MERCED — Ida Johnson is the new president of the Merced Union High School District board of trustees. As the board's leader in 2013, she said several key tasks face trustees.
At the board's last meeting, Johnson was elected president and Sam Spangler was named vice president. New trustee Dora Crane becomes the board's clerk.
Johnson, elected to the board in 2005, was president in 2009 and said there is responsibility attached to the largely ceremonial role.
Closing the student achievement gap is Johnson's prime goal. She said she will set the direction and keep the board on task in its ongoing duty of self-evaluation.
"It's up to the board president to make sure these things happen," Johnson said. "I believe all children can learn. The achievement gap is closing but it's not where we want it to be."
The high school district with campuses in Merced, Atwater and Livingston is doing better financially than most educational systems and Johnson hopes this fiscal conservatism and solid footing continues.
Site visits to schools
Johnson, employed by the Merced County Office of Education, teaches computer applications at Valley Community School in Atwater and similar courses at Delhi High School.
Crane, a physical education teacher at Tenaya Middle School and president of the Merced City Teachers Association, thought that things went well at her first board meeting earlier this month.
She said that in the last few weeks she was able to attend the Superintendent's Awards presentation and made site visits to Atwater High School, Sequoia and Yosemite high schools.
Crane said she is very impressed with the district's maintenance of its facilities and grounds.
"It (board service) will be hard work but I am up to the challenge," Crane said. "We will continue to put students first."
Reporter Doane Yawger can be reached at (209) 385-2407 or email@example.com.