My interest in serving on the school board is to restore parental rights, address rezoning issues, and promote transparency in our school systems curriculum. I have spent the last two years listening and attending school board meetings and have already developed plans to address these areas of concern.
1 / RESTORE PARENTAL RIGHTS
For parents of children attending public schools, expressing your concerns about school policies, disciplinary measures, or the appropriation of district funding can be challenging at times. As a parent with a child attending a public school in Rutherford County, I understand your frustration and how daunting of a task it can be for your voice to be heard. That is why it is important to have someone be an advocate for you. In the past two years, the lack of transparency between the parents and the school board has added to the overall frustration which has led to parents feeling undervalued and their concerns not addressed. When I am elected, I will assure parents that I will listen and be a voice for the families in our community.
2 / ADDRESS REZONING ISSUES
We are a growing community that needs to address numerous educational issues including zoning. Rutherford County is one of the fastest-growing districts in Tennessee. In fact, it is predicted that we will add about 1,000 students for the upcoming year which gives an overall enrollment of 48,000 at 50 schools. Although the increased enrollment is positive, it has caused school overcrowding and pushed several schools to be either at or close to maximum capacity. A comprehensive strategy is needed for a long-term solution. That is why I support the 5-year school building plan. This plan will address the issues by looking at the current physical buildings for expansion.
Like many families in the county, my family went through a school rezoning two years ago. This past school year, we were faced with another school rezoning for our tenth grader. I joined other parents in the community and stood up for our right for our children to stay in the school zone within a 2-mile radius of our area.
The task of tackling rezoning issues will not be easy, but if elected, I know that I will make a dedicated, positive impact. I will bring with me more than 20 years of business experience in strategic leadership, budget management of a $15 Million combined budget with a Fortune 500 company, forecast analysis, and project management. I am skilled at reviewing data, uncovering insights, and using the data to guide decisions which is an important skill when managing large project budgets such as the $137 Million projected cost for the 5-year school building plan.
3 / PROMOTE TRANSPARENCY IN OUR SCHOOL SYSTEM'S CURRICULUM OPTIONS
While there are numerous curriculum options available to today’s public-school systems, I want to ensure that the options chosen for Rutherford County Schools meet the needs of the children.
It is imperative that any curriculum chosen provides an education that prepares our children for their adult lives. I am convinced that our current education systems are by-passing many basics, leaving our children unprepared to build upon those foundations. In addition, we must ensure that any curriculum chosen is age-appropriate. To facilitate this, it is important that parents have access to the material & teachers' manuals being used for our children and the choice to opt-out of material they deem inappropriate for their own children. Parents must be given the opportunity to obtain information about materials being provided to students in our classrooms and libraries. This is not book-banning, but transparency to allow parents an opportunity to decide if materials are age-appropriate for their children. I fully support parents' right to be aware of every aspect of their children's education. My end goal is to ensure parents and teachers have opportunities to partner in ways that are constructive, friendly, and in the best interest of our children.