A High School education is a giant stepping stone to increasing one’s opportunities in life. To better prepare students to live up to their fullest potential, we must ensure they graduate from High School.
During my six years on the Board, we have increased graduation rates from 74% to slightly over 80%. I will fight to continue increasing the graduation rate by focusing on early indicators like elementary basics, such as reading levels.
Future Ready Graduates
An educated workforce helps attract businesses to our area improving the local economy.Unfortunately the cost of post High School education is skyrocketing.
I will fight for more Future Ready opportunities for our students. This will provide more opportunities for students to earn free or reduced-price college credits and internships while in High School.
There are no standardized children; every child has different strengths and weaknesses. We need to offer a complete curriculum provided by professional teachers with the training to give the individualized attention that every child needs.
I will fight for increased efforts to retain our teaching professionals. After hearing from our teachers, we need to focus on better compensation, mental health benefits, and student behavior, among other factors.
We all want our schools to be safe, and free of severe student behavior issues. Returning to school from remote learning did bring with it an increase in student behavior issues. We have introduced new enhanced security technology in the schools, but we also need to have a plan to get to the root of the problem.
I will fight for restorative practices, when appropriate, on non-severe issues, to help the student accept responsibility for their actions and a clear path to getting back to a positive approach to their school career.
Schools should be safe spaces for our students, teachers, staff, and parents. Over the last four years, we’ve increased security at our schools with both equipment and training.
I will continue fighting for a common sense school safety and security program while ensuring we are utilizing best-practice.
The School Board has a responsibility to use our tax dollars as efficiently as possible. The School Board needs to focus on creating a soft landing for the end of federal relief from the COVID years monies (ESSER funding).
I will use my leadership and experience to fight to prioritize programs that were effective.
Communication & Transparency
While serving on the School Board I have made it a priority to visit schools and talk with our students and educators and fought for better communications with our community. There is still work to be done.
I will fight to increase transparency between the School Board and community stakeholders. There should be regular listening sessions, we should communicate our strategic goals and benchmark data through a data dashboard, and expand our Student Advisory Councils.
Strategic 5-year Plan
It is time to develop a new Strategic Plan for the School District. The top 5 to 7 issues from community listening sessions (and issues identified by Board Members) will drive budgeting and policies for the next 5 to 6 years. This Plan must be sensible and aware of the challenges we face in an urban school district. More importantly, the next Board must follow the plan, rather than leave it on a shelf for four years.
I was honored to be heavily involved in the last Strategic Plan development. We used the last Strategic Plan to improve our early education reading scores and raise our graduation rates. Under my terms as School President, I am extremely proud that I led the fight and that we stayed focused on our plan. I will fight for a well-reasoned plan and ensure it’s implemented.