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Going to the polls and having your voice be heard is one of the most important and unalienable rights you have as a United States citizen. We have the privilege of having this right, so why not use it? As November 5 draws near, Jan Falk wants you to know that for her, running for School Board is not a right, but a privilege.
Falk raised her family in the Lebanon School District and soon found herself frequently volunteering at the Lebanon Middle School. Retiring after 33 years of VA service, she found time to help with the garden on school grounds, the special needs class, and ESL tutoring.
Due to her involvement in the middle school, an active Lebanon High School parent and friend encouraged her to seek out a position on the School Board. She believed Jan had the voice and heart to represent our children and dedicated staff with knowledge of the current school pulse.
Recently honored by the Lebanon School District and the Lebanon Education Association as a “Friend of Education” for the 2019-2020 school year, Jan finds herself becoming more and more involved in the community.
Falk believes Lebanon is vastly growing in diversity. There are more opportunities than ever to learn about other cultures. The city itself offers affordable living and is thriving in exploratory sites such as South Hills, Stovers Dam, Rails to Trail, and Union Canal. She trusts her ever-growing and evolving city of Lebanon has much more to offer than what eyes can see.
Lebanon is known for its reputation as a city, but Falk likes its small-town feel. She is excited about the energy and growth that is going into a large downtown community. Falk has attended events such as Salsa the Vote, Lebanon Multicultural Festival, Lebanon County Democratic Party Annual Fall Dinner, HACC Lebanon’s Hispanic Heritage Celebration and the Domestic Violence Intervention (DVI) of Lebanon dinner. This involvement has enhanced her awareness in what needs to change in the Lebanon School District and what issues are obvious.
Falk’s first initiative is to make herself more aware of the paths that have been taken prior to herself and to find alternative methods in creating a solution to staff retention. Falk believes class and room size have a huge impact on a child’s learning, as well as the mental health of the staff at hand. This past year, it was estimated that LMS had the largest incoming sixth grade class, reaching a staggering 400 students. With so many children, no room for them, and a declining teacher retention rate, Falk says we need to take action. If Lebanon wants to elevate students’ academic outcomes, she thinks the first step is optimizing their learning environment. That involves keeping up with current technology and catering to the needs of each student.
Students’ needs can be reflected in the cafeteria as well. Jan advocates for clean and healthy eating at school and at home. Encouraging positive physical engagement and addressing accessibility for all capabilities educationally, physically and emotionally through interactive programs is of the utmost importance. This also includes diversifying the meals.
Falk’s biggest proponent is the fact that Lebanon is such a melting pot of people, yet it does not cater to a multicultural climate. She hopes to help break barriers and cultural divides by exemplifying the need for translators, an advanced ESL tutor program, and reaching out to parents who feel they don’t have a voice due to language barriers.
Falk is determined to create an ideal environment for our children. A proud mother and advocate for the youth, Falk wants to take learning to the next level. Join her in making that dream a reality by voting Jan Falk for Lebanon School Board.