Longmont Chamber Questions

Here are answers I submitted to the Longmont Chamber to be published in the Business Advocate.  I encourage you to read a copy of the next Advocate so you can read what other school board candidates said, too.

One thing I learned in answering this questionnairre is that you can say much in 50 words.  That’s tough when you’re answer broad questions such as these.  When you’re limited to 50 words, you have to cut out all context, there’s no room for nuance and, in some cases, you must leave out critical details.

So, please consider these answers as conversation starters.  Please ask questions.  What would you like me to expand on or clarify.  What questions do my answers lead you to think about?

Please don’t assume context, motives or hidden agendas.  Let’s talk.

1.     Do you feel that business should play a role in public education?  If no, why not?  If yes, how?

Business is in a unique position to rally the community around meaningful goals (Madison, WI business helped boost 3rd grade reading by 33%); launch special initiatives such as bringing science & technology schools to the district, and break down walls between school and community to create real world learning opportunities for students.

2.     Do you feel that the business community’s interests impact public education?  If no, why not?  If yes, why?

Public schools are a recruiting tool for business.  Families want options.  Business can’t stand idle.  Businesses must lead the charge to help St. Vrain create a portfolio of high demand schools that already exist in neighboring districts.  We need dual-emersion language, Montessori and science focus schools to name a few options.

3.     Do you feel that the educational community’s interests impact the business community?  If no, why not? If yes, why?

We must make the transition from our 50+ year-old system and step into the 21st century.  Schools must offer tailored instruction, enable teachers to focus on high-value instruction and give students more responsibility for their own learning.  Transitions take up front investments for long term pay-offs.  Business must help chart these investments.

4.     Are you satisfied with the pay scale for the first year teachers?  If you are, why?  If you are not, what are your suggestions to increase the pay?

I need to learn more to answer this question.  The pay scale must be tied to specific goals.  Is our highest need to recruit new teachers or retain veterans?  Are we able to recruit math and science teachers?  As a board member I will ask these types of questions to reach judgments.

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