Gerry Lee, a school board member from the Springfield School District, is the new president of the Missouri School Boards’ Association. Lee became MSBA president at the conclusion of the 2012 MSBA Leadership Summit held June 15-16 in Columbia. In remarks at the Leadership Summit, Lee said it’s time to return kids to the top of the priority list and quit using them as ideological footballs. He also urged state leaders to make early childhood education a high priority for the state. “Yet this year we are seeing our state actually reduce its support of early childhood education programs. Until we as a state make access to high quality early childhood education available to every child and every family, we cannot say we’re making a sufficient commitment to improving student achievement,” Lee said. He added another high priority must be tax credit reform in Missouri. Phil Hutchinson, a school board member from Grain Valley, was elected president-elect of MSBA for the next year. Doug Whitehead, a school board member from Jefferson City, was elected vice president. Vic Lenz, a school board member from Lindbergh, becomes MSBA’s immediate past president.