Besides being the mother of four, Jessica LaFleur has some experience with schools and their boards.
Now, she’s the newest member of the Elk Point-Jefferson School Board and will take her seat at the July meeting.
LaFleur served on the board of a private school in Cedar Rapids, IA. She learned to identify the most important aspects of a school board – benchmarks and budgets. Those are the challenges facing most school boards these days.
“Balancing the financial responsibility with the needs of the children,” is how LaFleur describes the challenges. “With any system, any program, there’s always opportunity to improve. We don’t want to stay static – we always have to continue to look for what can make us better.”
LaFleur just ended a two-year stint as secretary for the EPJ Parent Teacher Organization and was looking for another way to serve the district.
“It was not something that was on my radar, to be honest,” she said. “Some of the teachers mentioned to me that I would be someone good to be on the board because I am proactive with my children’s education and we have diverse needs in my family for education.”
That family includes 12-year-old quadruplets – Seth, Lily, Logan and Carter, all going into 7th grade, and her husband, Kevin Malm, who manages Slumberland in Yankton.
Kevin’s being named manager at the Yankton store prompted their move from Iowa four years ago. LaFleur grew up in Jefferson, but her family moved away when she was 13. Part of their move to Elk Point was prompted by being closer to her grandfather, Ray LaFleur. Her first cousin, Sabrina Sayler, is currently on the EPJ board. But the school itself played a big part, too.
See full story in this week’s Leader-Courier.