(Crystal A. Proxmire, Dec. 18, 2013)
Charles (Chuck) Moeser turned in his resignation Tuesday night after over 20 years on the Ferndale School Board, including ten as Board President. The Board has 30 days to find someone to appoint who will fill his position. The partial term ends Dec. 2014.
“Chuck Moeser was a highly respected member of the Ferndale Public Schools Board of Education for more than 20 years. Throughout his association with the schools, both with the board and as a volunteer, he always acted with integrity and the best interests of our students,” said Board President Jim O’Donnell. “We will miss him on the board, and I will certainly miss his counsel and advice to me as president. The school board wishes Chuck and his wife Annie well in their retirement and we look forward to his return for a formal celebration of his service in the near future.”
He and his wife are ready to enjoy retirement. Moeser said in his resignation letter: “I have seen and been a part of many changes in the school district. The district administration, staff and teachers are the best anyone could expect. They make Ferndale Schools what they are today.” He also added: “I am also proud of the wisdom and guidance provided by my many Board colleagues over the years. The district has been very creative in providing education over the last 20 years, and I hope they continue to keep the students in focus as changes continue.”
In the 20+ years that Moeser served, Ferndale Schools saw many changes. In a 2010 interview with The Ferndale 115 News, Moeser talked about the decision to bring in current Superintendent Gary Meier and to restructure the schools about ten years ago. “Gary Meier came on and saw some of the problems our district. Our district is part of Ferndale, Pleasant Ridge, Royal Oak Township, and part of Oak Park. Because we had neighborhood-based schools it meant there was a school for Pleasant Ridge and a school in the Township, and people were saying that it was segregation because we have a very diverse district, but the schools did not reflect that diversity. Going to grade-based schools helped to solve that problem,” Moeser said. “It also helped with resource management, team teaching and better opportunities for students. Any kind of change faces resistance, but the students and parents seem to like it and our test scores have been going up so I think it is working.”
The District also began adding on revenue-generating projects such as University High School and the Digital Learning Center. “The Ferndale District is one that saw these problems coming and began fixing things before they broke. Our theory has not been ‘where do we cut next,’ but ‘where do we raise money?’ We started doing accounting for other school districts. We brought in University High School to increase the taxes we receive by having more students in the district. Adult Ed. is the same way. We share resources and made a lot of improvements by restructuring the District and we rent out District property when we can, including the old elementary school that we rent to the City for the Community Center,” he said in the same 2010 interview.
Early on Moeser stood up for equality in the schools. “One of my first issues, and one of my big issues was that girls and boys should be treated equally. I got involved with the Board because one of my big issues was that the girls swim team was treated differently than the boys. One season the boys got all new lockers but the girls didn’t. My daughter was on the team and she didn’t understand why. The school told me that there wasn’t enough money to do both, and I got them to see that when you treat girls and boys differently, no matter what the reason, the kids are going to pick up on that and feel like things aren’t equal. That year the girls went on to win the championship and when they won the President of the Board gave his congratulations along with the promise of new lockers the next year. Those are the little ways we can make sure our kids get treated fairly,” he said.
Moeser has lived in the district his whole, living in both Oak Park and Pleasant Ridge. He graduated from Ferndale High in 1968. His children Molly, Gretchen and Matthew all went to Ferndale Schools and have grown into successful adults. He is an environmental specialist with a BS from Oakland University and a Masters from Wayne State. During his time in the community he also volunteered for the Pleasant Ridge Pool Board, Ferndale High School Theater construction, swim team pool ref and program designer and many services to help the band and orchestra.
Those interested in serving on the Board will soon be able to fill out an application on the Ferndale Schools website – http://www.ferndaleschools.org. O’Donnell said he anticipates that the board will interview candidates at a special meeting on Jan. 13 at 6:30pm. It is an unpaid position.
There will also be a celebration in Moeser’s honor which will be announced when information is available. Moeser and School Administration did not return request for comment. To read the 2010 interview, go to https://oaklandcounty115.com/2010/03/15/15-questions-for-chuck-moeser/.
UPDATE: Interested candidates may complete the Board Vacancy Questionnaire and submit it either via email to email@example.com or by U.S. Mail to Jackie Stroker, Board of Education Office, Harding Administration Center, 2920 Burdette, Ferndale, MI 48220. Please call 248-586-8652 to verify receipt of electronic submittals or for more information.
Applications must be received by 4 pm on Wednesday, January 8, 2014. The individual selected to fill the vacancy will be appointed during the Organizational Meeting which begins at 7 pm on January 13.
Please note: the Questionnaire is a PDF file designed to be completed on your computer. Fields will allow you to type. Save your work frequently while working on the file. Save the file to your computer, then attach it to your email to submit to firstname.lastname@example.org. Or save it and print to send via US Mail.