1) Why are you seeking this position?
Providing a high quality education for our children is one of our most important societal responsibilities. After spending 30 years as a student myself, and observing my own children’s education experience — and simultaneously watching our nation’s young people fall further behind the children of other developed countries, I chose to become more directly involved in the efforts to improve our education systems.
Elected as a University of Colorado Regent, I have addressed a number of issues, including the budgeting and financing of higher education, and the evaluation and assessment of the quality of education. I encourage and support improvements in quality, such as augmenting intellectual diversity and academic freedom on our campuses.
As my time as a Regent will soon be over, I wish to continue my involvement and efforts to improve our American education system.
2) What makes you the best person for the job?
I have a long personal experience with formal education and have learned significantly from my experience as a regent.
My general “conservative”, and “traditional” philosophy will help guide our school district toward further improvements in its education quality and toward an enhanced service to our students, their families, and the citizens of Douglas County.
I have a practical/pragmatic streak, but can also think “outside the box”. Additionally, the thoughts and concerns of others are important to me, and will be carefully considered.
3) What do you believe is the most important issue facing the Douglas County School District and how will you approach it, if elected?
The key component of education quality and successful outcomes is related to individual teacher qualities. Teacher quality is, in-turn, related to the adequacy of professional preparation and credential and to the degree of knowledge, both general and specific to the subject being taught.
Important for all student ages, but most critical for our younger students is a teacher who creates an exciting, rich educational environment which produces eager learners who enjoy school and thirst for intellectual interactions with their teacher and others. Such an experience if sustained will likely lead to an excellent educational outcome and a life-long habit of inquiry, study, and capability for sophisticated critical thinking.
In this light, I will fully support the current DCSD initiatives of teacher “Pay for Performance” and the honoring and rewarding of our excellent teachers. I will also search for additional mechanisms to recruit such teachers to our schools. I will be sensitive to our teachers’ professional recommendations, needs, and desires as our Board of Directors partners with them to create the optimal educational milieu for all our students.
I am also in dialogue currently with officials at C.U. regarding the concept of graduating Science, Technology, and Math majors with a simultaneous K-12 teacher training adequate to immediately qualify for a “Teaching Certificate”.