Dear friends and neighbors,

It has been a thrill and a great privilege to run for the Provo School Board.

I chose to do so not to fulfill some life ambition, but primarily because members of our community from various walks of life approached me and earnestly encouraged me to do so. One of the main things they told me was that I have a background and approach needed now in this important position. I would like to share with you some of the background and approach I believe they were referencing, so that you can be aware of the option available to you in this election.

I was born and raised here in Provo, as one of seven children raised by a single mother. Money was always tight, and I became a fiscal conservative at a young age (something demonstrated in my grassroots campaign run entirely by unpaid volunteers). I attended Provo public schools, graduating with honors from Provo High. An academic scholarship took me to BYU where I majored in elementary education. My grandparents, Martha and Glen Kenner, influenced my decision to major in education. I fondly remember visiting the kindergarten class my grandmother taught at Maeser Elementary and watching my grandfather teach at Provo High.

Partly because of my positive experience with Provo public schools, I have dedicated myself to our schools for roughly the last 16 years of my adult life, serving in numerous capacities, including in the classroom, in the PTA, and as a member of two Community Councils (Rock Canyon Elementary for three years; Timpview for four), determining how land-trust funds should be spent to benefit our schools.

Through serving, I believe I have gained a reputation for proposing and implementing common-sense solutions to problems, while maintaining good relationships with stakeholders, such as teachers, administrators, parents, and students. Allow me to cite just two examples.

Dean Nielsen and I spearheaded efforts create the walkway that now exists in the fence between Rock Canyon Elementary and the neighboring church parking lot, easing congestion and enhancing student safety and convenience for parents. The project took over many hours and, more importantly, careful coaxing of the authorities involved.

At Timpview, I became aware that the cheapest ACT preparation course in our area was hundreds of dollars per student. Through careful study, planning, and persuasion of the powers that be, a friend and I developed and implemented a high-quality ACT course for only $50 and scholarships are available for those who can’t afford that. Of all my achievements, creating the low-cost ACT course is dear to my heart, because my main aim for our students is to foster college readiness.

Speaking of readiness, as preparation for running for this position, I have attended all school-board meetings and retreats for the last year or so. I believe I am ready to hit the ground running.

In closing, let me say a kind word about my opponent. I appreciate everyone who serves our public schools, including our current school-board member, Carolyn Wright. I believe there have been some real positives from her service. Carolyn is, however, asking to serve us for 12 years (she has served eight at this point), and I believe a fresh approach would be a welcome change at this time.

For this reason, I respectfully ask for your vote on Tuesday November 2, 2010.

Thank you for your interest and dedication to our schools.

Michelle Kaufusi

Provo School Board District 2

Michelle Kaufusi for Provo School Board District 2 • 3018 Comanche Ln• Provo, UT 84604 •