News Section: Local Government
Candidate Profile: County School Board District 4: Linda Schaich
Candidate: Linda Schaich
Party Affiliation: Non-partisan
Hometown: Lansing, Mich.
Occupation: Assistant to the CFO of the Boys and Girls Clubs Foundation
Education: A.A. in Accounting; federally-licensed IRS Enrolled Agent
Due to financial troubles the Manatee County School District faces and has yet to correct, Linda Schaich feels obligated to contend for School Board, District 4.
Schaich was educated in Danbury, Conn. and spent her career years in San Diego, Calif.
“The taxpayers need someone on the School Board who understands the complex financial matters which center around a budget of $600 million,” she said. “The district needs to spend smarter and redirect the limited funds available for education to benefit the students and teachers.”
During her time spent in California, Schaich served as the Community Foundation’s President and was Vice President of the Educational Foundation. She’s also been an educator for Mote Marine, traveling with its mobile unit to schools and community events. Schaich seeks to establish a partnership between the district and teachers in order to identify and assess education goals.
Along with her public sector and non-profit experience, Schaich brings considerable small business expertise. Over a 20-year period, she was owner/operator of five equipment rental centers, one party store, two John Deere Lawn and Garden Dealerships and one John Deere Golf and Turf dealership.
In the past few years, however, she has focused her energies on the school district, examining monetary statements, funds and board agenda items while participating on various district groups, including the Budget Committee, Land and Facilities Committee and Sales Tax Committee.
According to Schaich, “75 percent of sales tax monies have been obligated to pay debt,” and the district’s fund reserve has only $500,000 when it should contain $9 million. Additionally, test scores dropped from a rank of 25 in 2002 to 47 in 2011, and School District bond ratings have decreased, jeopardizing future borrowing.
Determined and skillful at auditing as an Enrolled Agent, Schaich believes she will be able to “get to the bottom of things” if elected.