education.

Trustee Adel Mozip was initially appointed to the board in April 2019.  He also won election to a full six-year seat in November, and his term will expire at the end of 2026.

Trustee Mary Petlichkoff also won election in November and is scheduled to serve until the end of 2026.  She has served on the board for 10 years.  She was first elected in 2006 and served from 2007 to 2010.  She returned to the board after being elected again in November 2014.

Trustee Roxanne McDonald has served seven years on the board after being elected in November 2011.  She did not serve in 2017 and 2018, but was reelected in November 2018.  Her current term expires at the end of 2024.

Trustee James Thorpe has served four years on the board after first being elected in November 2016 to a partial term.  He was reelected in November 2018 to a full term, which expires at the end of 2024.

Trustee Pat D’Ambrosio was the fourth candidate elected in November 2020, winning a partial term on the board.  He took his seat with the board in December, and his term ends in 2022.

Trustee Hussein Berry has served on the board for nine years.  He initially served from 2010 to 2014 and was elected again in November 2016 to a term which lasts through 2022. 

The Dearborn Board of Education, and the hundreds like it across the state, preserve public education, a core of the United States democracy.  They ensure that decisions on school programming are made by people elected to represent the community’s values, culture and circumstances.  They are citizens whose decisions affect students and build the local community.

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