A realtor since 1996 with a vested interest in the Sioux Falls School system, Roger Russell wants to be a part of the Sioux Falls School Board. 

Russell has three children with one currently attending Lincoln High School, one recent graduate and a little one who will soon enter Kindergarten.

As Russell was gathering signatures to enter the race, people told him what they want from the School Board.  “The biggest thing that I’ve heard when (listening) to people is just to have an ear.  A lot of people feel like their comments or concerns are not being addressed.”

One of those areas Russell believes that lacked sufficient discussion was the Mark Twain Elementary School name change to Susan B. Anthony.  “I think there has to be a lot more public input.  If the citizens want to speak they need to speak and be at the School Board meetings.  It has to and should be run by the citizens.”

Common Core is one of the issues that Russell hears from the constituency.  He runs into widespread disdain for the standards.  “Most people overwhelmingly do not like it.  It’s going down the road of a nationalized education system.  The plan to get our kids educated is great.  It’s just how it’s being incorporated.”

If elected, Russell would not mount a charge to eradicate Common Core from the schools.  “We have to work with what we have.  I think it was a good decision for the State Legislature to forgo any more implementation for the Science curriculum.”  As of now the standards are in place for Math and English in South Dakota.

Russell faces incumbent Doug Morrison for the lone position open in this election.  To listen to the entire interview in three separate segments, click on the appropriate links below.

Segment 1: An introduction to Roger Russell.

Segment 2:  Russell encourages citizens to attend Board meetings to get their voices heard.

Segment 3:  Common Core is a hot topic and his plea for your vote for Sioux Falls School Board.