Western Wayne News is contacting local candidates seeking election this fall in contested races to request they answer a questionnaire (all candidates for the same office receive the same questions). They were asked the following questions:

1. Please define the role of a school board member, from your perspective.

2. How do you feel your school district is responding to additional challenges presented by COVID-19?

3. Aside from COVID, what is THE most important issue facing your school system right now, and why? What can/will you do to make a difference?

4. Aside from COVID, what are the second and third most important issues you hope to address while on the board, and why?

5. Help voters understand what motivated you to run (again, if you’re an incumbent) for school board and why you are the best person for the job.


Julie R. (Meyer) Blaase

Age: 62


Work experience/former occupation if retired

Associate, Culberson Funeral Home

Medical Review Nurse, Culberson Ambulance Service



Graduate, Hagerstown Jr.-Sr. High School

Graduate, Ivy Tech Community College, Nursing

Indiana Law Enforcement Academy, Certifications, Corrections and Correctional 



Elected offices previously held, including school board, and years:

January 1, 2008 – December 31, 2016, Nettle Creek School Board of Trustees

    Jefferson Township Representative

    Committee Participation: Board Policy Review, New Castle Career Center,

          School Safety, Sick Bank, Transportation, Wellness Committee


Community involvement:

Board of Directors, Secretary, Jacksonburg Cemetery Association

      Jacksonburg, Indiana


Do you currently have children attending schools in this district? If so, how many and what grade(s) are they in? Or, if your children are grown and did attend this district, when did they graduate? 

Caleb Blaase, 2011 Graduate, Hagerstown Jr.-Sr. High School

2016 Graduate, Indiana University East

Instructor, Nettle Creek School Corporation, Special Education

Assistant Coach, Varsity Football Program

EMT-B, Culberson Ambulance Service


Abbie Blaase. 2015 Graduate, Hagerstown Jr.-Sr. High School with Technical

Honors 2019 Graduate, Indiana University East

      BSN-RN, Reid Outpatient Surgery and Endoscopy (ROSE)


Contact information that may be published (phone number, email, etc.)






1. The School Board’s role concerns the overall picture – setting direction, establishing an effective and efficient structure, providing support, ensuring accountability; but, more importantly, providing community leadership as advocates for students, the school district and public schools, while being fiscal stewards of taxpayers’ dollars. The day-to-day management of the school district is tasked to the Superintendent and his Administrative Team. The Board must have trust, and confidence, the Superintendent, and his Team, will strive to do what is in the best interest of not only the Corporation and students, but stakeholders. A board member should always bear in mind authority is in the board room only, and a member cannot make unilateral decision, or promises, on behalf of the Corporation.

2. As a Community ember, former Board Member on the Board of Trustees, and part of the medical workforce, I am confident, and extremely proud of, the effort and work put forth by the current Nettle Creek School Board, Dr. Kyle Barrentine, Superintendent; Corporation Administrators and Educators, Support Staff; Transportation Employees; Katie Bymaster, RN, Clinic Director; Braden Albert, IT Specialist; and, parents and students during the difficult situation created by the Covid-19 Pandemic. No one could have anticipated the events of 2020 since March 13. All parties have diligently worked, and communicated, assuring everyone is well-informed, and updated, on the ever-evolving changes mandated by the Federal, State and/or Local Government entities. I believe the Covid-19 response has been tremendous, including the distribution of meals to students in every Township Nettle Creek Schools serve; a 2020 Graduation Ceremony many thought would never occur, but came together and was held to the delight of many; resuming classes, either in-person or virtually; and, to the healthy and safe start of the Fall Sports season. Nettle Creek School’s preliminary enrollment for 2020-21 school year, prior to the official count day occurring in late September, was 1,115 – 1,115 students, and their parents, relying on Hagerstown Elementary School and Hagerstown Jr.-Sr. High School to keep all safe and healthy. Day-to-day school life appears different, but without the collaboration and constant communication of the aforementioned groups, the Covid-19 issue at Nettle Creek School Corporation may be quite different.

3. Being an educator is one of the most important jobs a person can hold. Without teachers, our students would not gain the crucial skills and knowledge they require to become successful adults. A 2020 study, conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics, indicates nearly one-fifth of teachers won’t last more than a year in their job due to high stress and low pay. The Study further indicates that almost half of educators do not make it to five years in their profession. Indiana ranks 23rd relating to teacher salary. Retaining not only high-quality personnel, both certified and non-certified , should be a priority. The Board, working as a unit with the Superintendent, and Corporation employees, should have a plan in place to address retention of employees.

