Photos courtesy of the applicants.
Lee Ogle Tosney
The three 2017 applicants for a spot on the Hoover Board of Education are, from left, Shekinah Lee, Susan Ogle and Amy Tosney.
The Hoover City Council's Education Committee on Monday plans to interview the three applicants for the Hoover school board this year.
The interviews will begin at 3:30 p.m. at the Hoover Municipal Center at 100 Municipal Lane and are open to the public. The five council members on the committee plan to interview Shekinah Lee at 3:30 p.m., Susan Ogle at at 4 p.m. and Amy Tosney at 4:30 p.m.
The council plans to pick someone on April 17 to replace Stephen Presley, whose five-year term on the board ends May 31.
Here is a bit more about each of the applicants, based on information from their applications:
Neighborhood: Willow Lake
Occupation: Lead key holder at Plato’s Closet used clothing store; former manager there
Education: Attending Miles College in pursuit of bachelor’s degree in secondary education
Years lived in Hoover: 9
Hoover school ties: Graduated Hoover High School in 2010 with advanced academic diploma
Community involvement: founded nonprofit group called Planning For Purpose that focuses on getting students goal-oriented so that hurdles in life are just speed bumps and not stopping points; youth leader for ages 10-13 and head choreographer for dance ministry at New Life Interfaith Ministries; dance coach at Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School
Reasons for applying: Ensuring that current students have same wonderful experience she did; being a voice for millennial students entering a fast-paced world; helping prepare students for global success in an era of technology advancement and constant changes in education reform in the federal government
Critical issues: Ensuring that every student is able to compete in every subject on a global level; having certified, more-than-capable professionals in every classroom; making sure school environments are conducive to peak learning.
Neighborhood: Altadena Woods
Occupation: Worked 20 years as sixth-grade science teacher at Simmons Middle School; spent more than two years as middle school science specialist for the Alabama Math Science Technology Initiative before retiring in December 2016; serving as consultant for AMSTI until May 31; director of Homewood Day School from 1992 to 1994; taught 10 years at elementary and junior high schools in Lee County, Atlanta, Phoenix City and Pell City
Education: Bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from Auburn University
Years lived in Hoover: 26
Hoover school ties: Worked 20 years as sixth-grade science teacher at Simmons Middle School; two sons attended Rocky Ridge Elementary, Berry Middle and Spain Park High; was team leader, department head, trainer and sponsor for several clubs at Simmons; earned 2010 Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Teaching and Simmons Middle School 1999 Outstanding Teacher Award
Community involvement: Has served on board of directors for Homewood Day School since 2000; served in numerous capacities at Homewood Church of Christ, including education committee since 2005, nursery assistant director, preschool, children’s Sunday School and night classes, ladies classes, Connect Group secretary and First Impressions ministry
Reasons for applying: Said she is vested and passionate about Hoover City Schools; wants to bring an educator’s perspective to the board; wants to make sure schools continue to compete for best teachers, technology and cutting-edge instruction while keeping classroom sizes small and balanced racially and academically
Critical issues: Rezoning is the most critical issue; if current plan is approved, multiple schools will become imbalanced with regard to race and family income and there will be large learning gaps among students; several schools will have more students learning English as second language who need extra help; other issues include need for third high school and cooperation between school board and City Council to address the impact of continued growth
Neighborhood: Lake Crest
Occupation: Vice president and office manager at Magic City Door since January 2008; formerly taught preschool at Hunter Street Baptist Church Weekday Program for three years, kindergarten at Hilldale for a year and middle and high school at Erwin High School in Jefferson County for four years; also worked as interim librarian at Brookwood Forest Elementary in Mountain Brook
Education: Bachelor’s degree in education from Jacksonville State University
Years lived in Hoover: 9
Hoover school ties: Has 11-year-old at Gwin Elementary and 16-year-old at Hoover High; fundraising chairwoman for Hoover High Choir Booster Club and Paradigm Show Choir; registration volunteer at Hoover High for three years
Community involvement: Involved in many ministry and mission projects at Hunter Street Baptist Church, including small group leader, assistant director of fifth- and sixth-grade choir, and former assistant director of seventh-and eighth-grade choir
Reason for applying: Said she is passionate about making sure Hoover continues to provide superior education opportunities for its children
Critical issues: Addressing space needs as the city and school system continue growing; zoning
A fourth candidate, Calvin Briggs, applied for this year's school board appointment but later withdrew.