Patch sent all local candidates for office identical questionnaires in order to compile candidate profiles prior to the April election. Each candidate who returned the survey will be featured on the site.
Venki Palamand, 45
- Address: 5385 Royal Hills Drive
- Occupation: Engineer/Small business person -manages family owned business (manufacturing) in Oakville.
- Public Service: Mehlville Board of Education 2007-present; Board President, April 2011-present
- Education: Graduate Oakville Senior High 1985; Bachelor of Science, Washington University, 1989; Master of Science, Mechanical Engineering, Washington University, 1994
- Years Lived in the Mehlville School District: 35
- Why Run?: To build upon and continue the progress we have made over the last 2 yrs, and work to make Mehlville one of the best districts in the St. Louis area.
What do you see as the biggest issue facing the Mehlville School District?
We need to continue to improve student achievement and learning opportunities for students, and strive to make Mehlville a "Destination District," a place where young parents want to locate. We are headed in the right direction.
In what area does Mehlville School District need to improve? Are you satisfied with the way the district has been operating?
Increase revenues, via private funding/donations, at a District wide level - naming rights to classrooms, libraries, or seats at the new auditorium, etc.
We have made a great deal of progress over the last two years, but I will always strive to improve the District.
In what areas do you intend to participate in the district outside of school board meetings?
I have served on various District committees, such as insurance, communications, negotiations. Over the past five years, I have given guest lectures in AP Physics on various topics, such as Gravity and Relativity. Served as Master of Ceremonies for the Mehlville School District Recognition Awards in 2011 and 2012. Helped with fundraising, at various schools.
Mehlville School District has a Comprehensive Review Committee that is studying, among other things, merit pay for teachers. What is your position on merit pay?
Skeptical, but willing to listen to proposals. Any new pay system should be fair, affordable, and not harm collaboration between staff members.
Assume you win election. What single thing do you want to accomplish during your term on the board.
See "Biggest Issue" above.