The Corporation’s Food Services Department has partnered with Chartwell’s Food Services to develop, and delivery quality, nutritious meals to our students and staff. Over the past months, it appears it is becoming increasingly difficult to maintain a positive Food Services Account. Should this trend continue, I would actively work with the Superintendent, Board Members, Food Services Department and Chartwell Associates to revisit the current cafeteria situation, and work to develop a strategic plan to avoid financial issues, even if it meant researching other options.

4. I believe in quality education for current, and future, students. As demonstrated in previous Board service, I am willing, and able, to work with the Superintendent, Board colleagues, teachers, other Corporation employees and parents to achieve this goal. I am able to represent diverse groups in our Community, and ensure Community members have a voice in making their educational and administrative concerns known. I can act as a conduit for the concerns and interests of not only Corporation employees, but parents and other stakeholders. My eight years of previous experience on Nettle Creek’s School Board affords me the knowledge, and capability, to help create stronger ties between the School Board, staff, students and their parents, community members and stakeholders, by being open-minded, an active listener and always being transparent.

5. Nettle Creek School Corporation’s Mission is to provide an “Exemplary educational experience that maximizes each student’s highest potential”, and the Vision “The Corporation collaboratively focuses on human resources, financial resources, material resources, and creative resources to ensure successful students”. If elected to the Nettle Creek School Corporation Board of Trustees, I will respect differing views and opinions and listen in an unbiased manner, to make informed decisions, communicate and act with fairness, consistency and transparency; collaborate with Board colleagues, Superintendent, Corporation staff, Community members and stakeholders to do my part in attaining, and honoring, the Corporation’s Mission and Vision.


Everett Hampton

Age:  73


Work experience/former occupation if retired:   I am a retired educator.  I taught in the Northeastern Wayne Schools.  I also began my administrative years there as an elementary principal.  I left after 16 years to teach in the Nettle Creek Elementary School for five years as a fifth grade teacher and coach.  After five years I decided to  try administration again and became the principal of Central Elementary in the Western Wayne School Corporation. I was there three years.  Later, I decided to teach and taught eight years t Wernle (teaching many high school courses to help the boys get their GEDs).  My last year of teaching was at Richmond Community Schools as a teacher for at risk students.  I retired after a short bout with kidney cancer.  I also taught two years of drivers education.


Education/training: I have a BS degree and a MS degree from Ball State University.  My degrees cover elementary education, physical education, social studies, drivers education special education and school administration. My training was actual teaching in grades 2, 4, 5,6 Junior high/middle school and high school (several subjects).


Elected offices previously held, including school board, and years: I have been elected to serve on the Jefferson Township Board for approximately twenty years.  We on the board can proudly boost that our budget has been pretty stable for years with the genius of our township trustee, Joe Smith.


Community involvement:  My wife and I have lived in Hagerstown for forty-five years.  My community began with United Methodist Church.  I served a VBS teacher (3 years), Sunday School teacher (3 years),President of the United Methodist Men (2 years), church committees (4 years).  My coaching began with t-ball (2 years), girls softball (8 years), softball league committee (3 years), tourney softball team (8 years), volleyball (2 years), basketball (3 years), soccer (4 years), Track timer (3 years).  I have served on the Library Board for 24 years, Museum Board (3 years), Park Board (9 years), several school committees.  I was asked by the elementary school to create and direct a group of boys (Lads to Leaders) on how to become leaders for now and the future (1 year). Hagerstown Optimist Club (33).  I have served on many levels of Optimist International and positions n the club level.


Do you currently have children attending schools in this district? If so, how many and what grade(s) are they in? Or, if your children are grown and did attend this district, when did they graduate? 

We have two grown children.  They graduated from Hagerstown High School  Lisa-1993 and Jonathan-2000).  We now have a great grandson attending the Hagerstown Elementary School.


Contact information that may be published (phone number, email, etc.)

My telephone number is 489-5328.  Email address is seheh@al.com. 


Please limit your answers to 150 words (or fewer) for each question. 

1. My perspective is that the school board sets policy. They evaluate programs. They listen and decide about the whole school staff evaluations.  They try to listen to the citizenry, but no decision can be acted upon by any single board member. Board members have to be visible in the community.

