Today I had a facebook friend ask about my platform for the school board position. This was my response: (please share your comments and feedback in the comments at the end of this post)
My apologies for the delay in responding. I’m not able to facebook (or campaign in general) during school hours. First, it was a pleasant surprise to meet you and [name deleted] as well. I really went just to meet [name deleted] for the first time, I didn’t plan to stay and talk but I’m glad I did. Hearing the ideas and viewpoints of the voters is to me even more important than my ideas, but to answer your question [about my platform]….
1. I would like to see more emphasis on early education. If we’re going to raise our test scores and ranking among FL counties, we have to start early. We get a lot more bang for our buck in the early grades then we do in high school. (and I’m saying that as a high school teacher)
2. As we talked about on Saturday – the idea of selling green space in the middle of Bradenton – land donated by Dr. Sugg – is a non-starter. If we need to sell property we should sell the 215 Manatee Ave building and the adjacent lot. Move those employees to the PSC or even more them to portable space on school campuses. If the portables are good enough for our students, they should be good enough for SDMC employees, right?
3. If school board members are going to be paid a salary equal to that of a first year teacher, they should have some role in direct service to kids. Being paid $37000 for a part time job is crazy. Either that, or make school board a volunteer position. Spending $185000 a year + benefits for a school board is nuts.
4. I would like to see the district divert the maximum resources to direct services to students – technology tools, books, supplies, etc (really anything that will immediately benefit students) and much less on administrative staff, consultants and any other line-item or school position that does not directly serve students.
I also have some ideas about the school calendar that would boost student achievement, I believe. This can involve changing the school calendar to trimesters, going to a 4 day school week and/or a longer school year, and even possibly reversing the start times of elem, middle and high schoolers. There are many details to work out there but that’s the general outline.
Published: Monday, May 12 – 4:25pm