Retired FHS teacher runs for Board of Education

Lily Turkowski, Writer

The Fenton Area Public Schools (FAPS) Board of Education (BOE) is currently looking to fill three open seats. Elections will take place on Nov. 8 and the community will be able to vote for three out of six candidates that are running. The candidates running for these positions are Rachelle Edmunds, Renee Juhl, Nicolas Lecea, Mike Pearce, Ashley Prew and Keith Reynolds.

For FHS students, one of these names should stand out amongst the others— Pearce retired from FHS last year after 20 years of teaching at Fenton High and 30 years of service in the profession. Shortly after retirement, he began to hear of things going on in neighboring districts and became inspired to run for the BOE. 

“School boards should be focused on the kids. It’s not about red and blue or left and right. It’s about the kids,” Pearce said. “My own children have graduated from Fenton High so I don’t have a personal or political agenda. I simply want what’s best for the Fenton community.”

Although running for BOE may not be the common next phase in life for many recently retired teachers, for Pearce it felt like a natural next step.

“I’m not really a sit back and relax kind of guy. I still have a lot of things that I want to do— most of which are community service projects,” Pearce said. “Education is very important to me, especially the education of students in FAPS. I am deeply concerned with the education of the children of Fenton.”

If elected to the BOE, it is these concerns that Pearce plans to address.

“I’m concerned about the setback that students had both academically and mentally during the pandemic,” Pearce said. “Many students did not do well with virtual learning. We need to help those students to get caught up and to make sure that they are doing well with their mental health.”

In addition to student concerns, Pearce has a focus on teachers within the district as well.

 “Students learn the best when they have the best teachers. And we are facing a crisis in our country with the teacher shortage,” Pearce said. “We as a district need to make sure that we are retaining the best possible teachers and also recruiting the best new teachers to replace the teachers that are rapidly approaching retirement and will be leaving the profession very soon. We must be proactive with this process.”

In addition to running for BOE, during his brief time in retirement, Pearce has also worked with the Red Cross and the Kiwanis Club as a community volunteer leader. He spends time lifeguarding at Ascension Genesys Health Club and as a hobbyist runner, Pearce also plans to participate in the upcoming Jingle Jog. 

With his background in the Fenton community and FAPS, Pearce feels confident and prepared to serve on the BOE.

“I feel that I have the energy to get the job done, the knowledge of the educational profession and specifically Fenton Schools, the time to commit to the job and the integrity to do the job right,” Pearce said. “I love Fenton, I’m not going anywhere. And I’m committed to serving the community of Fenton.”

For more information about the Fenton BOE visit

A rundown of all candidates running for the BOE can be found at—fenton-board-of-education/article_bf6b871c-4f25-11ed-8a5b-0324ba5a4ab3.html.