2.  I have kept up with the pandemic situation.  The superintendent and school board have done a great job setting safety factors for all of our students.  The principals and teachers as usual are doing outstanding.  I will never underestimate our educators. Teachers are professionals  that know how to adjust whatever the situation.  I am totally impressed with all of the flexibility I have seen.

3.  I am not sure what I can do to improve right now, but I can assure everyone that I will make a difference. 1. An issue we need to work on a lot is educator’s pay.  I believe that educators are underpaid.  I also know that the state and federal government is to blame mainly. Educators are valuable resources and we have good ones2.  I also would like to get more if not all of our students back in the school buildings.  All teachers are on a high stress level doing both classroom teaching and online teaching. We need to try to take away some stress as much as we . 3.  I would also like to see our enrollment go up, but who doesn’t.

4. I listed three  above.

5.   My motivation to run as always are the students of our school community.  I have worked with youth my entire life.  I, as a school board member, will always put your children firs on every decision mad.  I do not have any outside agenda.  I am running against two good ladies, but I believe I am the best candidate for this job is of my experience in education and community involvement the past 30 plus years.  My reputation of getting things done is known too. I love the community and I will always try to make it a better place.


Sandra (Sandi) Schraub

Age: 58

Work experience/former occupation if retired: 

Retired earlier this year after nearly 35 years with JPMorgan Chase.  Most recent position – Management Development Specialist/Learning and Talent Solutions.  Supported development of new Market Directors and Branch Managers across much of the country.  Prior positions: District Manager – East Indiana (Richmond, Muncie, Ft Wayne) also Branch Manager, Licensed Personal Banker, Marketing Officer, Training Officer. 


Hagerstown High School – Class of 1980 

Indiana University East-Business Administration and Management

Leadership Wayne County

Extensive Training while at JPMorgan Chase

Elected offices previously held, including school board, and years: 


Community involvement

Prior – Greeter Ministry Coordinator – New Testament Church of Christ, Cub Scouts Leadership Council – Popcorn Fundraiser Chair, HHS School Improvement Planning Committee, Junior Achievement, Membership Council – Richmond/Wayne County Chamber of Commerce.

Do you currently have children attending schools in this district? If so, how many and what grade(s) are they in? Or, if your children are grown and did attend this district, when did they graduate?

Two grown children – HHS graduates in 2002 and 2012.  Currently have two grandchildren enrolled – Third Grade and Kindergarten 

Contact information that may be published (phone number, email, etc.)

Please do not publish contact info at this time.  


1. The role of the School Board Member is to work collaboratively with the Board body to ensure:

  • a safe educational environment conducive to learning for all people concerned – students, teachers, support staff and administrators. 
  • the school corporation is a good steward of the schools’ resources and facilities.
  • effective oversight of the Superintendent responsibilities and performance to expected standards.
  • sound and effective policies are in place to guide the school corporation.

2. I believe Nettle Creek School Corporation has made every effort to provide an effective educational experience within a safe environment for our students, teachers, administrators and support staff despite these uncertain times.  There is a structured plan to follow State and County Health Department guidelines.  I understand the plan is adjusted as necessary based on new or current information and events and options were made available for distance learning as requested.

3. We must continue to address meeting the needs of our teachers to ensure we consistently retain and attract top talent. Quality of instruction is one key driver of our continued success as a school and the success of our students.  This requires we be highly competitive in the areas of salary, benefits, continuing education and professional development. We must identify and support teacher’s classroom needs as well as have well-structured and effective selection and evaluation models.

4. In a community like Hagerstown, I believe the school is the heart. When the school and students succeed our local businesses succeed, our community grows and we retain and attract families. The School Corporation has been actively addressing many of the “issues” that are likely NOT unique to Nettle Creek.  While much progress has been made, I believe that school safety, technology enhancements and being a good steward of the corporation’s available resources is critical. The corporation is currently in the midst of a Strategic Planning process.  The completion of this process will likely reveal important issues and the plan to address those issues clearer.  

5. I am running for one of two At-Large seats as I am proud to be a Tiger and want to contribute to my community and the school that has been so important to my family and me. I believe my 35 years’ experience in financial services, management, leadership and talent development will allow me to add value to the continued success of the Nettle Creek School Corporation. While I have never been a classroom teacher or an administrator – I am 39 years married to a former classroom teacher and administrator – so have first-hand knowledge of the dedication and sacrifice teachers and administrators make personally to make a difference for a child or young adult. I look forward to the opportunity to have a role in supporting the very talented and motivated leadership of our school to continue their quest of educational excellence.  

Share this: